It took decades before competitive gaming actually created a buzz and reached the international spotlight but you can say that it’s worth the wait considering the massive number of unwavering fans and enthusiasts it has drawn throughout the years. Actually, from the latest data gathered by GamingScan , the size of the global eSports audience in 2019 has already reached an astounding 454 million. If that figure doesn’t surprise you, then you can take a look at the chart from Whitman Syracuse University for a better comparison. In that study, they’ve put projections in terms of the number of viewers in League of Legends tournaments up against the number of patrons in every sports league in the U.S. and apparently, they deduced that at its current growth rate, by 2021, LOL leagues could outperform basically every professional sports league in the United States and rank next to the NFL. At that scale, it’s overwhelming to just imagine the staggering amount of people that one eSports event could reach!
So, where is music in all of this?
As you very well know if you’re a Super Bowl fan or any sports enthusiast, you’re probably familiar with half-time and you can say the same for eSports. The lull period during tournaments is the perfect time to squeeze in some commercial break–in this case, a short production from artists and bands who can either promote their new album or stage a short live performance. Needless to say, it was a great channel to connect to notable tech and gaming firms who would offer multimillion-dollar contracts to the top and highly-talented music labels and brands. On top of that, the sheer number of attendees can significantly ramp up their views on YouTube and boost their streams on Spotify. Brilliant, right?
But more than that, getting the singers and music bands to record video game soundtracks would also be absolutely good for both parties in terms of profits. It’s technically a win-win case. In fact, if you’re not aware yet, Imagine Dragons actually released their single “Warriors” during the 2014 League of Legends Worlds at the Sangnam Stadium in Seoul. After that debut, it was hailed as the most-watched League of Legends video online for five consecutive years with 200 million views under its belt, until it was eventually surpassed by K/DA, a fictional Korean pop band created by Riot Games, that premiered an exclusive LOL song, Pop/Stars, in 2019.
Besides those, another title that was popularized and released during an eSports tournament was “Ignite” in 2016 which featured professionally world-recognized DJ and record producer, Zedd. Even better, last year, one of the largest events in Fortnite was DJ Marshmello’s live virtual concert where it had more than a whopping 10 million attendees. That figure doesn’t even include those audiences who watched the concert on other media platforms like YouTube and Twitch so you can just imagine how massive its marketing power is now. Indeed, we can’t deny that the success of those events is pivotal to the entertainment industry. For the most part, it’s evident that eSports competitions coupled with unparalleled music performances whether virtual or live are imbued with so much potential in which a lot of media and multinational brands have started tapping into. In all fairness, it’s a mutually profitable business relationship for both industries in which the possibilities are unthinkable especially when you combine it with the immeasurable capabilities of technology.
After all, no one can argue about good music, right? If there’s any common denominator we have with the rest of the world, it’s that we all enjoy music and entertainment despite our differences in tastes and preferences. And anyway, the gaming scene is a versatile industry where all forms of music genres are welcome. And for most of us, music is a universal element where we love associating a nice tune with whatever we’re doing–whether we’re cooking, doing our daily workout or just playing our favorite games.
What can we expect in the future then?
It’s going to be difficult to predict exactly how things are going to evolve further once more technological innovations begin kicking off in the next few years but for sure, it’s not going to be the last time we will see eSports and virtual concerts attracting millions of loyal following whilst drawing in real-life celebrities to participate in affairs related to the digital gaming space. So, if you’re interested to ride this tide, you better start working on it now because this is only just the beginning!