Should Video Games Be Considered a Sport?

Jillian McGahan     Staff Writer

According to the dictionary, a sport is “an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment.” Sports that come to mind are soccer, basketball, baseball, football, etc.; yet that begs the question: Should video games be considered a sport?

Video games, by definition, are “games played by electronically manipulating images produced by a computer program on a television screen or other display screen.” Based on that, video games aren’t considered a sport like basketball and soccer.

However, video games are much more like sports than people have realized. Thinking back on the definition of ‘sport’, video games fit the criteria. Although not as physical as other sports, they still require physical exertion.

Gamers use energy to move their fingers and hands to talk on their headsets to teammates, which has kept them awake and alert. There are also mental exhaustion involved in video games. After a while, your mind will get tired from staring at a screen and from all of the thinking that goes into playing. Other sports experience mental exhaustion, too.

Video games, to a certain extent, involve an amount of skill like any other sports. Anyone can play video games based on a sport (soccer, football, baseball, etc) in spite of the fact that they are not good at it. Still, we have to keep in mind that they are advanced players too. There are professional athletes in every sport, including video games.

 Gaming is considered a career. A professional gamer are full-time competitive players who get paid to play games; they are the same as any professional athlete. Their average regular monthly salaries range from $1,000 to $5,000 much like professional sport athletes who get paid to play.

Most of them are normally paid by their teams or sponsors, so they can play and compete in gaming tournaments around the world. Like any sport, video games involve competitions between individuals or teams. A competition involving video games is referred to as Esports (also known as electronic sports, e-sports, or eSports), a form of organized, multiplayer video game competitions.

Gaming tournaments, such as “The Call of Duty World League” and “Call of Duty Pro League”, bring professional players together to compete and climb the international ladder. In these particular tournaments, only the most elite players reach the “Call of Duty Championship”, which has been the game’s highest level since 2013. Each competition is held on the most recent version of the game; the 2018 Championship, won by the Evil Geniuses, was played on Call of Duty: WWII, while the 2019 competition will be played on “Call of Duty: Black Ops 4.”

The Esports craze has inspired some of the most heated competitions the world has ever seen and it’s only getting bigger. Gamers who play games like “Dota”, “League of Legends”, or “Counter-Strike” have entered the high stakes world of competitive gaming. This has packed entire arenas for the tournaments, official leagues are filled with franchise affiliations, and the prize money has entered into the six figures.

Video game competitions, a form of entertainment, are just like any other sport competitions because there are players, spectators, and a prize or title. Video games may not be exactly the same as the usual sports, but they are quite similar.

Depending on how you look at it, video games may or may not be a sport. Video games do not involve as much physical exertion as other sports, and are more electronic and virtual. However, considering all the similarities between it and other sports (professional career, pay check, competitions, titles, spectators, etc.), you could say that video games are a sport.

Campus Lantern
The Campus Lantern is the school newspaper at Eastern Connecticut State University. The Lantern is run by students, for students and reports on everything hppening around campus. We publish every other week. The Lantern has been in publication since 1945.

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