Can Esports take us a step closer toward mass adoption?
According to a press release, ConsenSys has helped the North American Collegiate League (NACL) build an Ethereum-based platform for ESports match reporting and to automate tournament payments in cryptocurrency. This move means that NACL players will now be able to receive their winnings to a crypto wallet that’s generated for them with the possibility to exchange to FIAT currency. According to NACL, future players will be able to choose between ETH and DAI.
The first step will be for blockchain to help players send their match results. Currently, manual reporting for online gaming is overseen by tournament administrators who review screenshots before paying winners. Disputes arise from time to time and can cause big delays in payments to teams and individuals. Generally, the Esports space is suffering from a lack of transparency.
The clunky current process has meant that teams have been kept waiting months to get paid, never got paid, and furthermore there have been accusations of the league itself misallocating sponsorship money.
Blockchain has the ability to offer Esports transparency and help players claim their winnings, quicker. It could also allow the division of winnings between team members through an executable smart contract – the latter is something that is currently just being discussed. NACL and ConsenSys already conducted tests in April 2020 as the NACL hosted a Fortnite tournament with payouts in DAI.
Simply claiming the winnings is one way to go. Another, perhaps more complex and still to emerge route is that teams could take their winnings in DAI or ETH and lock them up in a protocol allowing a passive income through providing liquidity to users.
In this way, teams are not only earning the winnings but also gaining interest on that amount whilst also stimulating further use cases and adoption of the rapidly rising DeFi sector.
A rapid rise
Esports and gaming have burst into the mainstream over the last five. In that short space of time, we have witnessed a niche market transform into a form of entertainment around the world.
One of the main reasons for Esports meteoric rise has been advocacy from mainstream celebrities such as Michael Jordan and Drake. Pus an increasing amount of coverage from traditional sports media outlets such as ESPN, and, of course, the rise of Fortnite.
Most projections put the Esports ecosystem on track to surpass $1 billion in revenue for the first time this year. And revenue is expected to grow from here — Newzoo projects it to hit $1.8 billion by 2022.
Asia-Pacific, North America, and Europe are the top three Esports markets in terms of audience and revenue. Accounting for over half (57%) of global Esports viewership in 2019, up from 51% in 2017, per Newzoo.
Lockdown has driven Esports more into the mainstream as it was well reported that Nineteen-year-old Dani Bereznay from Hungary, an official Esports Formula 1 driver for Alfa Romeo beat world-renowned drivers Lando Norris, Nico Hulkenberg, Stoffel Vandoorne and Nicholas Latifi during the lockdown in virtual tournaments.
2020 is shaping up to be a good year in regards to Cryptocurrency adoption as more and more widely known and recognized brands jump on board.
In the last 3 months, we have witnessed WAX join forces with the iconic Topps playing cards. Reddit announcing that they will be rewarding users and contributors of 2 particular subreddits with cryptocurrency – one of which is the subgroup r/FortniteBR which has over 1.2M subscribers. Now the Esports industry is getting involved.
The sheer volume of people now being exposed to cryptocurrency is increasing. People are now starting to see the utility and benefits more.
Is 2020 the year of mass adoption? Let’s wait and see… As always we will continue to watch this space. Make sure you bookmark DappRadar and sign up to our newsletter below to get updates direct to your inbox.