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National Sports Day: Why is it time to start talking about Esports?

It has been disregarded as a sporting non entity for a long time but Esports has made a case for itself over the past few years

Esports tournament

C.C. Chengappa

Updated: 29 Aug 2021 9:03 AM GMT

Video games have been something that several millennial's have grown up with. The concept of finishing a mission or scoring a goal has been fascinating for quite a few children back in the day. This evolution of video gaming into professional video game competitions is something that has seen a massive growth in the past 5-7 years.

The money involved has more than doubled, the people witnessing events have ensured that tickets are sold out and the participating teams have begun representing their country. The stakes are high for Esports, and it is time that it be given the international importance that it deserves.

In an exclusive interview with the Bridge, Director of Esports Federation of India (ESFI), Mr. Lokesh Suji, stressed on the importance of building on the meteoric rise of esports that India has seen. Events like the Asian Games 2022 and the previously held Asian Indoor and Marital Arts Games will and have seen Esports feature.

India has also won medals at events like the Asian Games in 2018 where Tirth Mehta won a bronze in the card game Hearthstone. This precedent has also allowed Indian parents to see Esport careers for what they truly are. It is no longer just a past time that involves staring at a compute screen for hours on end and wasting time with no 'focus on studies'.

Another very important facet of esports in India is that there has been a gradual difference and demarcation made with apps such as rummy, poker, betting etc. This is important as there can be no similarity made with genuine competitive sports like Counter Strike and Dota that are not based on 'luck' or 'chance' to claim victory.

This has helped make a big distinction that has furthered the scope to enhance Esports as not just a money making racket that conducts its business through pop-up advertisements online. Governments like the Delhi Government have already taken the first steps to recognise Esports by ensuring league teams get the recognition they deserve.

The 'Future is Here' has been a common term used by Esports fans and organisers alike. Apart from being a really good catchphrase, the meaning of this cannot be stressed enough. The future lies with technology and keeping aside the common notion of sports really stands for, Esports has brought us to the first round of technology mixed with sports.

It is time we take Esports out of our bedrooms and into the open world of competitive sports and hardcore competition. The world needs to know that there are gamers who wish to play for their country and given in their all with strategy, accuracy, persistence and years worth of practice.
After all, Esports is a passion and not just a past time.

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