A brief history of eSports and the future for gamers

You can join us on our journey by taking part in our ICO on July 25th. Early adopters can get a 30% bonus on their initial investment in the public pre-sale.

In the first recorded Olympics of 760 BC, there was only one event: a race between two people over a distance of 600 feet. There is some debate among historians about whether the competitors were naked or not, but they do agree that this was the only sport that took place. From this humble beginning rose the most prestigious event of the sporting calendar, with 28 sports ranging of everything from archery to the marathon.

Perhaps one day eSports will be added to that list. The earliest known eSport originally ran in 1972 at a Stanford A.I. lab with a game called Spacewars. The lab was probably the only place in the world that could have hosted such an event, with elaborate, hulking goliath computers that took up entire rooms. The contestants got to experience first-hand a phenomenon which would become prevalent in the following decade through the rise of arcades, although inter-connectedness through different machines was still some way off. A few years later another academic institution, the University of Illinois developed a system called PLATO that would be the start of this trend. Originally intended as an educational computer, the system could connect remote users and allow them to interact with each other in real time.

The Rolling Stone journalist Stewart Brand described the Spacewars spectacle of five players smashing buttons next to each other as “a nice sort of physical violence to the onscreen violence that was going on.” Nobody at that time could have got anywhere near predicting just how many more buttons would be smashed across countries and continents. In the 90s one nation in particular decided to try and legitimise competitive gaming. With huge broadband internet networks, South Korea gaming culture took a grip of the nation in a decade largely identified with financial difficulty. In 2000 the government decided to embrace this, founding the Korean e-Sports Association as a branch of its culture ministry and setting the start of what we consider to be the modern era of eSports.

Part of the joy of gaming is competition. World-building and exploring are fundamental parts of the argument that games are art, but the fun part of what brings us all back time and time again is the age-old human love of sport. An issue the industry faces, in our opinion, is the perception that eSports encourage isolation. They are not seen in a positive light by some people, and taking part is not supported (yet) in a way that a traditional sport might be.

To shift this, part of what is needed is to show the world a different side to what we do. If you’re not immersed in a game it can seem like a shallow use of time. For the past two years we have run dedicated servers for games like League Of Legends and we perceive gaming to be like an organised marathon. Every contestant takes part and pays a fee for the sake of a bigger, better competition. Full control over your tournaments also allows complete control over skill levels, and events that are geared this way might be better compared to professional skateboarding competitions.

The eSports industry is growing at a phenomenal rate, with nearly a doubling of players expected worldwide by 2020. We think this industry is currently like those early Olympic games, full of promise and potential. We want to provide a service that encourages more gamers to treat their sport like marathons. To do this we are implementing a blockchain system in our ICO this month, which you can read more about here.

Joining our 10,000 players is easy. First sign up with us at Yamzu, then create and verify an account. After this, add us on your game client of choice. Once this is done you can create a tournament with us, choose the stakes for entry and join from your game client. Our web servers will then host the competition so you can focus on playing at your highest level.