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Top games of the season: Analysis of the Most Popular and Well-known Games in the World of E-sports

Since its birth in the early 2000s, esports has made great strides toward becoming a major industry. What began as small gatherings of geeks and computer game enthusiasts quickly evolved into a massive phenomenon.

Replacing the first tournaments held in basement spaces of shopping centers and garages, competitions now take place on the world’s most famous sports arenas and arenas. Esports has become a global player in the entertainment and competitive sports market, attracting people from all continents, ages, and backgrounds.

Throughout this long period, there have been many different “leaders” among the disciplines of esports: initially, there were arena shooters, then strategies, and later MOBAs with FPS shooters and even battle royales. Some games did not stand the test of time and failed to become classic esports titles, while others, on the contrary, solidified their positions as market leaders and continue to bring esports to the masses. We will talk about the latter. Let’s discuss the most popular and well-known esports games of the season.

Counter-Strike 2 – a new image of eternal classics 

When we talk about “massive” computer games, even without mentioning esports, Counter-Strike immediately comes to mind. This video game phenomenon has firmly established itself as one of the most popular games and later became one of the driving forces behind esports. In 2023, the legendary Counter-Strike received the suffix 2, but it continued to gain popularity, evidenced by numerous aspects: from a large number of cs2 gambling sites affecting the gambling and betting market to tournaments with audiences of thousands.

The explanation for such popularity is very simple. Rather, there are several aspects that define Counter-Strike as it is now. First of all, it is a game with a huge history and respectable age. Counter-Strike started as a modification for the legendary Valve game Half-Life and has since been evolving with its own mechanics. Over the long period since the early 2000s, Counter-Strike has been played by more than one generation, which is very important for games – to appeal to both young and old.

The second, no less important aspect of Counter-Strike popularity is its “simplicity.” By simplicity, we mean not the ease of game mechanics, but its clarity. Even a person who has never played CS can easily understand the rules of the game and what is needed to win and how to achieve that victory.

Finally, Counter-Strike is quite a “media” discipline. Stars of world sports like Neymar and Zinchenko play Counter-Strike, and they also invest in the game. For example, David Beckham has his Guild club, and Oleksandr Zinchenko has Passion Ua.

Overall, Counter-Strike 2 is one of the pillars of the esports world and will remain so for a long time.

Dota 2 – once the king of MOBA games 

If Counter-Strike dominated the world of competitive computer games almost immediately after its appearance, as the genre was familiar and understandable, then MOBA games are a product of esports development, or rather, player demands. Their heyday came in the mid-2010s and caused a real frenzy.

For a long time, Dota 2 remained the market leader among MOBA games. Like Counter-Strike, it managed to emerge from under the wing of a legendary game. In Dota’s case, it was Warcraft 3, and in 2011, Valve, once again, made it into a separate game.

The phenomenon of Dota 2, which still helps it stay afloat and be one of the central disciplines, is the prize pools at competitions. There’s just so much money involved in Dota 2 competitions that it’s unmatched elsewhere. What to say when Dota 2 still holds the record for the largest prize pool in esports history, namely 40+ million dollars for just one tournament. Even some major traditional sports don’t have such figures.

Ultimately, the tournament ecosystem of Dota 2 was quite sterile and slowly dying by the beginning of 2024, but it seems that with the start of this season, things are gradually improving. Many diverse tournaments from various organizers with transparent qualifications are emerging. This is a very needed development for Dota 2.

League of Legends – the benchmark of production 

If we talked about Dota 2 as the king of MOBAs, it would be rather silly not to mention League of Legends, which is mistakenly considered the main competitor of Dota 2. Although they are games of the same genre and even developed by the same people, they are still “fighters” in different weight categories: games popular in different regions and essentially do not intersect. However, if one really wants to pit them against each other, I’m afraid Dota 2 fans won’t like the outcome: LoL is much more popular in the Western world, which is not surprising.

The popularity of League is ensured by its developers at Riot Games. They spare no expense on marketing and promoting their brainchild, so it’s no wonder League of Legends is so popular. They constantly collaborate with top brands, such as Coca-Cola, Mercedes sponsors their tournaments, and the World Championship trophies are made by Tiffany.

Moreover, Riot are masters of production and everything related to it. World-renowned stars like Lil Nas X and Imagine Dragons regularly perform at their esports championships, and their opening ceremonies quickly become hits. And what can we say when LoL has several virtual music bands, whose videos gather millions of views on YouTube.

Conclusions In 2024, at the top of the esports industry, essentially the same giants remain as they were five years ago. CS2, Dota 2, and League of Legends remain market leaders, but that doesn’t mean there’s no one else. For example, VALORANT is becoming more popular every year, Apex Legends remains a unique case of a battle royale esports, and Mobile Legends: Bang Bang is topping the charts in terms of views. In the future, there will be more esports disciplines, and as a result, the entire market will become even bigger.