Electronic Sports Tips for Beginners

Electronic sports, usually shortened to esports are a fairly new form of sports. Since they started nearly fifty years ago in South Korea, esports have grown and expanded to touch every corner of the globe. Billions of people have now been exposed to video games thanks to the spread in the use of electronic gadgets. 

Games or Sports?

This article aims to give tips for beginners. It would probably be helpful to try and distinguish between video games and esports. It is true to say that all forms of  electronic sports are a form of video games. The reverse, all video games are some form of esports is not true. A game only becomes a sport when a competitive spirit or element is introduced. The competitive element means the players or competitors are contesting  so that one or more ends up the winner. So what distinguishes sports from games is that in the former there are winners and losers, whilst in the latter the aim is merely to enjoy and pass the time. 

Decide on the Type of Game

Electronic sports are classified into groups commonly called genres. These genres have certain common characteristics. It is important for the beginner to be clear on the type of game he/she wants to learn and the genre or category in which it falls. This is because games in the same genre have the same general rules. Outlined below are some of the genres of esports.

  • First Person Shooters - In this category, the player experiences the game through the eyes of the character he /she is playing as  examples of games in this category are Doom and Painkiller. 
  • Sports - these are related to actual   sports played around the world. One example is called FIFA
  • Fighting - this genre has the battle or fighting games like Capcom and Streetfighter
  • Real Time Strategy (RTS) - in this genre gamers compete over the web. Opponents can be in different countries. Games include Age of Empires and Warcraft (one player takes control of multiple units)
  • Multiplayer Online Battle (MOBA) - this is similar to RTS but it  involves a team with each team member controlling a unit. Games include League of Legends and Smite. 

Watch Some Videos

Knowing about genres and game categories is all very well but if you are a real novice at esports another step on the road to become an esports gamer might be necessary. The point is, merely reading up on genres and names of games belonging to these genres might actually leave you more bewildered and confused than you were before you started. This is because the games are so many, hundreds of them in fact. To get a real feel of what's involved we recommend looking up lists of popular videos online and see if they arouse your interest, or do an online search of games in any genres you think could pique your interest and see what comes up. This way it will help to have an idea of the type of games that you are most likely going  to enjoy and you go for those. 

Work Out a Budget

Having made the decision on the type of games you want to learn and practice on, the next logical step is to prepare a budget of likely costs. Playing electronic sports cost money, most notably, the gaming equipment, (you definitely need a good laptop, PC or mobile handset). A budget is a big help in deciding on the type of game you are going to play and what you will be playing them on. Remember some types of hardware cannot support certain types of games. 

Choosing the Platform

This is the next logical step. Which platform you select is influenced and determined by two factors. The first factor is the budget you come up with because some esports games can only be played on certain gadgets only and not on others. Remember the various gadgets have different costs. The factor influencing the type of games you can play is the platform you are using because certain games can only be played on some platforms and not on others. 

Usually mobile gaming is the easiest to start with for most people. It has little or no initial costs because most people already have a mobile cellphone and with most mobile phones you are able to download free and ready to play games. Mobile phones have another advantage in that their games range from the really simple ones like simple puzzles to some which are quiet advanced. So as a beginner you progress in stages which is a very effective learning method. Another advantage is the mobility factor, you always have your mobile with you so you can practice anywhere when you have free time. On the other hand PCs are generally more expensive to acquire. In fact, some of the most sophisticated ones have prohibitive prices. PCs have a wider range of games for gamers to pick from and for some of these no fee is charged for playing online. For those with desktops or laptops it is cheaper if you choose to play the less demanding or older games. 

A third option available for gamers is console gaming. It is important to understand that console gaming is different from either use of mobile phones or PCs in that it is gamer specific. When buying a console it is for the sole purpose of playing esports games. Examples found on the market include Playstation 4, Xbox and Nintendo Switch. Consoles tend to be cheaper than game level PCs and are good for up to eight years after purchase without need for upgrade. One disadvantage they have is that when used for playing online payment is usually required. Buying a console therefore means you have made a long term financial commitment. 

Find an Instructor

An instructor, a coach, a mentor, call him/her what you want but this will be very helpful. We are not talking about a paid professional but someone you know who already knows and plays esports better than you do: a sibling,  a neighbour, a friend and so on. After all learning is always easier with someone to guide you

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