When you think of esports, the first titles that may come to your mind are League of Legends, Dota 2, or Overwatch. These games have been dominating the esports industry and have attracted millions of viewers all over the world. However, there is a subgenre of esports that is often overlooked and not as popular as the others: sports simulation games. In this blog post, we will delve deeper into sports simulation games and explore why they are worthy of more attention.

What are sports simulation games?

Sports simulation games are video games that simulate real-life sports activities. These games mimic the rules, skills, and strategy of actual sports events and allow players to control their own virtual team. Sports simulation games often offer highly realistic gameplay, graphics, and physics, as well as licensed content from major sports leagues and teams. Examples of sports simulation games include NBA 2K, FIFA, Madden NFL, and MLB The Show.

Why are sports simulation games important to esports?

Sports simulation games are important to esports because they bring a different type of audience to the esports scene. Fans of real-life sports are already invested in the competitive aspects of their favorite sports leagues and teams, and sports simulation games allow them to experience that same level of competition in the virtual world. This creates a natural crossover between fans of traditional sports and fans of esports, and can lead to an increase in viewership and revenue for both industries.

The growth of sports simulation games in the esports industry

Although sports simulation games have not received as much attention as other esports titles, they are slowly gaining popularity. The NBA 2K League, for instance, was created in 2018 and has already attracted major sponsors and partnerships. In addition, FIFA esports tournaments have been organized by major soccer leagues and teams, such as the ePremier League and eMLS. This growth in the popularity of sports simulation games in the esports industry reflects the potential for these games to become a significant part of the esports landscape.

The challenges of sports simulation games in esports

One of the main challenges that sports simulation games face in the esports industry is the perception that they are less skill-based than other esports titles. Critics argue that sports simulation games rely too much on luck and strategy, rather than fast reflexes and mechanical skill. However, proponents of sports simulation games counter that these titles require a different type of skill and strategy, such as team management and playcalling. Another challenge that sports simulation games face is the lack of in-person events and audience engagement. Unlike other esports titles, sports simulation games are not played in front of live audiences and do not offer as much excitement to viewers.

The future of sports simulation games in esports

Despite the challenges that sports simulation games face, the future looks bright for these titles in the esports industry. With the continued growth of traditional sports leagues and teams, sports simulation games will likely see a boost in viewership and fan engagement. In addition, the growth of online streaming platforms, such as Twitch and YouTube Gaming, has made it easier for fans to watch and engage with sports simulation games tournaments. As more esports organizations and sponsors become interested in the potential of sports simulation games, these titles will continue to grow and develop as a significant part of the esports industry.


Sports simulation games may be an overlooked subgenre of esports, but they have immense potential for growth and success. These games have the ability to attract a different type of audience to the esports scene and bridge the gap between traditional sports and esports. As technology continues to improve and esports continues to grow, it is likely that sports simulation games will become an integral part of the esports industry. So, let’s not underestimate the potential of sports simulation games and recognize them as an important part of esports.

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