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6 Reasons E-Sports Is the Future of Filipino Entertainment

Nov 25, 2020 10:54:00 AM

A couple of decades ago, gaming was considered a niche interest that attracted a following only among a certain demographic. But as the digital era flourished, so did major gaming studios, as well as the technologies that were involved in gaming. And in homes, mall arcades, and Internet cafés all across the Philippines, a golden era for gaming began. That renaissance is still ongoing now, especially with the rise of a competitive form of gaming called e-sports.

Popular e-sports titles in the Philippines include Defense of the Ancients (DoTA) 2, League of Legends, Counter-Strike, Call of Duty, StarCraft, Overwatch, Fortnite, and Hearthstone. Moreover, for the first time in Southeast Asian Games history, e-sports was made a medal event in the 2019 edition of the games. On home ground, the Philippines’ own e-sports contingent Team Sibol won gold at Mobile Legends.

Indeed, gaming is now being taken very seriously in the country, and e-sports may very well be the future of entertainment. Here are six reasons why, as well as how you can become involved in the Philippines’ thriving gaming scene.

Many More Filipinos Have Become Passionate about Gaming

In general, there’s been a rise in interest for gaming among Filipinos. There are so many opportunities to get into the hobby, starting with the consoles that can be used. Beyond traditional consoles, there are now games for handheld consoles, PC multi-player games, and mobile games. Games also come in different genres that appeal to every gaming personality type, from those who prefer action and combat to those who like simulators. Many more Filipinos now game to relax and decompress, get some excitement into their day, or lose themselves in highly immersive virtual realities. Because the general interest level in games is high, so too is the interest in e-sports or competitive gaming.

Gaming Parlance Has Become Part of Mainstream Culture

Second, gaming is no longer thought of as something that belongs exclusively to geek or nerd subcultures. This is evident in the fact that gaming terms are now widely used in pop culture. Not only do more people get the context behind gaming terms like “noob,” “asa,” and “ggwp.” “Ping” is now in mainstream use to refer to instant messaging. And because of games like Among Us, slang terms like “sus” have now become more familiar as jokes. It counts for a lot that gaming has been demystified in some way, as more people now feel included in the once-secluded world of gamers.

Games Are Now More Accessible and Easy to Play

Accessibility is another factor that’s contributed to Filipinos’ interest in gaming and e-sports. Expensive gaming gear is no longer a prerequisite for getting into games. It’s possible to enjoy an immersive gaming experience from a smartphone or tablet, and whether one is online or offline. For digital gaming assets, on the other hand, gamers can turn to solutions like PayMaya and buy gaming credits with an e-wallet. It’s worth checking out PayMaya’s partner merchants for gaming pins and topping up for popular e-sports titles.

Gaming Events Draw the Hype

Gaming was once thought of as a solitary activity, but now it is something that can draw literal crowds of thousands. Many now see the Philippines as a mecca for gaming enthusiasts. The DoTA 2 tournament held in April 2016, by German e-sports league ESL One, filled up the 16,000-seat Mall of Asia Arena to full capacity. Moreover, public interest in gaming hasn’t diminished even in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Online e-sports events, streamed from platforms like YouTube and Twitch, remain popular and draw lucrative viewership. That’s likely because it’s also a form of entertainment that can be consumed in real-time, from a safe virtual distance.

There Are Awesome Prizes to be Made from e-Sports Competitions

Another way that e-sports compares to its traditional athletic counterparts is its promise of great rewards. There are actually millions of dollars at stake in the world’s most-followed e-sports categories. DoTA 2 alone commands a prize pool of $35 million, while Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has up to $20 million in its prize pool. As Filipinos already get quite excited over big prizes, it’s understandable that watching gamers play for high stakes has become a more common pastime.

e-Sports Athletes Are a Thrill to Root For

Filipino gamers who follow e-sports also do it to watch their favorite gaming personalities. Those who grew up watching streamers like PewdiePie may now be following global e-sports headline makers like Faker, Rookie, and Xyp9x. But the country also now has homegrown Filipino talent to cheer for in e-sports teams like Mineski and TNC Predator. There’s an audience watching them for the same reasons conventional athletes are watched: mastery of the game and the potential for victory with a team.

Conclusion: Adrenaline, Entertainment, and Pinoy Pride from E-Sports

If you yourself are looking for an exciting new field to get involved in, consider e-sports. Watch a stream with friends sometime, or try out the most popular titles for yourself. E-sports is sure to grow even further in the Philippines because of its ability to excite, entertain, and invoke pride in Pinoy talent. Get into the future of entertainment and try playing a new game today!