League of Legends: The Growing Phenomenon

Football, Basketball, League of Legends: What do they have in common?

With 32 million people having played the video game League of Legends around the world, It is fast becoming a sport with spectators, sponsors, teams, and live events. It is still growing and with the support of the community could one day be an alternative to the likes of football and basketball.


IEM hannover - crowd at the last League of Legends tournament f0rmidilosis

League of Legends was made in 2008 and is a MOBA. MOBA stands for Multiplayer Online Battle Arena. It pits teams of 5 against each other with the goal being destroy the last structure in the enemy base. With 32 million people having played the game since january, it's the biggest game in the world. This has translated into teams with sponsors, with players earning a living playing the game. At the latest event over 267,000 people tuned in from all over the world at one time and totaling a viewer count of 2.2 million over the 5 days the event was held. Further more 1,000s showed up in person to support there favorite team live. With the game still growing with recent expansions to China and Japan the amount of people playing is only expected to grow. This means that even more people will start watching the game and the viewership numbers will keep climbing. With the current sample size it wouldn't be surprising to see an tournament being more watched then a basketball or football game. This game has become big business with big players and sponsors willing to sponsor the big teams. It is becoming close to a multi-million dollar operation. and the game is free to play...