Research firm Superdata has just released a ton of information about the size of the esports market – and other areas of gaming – throughout 2016.
Here’s our pick of some of the top stats and facts.
1. Esports is growing – but it’s not as big as other gaming markets
Esports generates around $892m each year, and that’s a huge number. But it’s worth remembering that it’s still quite some way behind VR ($2.7bn), PC gaming ($34bn), console gaming ($6.6bn), mobile gaming ($40.6bn) and ‘gaming video’ – including the likes of YouTube and Twitch ($4.4bn).
Overall these different industries above made $91bn in 2016.
2. League of Legends is still king of the MOBA
League of Legends made $1.7bn this year. This means Riot Games earns $150m per month from League, according to Superdata. Dota 2 generated $23.4m per month this year, in comparison.
The Dota 2 International had a $20m+ prize pool, while League’s Worlds was just over $5m.
However, while ‘Dota 2 and League of Legends are notable in eSports because of the big tournaments they host, Smite and Heroes of the Storm both hosted tournaments in 2016 to the tune of $1m each’, Superdata reminds us.
3. Overwatch made twice as much as CSGO this year
This stat is not so surprising, considering Overwatch launched this year and CSGO has been around for a while.
But Blizzard will certainly be pleased about Overwatch passing the $500m milestone in its first year.
Elsewhere, Guild Wars 2 made more money than Minecraft on PC this year. Bear in mind this is just for PC – it doesn’t include the money Minecraft makes on consoles and mobiles.
4. Buying habits differ greatly between Asia and Europe
We knew this was the case, but not to this extent. These graphs are extremely telling. In general, gamers in Europe are much happier to buy full-price games, while free-to-play titles generate much higher revenues in Asia.
Another graph (below) shows that esports also generates the most revenues in Asia.
5. Esports had more than $70m in prize pools this year
$78.3m in prizes were handed out from esports tournaments in 2016.
There are also now more than 200m esports viewers worldwide, and almost $60m was spent on esports betting overall.
6. Video content is booming
The rise of the streamer and YouTuber has paved the way for a golden age of video game content.
The gaming video content market size is set to rise to $4.4bn in 2016 – a 35% rise from 2015.
Twitch made almost $2bn this year in revenues – that’s twice the sum Amazon bought it for a few years back.
The full Superdata report can be found here
Image source: Riot Flickr
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
A keen League of Legends and World of Warcraft player, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He works as full-time content director for the British Esports Association and runs ENUK in his spare time.