The esports industry is one of the fastest-growing in the world. While it used to be that you couldn’t find an online gaming tournament that paid in actual cash prizes (other than online poker tournaments), these days there are several that revolve around different types of games and really separate the noobs from the leet gamers.
The tournaments are open to players anywhere in the world, regardless of race, gender, or location (except for places with poor internet access), as long as you have access to the game and your gaming skills are up to the challenge of making the cut. Join us as we take a look at the five biggest esports tournaments from some of the biggest esports companies currently in existence all over the world.
The Honor of Kings World Championship is probably the biggest mobile esports championship in the world. Though the gamers who play against each other in this tournament do so on mobile devices, the game’s 100 million active players can easily compete with the followers of PC or console titles. Honor of Kings is what’s known as a multiplayer battle arena game that was developed specifically for the Chinese mobile gaming market.
In 2015 the game burst onto the open market, making a huge splash only rivaled by games as massive as Vainglory. Because the game was designed specifically for mobiles it really took the industry by storm, and, as a result, the Honor of Kings cup is the Mt. Olympus of the mobile gaming scene. Every year, millions of players hope to make it to the top, but only a few ever get a taste of life in the clouds.
If we’re talking longevity, Evo wins the prize every time. Evo goes back a long way with the gaming community, all the way back to 1996, to be precise. That was the year that B3: Battle By the Bay took California by storm, and those who were there saw gaming history in the making. Many gamers look back on that day and kick themselves for thinking it wouldn’t be a big enough deal to attend.
Though the tournament’s name changed to something little less of a mouthful, the games being played stayed the same. It’s a Street Fighter gamer’s paradise, with a plethora of options from Mortal Kombat to Tekken and Super Smash Bros., to name but a few. Evo has only grown in popularity since its Battle By the Bay days, and it’s not slowing down for anyone.
This tournament is relatively new to the gaming community, but boy was it received well. Over 40 million players took part in the last Fortnite World Cup. After ten weeks of competing, that 40 million was whittled down to one winner who took home a 3 million dollar prize.
The tournament features solo and duo competitions as well as Creative finals and a Pro-Am section. Qualifiers came from over 200 countries which makes it one of the most widely entered gaming tournaments in the world. Over 19,000 fans turned out to watch the tournament over its three-day stint at the Arthur Ashe Stadium in New York, not to mention the millions of fans watching from their homes all over the world.
League of Legends is one of the most loved games in gaming history, so it makes perfect sense that any LOL tournament would be a huge success. The 2019 League of Legends world championship had a viewership of 3,985,787 viewers all across the world. The creative and theatrical atmosphere of the tournament is something that sets it apart from other games. The championship really feels like a celebration of everything the gamers have achieved along their long road to success. Every year that this tournament is held, it breaks a new viewership record.
In terms of earnings, the Dota 2 tournament is the winner. With the largest cash prize pool of any esports tournament ever (a cool 34 million US dollars), Dota is one of the older tournaments that the other tournaments all look up to. Its inaugural year was in 2011, and it actually used crowdfunding as a way to source part of the prize money.
There you have the big five; the top of the top, biggest, and best online gaming tournaments in the world today. It won’t be long before there are a whole slew of new ones to compete with these OG’s!