On the surface, video games and professional
athletics couldn’t seem more different. After all, video games are anything but
an active pastime, and professional basketball requires peak fitness. But in
other ways, these activities have certain similarities. Just as there are some similarities between betting on regular
casino games and sports, there’s a lot of crossover between athletics and video games. They
both require talent, experience, and a great deal of hard work to master
coordinated movements and strategies.
Beyond their similar demands, video games have
been working to be more like sports for decades, primarily in the way they
emulate the professional sports experience. Game franchises like Madden and
FIFA put out a new AAA title each year, one with better graphics, a
more complete manager and player experience, and a greater sense of
watching/playing/being within the action.
As more leagues completely license their
players, facilities, and trademarks to video games, it was only a matter of
time before sporting institutions themselves started to become video game
companies, at least in part.
Recently, the Yankees made
a big investment in esports, the international competitive video
gaming leagues that are starting to become mainstream in some areas. In many
ways, sporting institutions find themselves in a mature industry. They’re
enormous businesses, but like all big businesses, their days of meteoric growth
are largely behind them.
This is not the case with esports. While still
not a sure thing, there is so much grassroots interest in competitive gaming
that it is only a matter of time before people start watching it just like they
do sports. What’s more, esports are
slated to be a medal event at the 2022 Olympics. That sounds crazy
to some, but it’s true. Are you starting to see a trend here?
Another way that real world athletics and
video games are going to become more immeshed with one another is with the
advent of affordable, accessible virtual reality. Excellent VR exists right
now, but it’s pricey and has yet to have a truly viral hit. It’s only a matter
of time before this becomes a big, big thing.
Imagine sports games a la Madden in virtual
reality. There are already VR systems that allow for running and other complex
movements. What if real athletes started playing in virtual worlds, worlds
where it was impossible to get injured in a tackle?
All of this sounds like sci-fi, but it’s only a matter of time before aspects of these visions become part of our reality. Sports and video games are already crossing over in fascinating ways. It’s only a matter of time before the crossover is complete and it starts to be difficult to see where one stops and the other begins.
Mathieu Blake - Internet Entrepreneur, loves technology, sports, the Montreal Canadiens, Poker, Poker chips, current events and travel. You will often find him Writing about different topics that interest him on websites and blogs. To submit an article, contact the website directly.
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