Here are some of the highlights to look forward to this week.
League of Legends: Mid-Season Invitational
Riot Games’ 2016 MSI is being held in Shanghai, China with six of the best League of Legends teams battling it out in their attempt take home the $250,000 winner’s prize.
Starcraft: Pro League
The Pro League continues in Starcraft this week with several of the top players facing off against each other throughout the week.
CS:GO: DreamHack Austin 2016
The CS:GO scene is going to be quiet for the next few days until we reach the weekend when suddenly there is going to be a plethora of top quality action.
DreamHack Austin is on the way and the best of the Americas will fight it out. MLG Columbus champions Luminosity will be there and they are likely to be the eSports bookies’ favourite.
Dota 2: Manila Major Qualifiers
The Dota 2 sphere is currently seeing the conclusion of the Open Qualifiers before the Regional Qualifiers for the Manila Major get into full swing.
The Regional Qualifiers will see all of the hopefuls from China, Europe, Southeast Asia and America go head to head in their regional pools in the hope of securing one of the remaining four spaces ahead of the thriller in Manila.
Heroes of the Storm: Super League
The Super League continues as HotS teams aim to ultimately secure a top two finish and a qualification to the Heroes Global Championship this summer.
Overwatch comes back into play this week with the beta being released to gamers who have pre-ordered in the next couple of days. That will be followed by a few days of open beta before the eagerly anticipated wider release on the 24th May.
There is a primitive competitive scene, with a couple of games set to be played this week so keep an eye out for more activity.
The eSports betting sites and what they’re offering
For anyone who takes their League of Legends betting seriously, SkyBet has to be the place to go. SkyBet offer between 13 and 15 different markets per game, with odds including “Both Teams to Destroy an Inhibitor” as well as betting on the over/under line on total kills, and the first team to slay the Dragon and Baron.
Similarly, for Starcraft, they allow betting on the series score as well as the outright winner of the series which puts them apart from many bookmakers. They have limited Dota odds on the remaining Open Qualifiers but when the Regional Qualifiers come around with more established teams the variety of odds available may well increase.
SkyBet are not yet offering odds for CS:GO DreamHack Austin whilst Heroes of the Storm and Overwatch are not on their radar just yet.
Betway have a completely dedicated page for eSports, similar to that of “Games, Casino, Poker, Bingo” etc. and you can tell they are focussing a lot on eSports.
They have sections set up for CS:GO, Dota, Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm, League of Legends, Starcraft 2 and World of Tanks although most are filled with just a “special” bet on whether or not the eSport will be at the Winter Olympics.
Their coverage of CS:GO and Heroes of the Storm looks to be up there with the best in terms of variety of markets whilst their League of Legends betting is limited to just outright match winners.
Bet365 is the best eSports bookmaker for a wide variety of eSports.
Not only do they have everything covered from Overwatch to Heroes of the Storm, but they offer more than just outright match betting.
For Heroes of the Storm, a punter can bet on “Total Maps,” “Map 1 Winner,” etc. The detail is not as substantial as SkyBet but for those looking for more than your main three eSports, it’s the place to go.
Ladbrokes, PaddyPower and Coral
Despite the size of these bookmakers, they are lagging behind substantially in their eSports offerings. Whilst all of them now have an eSports section on their websites they tend to lack any depth.
Ladbrokes leads the chasing pack with coverage of nearly every eSport but is limited in its nature. Any eSports fan looking to have a bet will only be able to bet on the outcome of a match.
At the time of writing, Coral is offering odds on just one eSports match whereas there are hundreds taking place which is comfortably the worst of any large UK bookmaker as they continue to lag behind. Meanwhile, PaddyPower is only offering outright match betting on the League of Legends MSI series this week.