“Like real sports, we send players to the Asian Games in a professional way” – Hideki Okamura, chairman of the Japan Esport Alliance, an organization established in February this year to promote Esport in Japan, and lobby for Esport to appear in the Olympics.
“These steps are the best way for the public to increase their understanding of Esport,” Okumura said. Three Japanese players – in which only Tetsuro Akasaka is a professional gamer – will play in the Esport tournament within the Asian Games in Jakarta and Palembang. According to Okumura, he wants to build a foundation for social activities to be more widely accepted by society.
Esport tournaments are now held around the world, often in large auditoriums with thousands of viewers and streamed online. Winning players can get millions of dollars in bonuses, and these players and their professional teams will attract many big company sponsors.
Korea has long been the center of competitive video games, but Europe and North America have embraced it quickly. Japan is only at the beginning of Esport.
According to many estimates by Newzoo market research company, Esport will be an industry worth USD 905.6 million by the end of 2018, an increase of 38% compared to the same period last year, and has a total revenue up to year. 2020 is 1.4 billion USD. The number of Esport audiences is expected to increase to 250 million by 2021, compared with 165 million this year.
Because of its popularity among young people, Esport was selected as an official event for a medal at the Asian Game in 2022 in Hangzhou, China.
The IOC recognized the popularity of Esport and its potential to bring a new audience to the Olympics, just like what the Commission tried to do when surfing and surfing the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. .
But so far, the IOC is only watching games as a potential Olympics sport.