The world of video games is evolving day by day with newer renditions added to the ever-increasing list of games. Some new platforms and engines have sprung up in the last decade offering multiple game choices to its users. Long gone are the days when Video gaming was just a time pass. One can argue that the world of professional gaming is in fact one of the most money-spinning things right now. Players are adapting to the culture of professional gaming in their own ways. Institutions and even coaching centers are created to train young budding aspirants in the footsteps of their idols.
One of the best things about professional gaming is the money surrounding it. From lucrative tournaments prize money to added sponsorship and endorsement deals for players it is blowing out of proportion. Sometimes top players influence ordinary people to play certain games which would go on to become famous overnight. Some games of course are there in the market for over a decade. Some games have undergone certain modifications and arrived in new packaging to attract more gamers. The concept of online gaming has revolutionized the competitive sports world. With top players from across the globe competing with each other online, the craziness will only spread further among their followers.
What Are The Top Games Of This Year?
Games like DOTA 2, CS: GO, League of Legends are there for a long time and people really enjoy playing these games. Not only the famous gameplay, but these games are also famous for their lucrative cash offerings in major tournaments that decide the accolade of the top game of the year. Other games like PlayerUnkown’s Battlegrounds, Fortnite, Apex Legends are relatively new games that have gathered substantial followers over the last few years. This has been majorly due to streamers like Shroud and PewDiePie who keep experimenting on their streams with new games. New players who get a liking for the game from those streams will download the game themselves and try it out. In these, the game will earn a rapid player base and shoot upwards in the games chart.
Several factors are considered while gauging a game concerning its popularity. One of the many deciding criteria is the question of money involving the game. DOTA 2 has the highest prize pool generation over the years for its annual championship event- The International. The top games of 2021 are:-
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
|Total Prize pool||$14.75 million|
|Platform||Windows, Mac, Playstation, Xbox 360, Linux|
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is widely regarded as CS: GO. The game is a rebirth of the original CS franchise Counter-Strike 1.6. Back in those days CS 1.6 was the most popular FPS game along with Call of Duty. Thanks to the immersive First Person Shooter strategy, the game gained significant popularity in almost every LAN event and PUBs in the late 2000s. CS: GO was released in 2012 with few map changes and added cosmetics and UI. Over 20 million players engage in battling online in a MOD-based 5V5 Team Deathmatch. Valve developed the concept of online matchmaking into more elaborative skill-based gameplay and released this upgraded version of FPS shooter.
The game of Counter-Strike is merely simple to understand. There are two opposing sides in the game namely the Terrorists and the Counter-Terrorists. The main objective of the game is to defeat the enemy team eliminating each member before they can do the same. There are few tasks associated with the game as well like planting or defusing the bomb depending on which side the player is matched into. CS: GO majors involve over 24 teams from all across the globe. With a total prize pool of more than $14 million CS: GO stands as the number one game of 2021.
|Total Prize pool||$8.87 million|
|Platform||Windows, Mac, Linux|
DOTA 2 is one the most popular and decorated games of the esports universe. It is one of the first games to explore Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games categories. DOTA 2 is a MOBA game with millions of players globally who are as dedicated to the game as any professional. The game started back in the late 2000s as a special mod for Warcraft 3. Later that the game evolved through multiple stages from Defense of the Ancients to now DOTA 2. DOTA 2 carries the most decorated prize pool among all other esports games with prize money reaching over $50 million last to last year. The DOTA 2 majors and annual championship event- The International plays host to multiple aspiring teams who fight for the grand prize money. The game has slipped in rankings majorly due to the cancellation of last years’ The International tournament due to COVID19.
The Objective of the game is quite simple but the execution and gameplay are far from easy tasks. In DOTA 2, there is a whole universe of fascinating heroes and mythical creatures who have been known to lock horns for ages. The game itself comprises two opposing sides- the radiant and the dire. Players will be matched in either of the two sides with 9 other players from across the server in a 5V5 team battle. Players have to choose from 121 different hero options (highest for any game) who boasts different abilities in the game to fight with. The game will be concluded if either of the two teams succeeds in destroying the opposition fountain or throne. The concept of DOTA can be a little dizzy with all the spells and objectives around the game.
League of Legends
|Total Prize pool||$8 million|
Almost in line with the concept of DOTA 2, League of Legends can be regarded as the greatest competitor to Valve’s DOTA. RIOT games hold the rights of the game and continue to develop it into a standalone franchise. League of Legends or commonly known as LoL follows the rule of MOBA games. It also boasts a 5V5 matchmaking with several hero options to choose from. Here the role characters are called “Champions”. League of Legends has jumped in the ranking from 6th slot to 3rd courtesy of a stable prize pool despite the hit of COVID. The game had a prize pool of $8 million this year for its annual championship event. The game is particularly very famous among South Korean players and the rest of southeast Asia. League of Legends also is the world’s most-viewed game by viewership metrics.
The objective of the game is in line with other MOBA games. One has to take down or destroy the opponent base before the enemy could do the same. In this case, the players look to destroy opponent Nexus. The Summoners or the players compete with their selected champions in the match. Battles are fought to get more powerful. The game is constantly updated to keep up with other competitors.
|Total Prize pool||$7.87 million|
|Platform||Windows, Mac, Playstation, Xbox 360, Linux, IOS, Android|
Fortnite is a popular battle royal game featuring many new renditions which allow the players to also built walls and forts to allow them a strategic advantage over others. EPIC games launched this special game mode to compete with other available competitors. The unique gameplay and versatile environment of the game created a lot of buzz after its release in 2017. Among the other games in the list, it is relatively new but carries a large fan base nevertheless. Apart from the Battle Royal genre, Fortnite also boasts two other types of game- Save the World and Creative. The major competition involving the game is the Fortnite battle cup which is awarded annually to the champion team. The game has slipped in the rankings from last year’s top spot due to COVID disadvantages and low prize money collection.
The objective of the game is similar to other battle royal games. Here 100 players are dropped in a game surrounding the “Battle Bus” in a third-person shooter survival mode. The main advantage of the game is the uniqueness of creating structures and defenses which can be used as survival tactics. The Fortnite world cup is considered to be one of the largest gaming events with large audience participation and prize pool generation. Apart from continuous gameplay updates, the maps are modified for better too at the end of each season.
Call of Duty
|Total Prize pool||$6.27 million|
|Platform||Windows, Mac, Playstation, Xbox 360, Linux|
Activision’s greatest creation is also one of the major esports games in the world right now. Just like Counter-Strike, Call of Duty is also a very senior game on the list. It dates back to the start of FPS shooter games on personal computers. Over the period there have been multiple updates and several versions of the game. Each version would consist of new maps and gameplay objectives. But with the online matchmaking concept coming into the picture it became a major competitor of FPS shooter games in the world of esports. The Call of Duty league started in 2020 has shown great promise and is 5th in its year’s ranking in terms of prize money generation.
The main objective of the game is similar to other FPS shooters. The online multiplayer will follow the rule of 5V5 battle while previous mods of Call of Duty would consist of both single-player and multiplayer options. With different maps and mods in the game, it was one of the favorite LAN games in competitions and PUBS. Call of Duty has done well to retain a tournament-style structure from its inaugural year to boast a larger fan base.
Rainbow Six Siege
|Total Prize pool||$5.02 million|
|Platform||Windows, Mac, Playstation, Xbox 360,|
Rainbow Six Siege is based on characters by popular War novelist Tom Clancy. The game was developed by Ubisoft Montreal in 2015. It boasts a First-person shooter mode with tactical decision-making throughout the game. The game saw its highest prize pool in last year’s Rainbow Six Siege World championship. It generated around a $5.06 million prize pool which is even better than the previous year’s figure. This happened because, unlike other major tournaments, it was held back in February before the Lockdown.
The objective of the game is quite simple. Players are matched in either of two teams- Attacker and Defender. The game displays a 5V5 matchmaking with both teams trying to eliminate their enemies first. The game also boasts high-end gadgets and intense close combats which is unique to other FPS games. Rainbow Six Siege has its own Pro league that includes participation from 7 continents and a Six invitational tournament that spans over 5 weeks.
|Total Prize pool||$4.36 million|
|Platform||Windows, Mac, Playstation, Xbox 360, Linux|
Overwatch is an Activision Blizzard classic launched in the year 2016 with a distant future world setup. The game is set up in a dystopian future world with team-based shooter gameplay. Unlike other FPS, Overwatch has a 6V6 game structure where each team consists of 6 players. They fight in intense battles and combats to achieve victory over the opponent team. Overwatch also took a hit in revenue generation courtesy of the pandemic. As a result, the whole Overwatch league was shifted online to avoid Lockdown protocols. The game was rank 5 in last year’s list but saw a drop in ranking this year. This year the game only managed to accumulate a prize pull of $4.36 million compared to last year’s $9 million.
|Total Prize pool||$4 million|
|Genre||FPS / TPS|
|Platform||Windows, Mac, Linux, IOS, Android|
PUBG is one of the most popular modern-day battle royal shooter games. Developed by Krafton Studios PUBG boasts a unique style of survival versus shooting that involves both skills and survival tactics both. Upon its launch in 2017, it quickly rose to prominence in the international gaming scene. But over the years the craze of the game has subdued a little with multiple changes in the game and pro teams quitting the space. Last year PUBG suffered heavily due to the COVID pandemic and dropped from no 4 ranking to 8 this year.
PUBG is an online battle royal shooter strategy game that involves 100 players who are dropped on a particular map and left to battle each other for survival. The game can be played on a team, Duo, and single-player basis. In Team 4 players would compete and play side by side to eliminate other squads to win the chicken dinner.
|Total Prize pool||$3.73 million|
Hearthstone is a digital collectible card game created by Activision Blizzard. The game didn’t feature in last year’s ranking but made the list this year. Incidentally, it is the only game of this category to be in the ranking of top games for the year. The game has already started to experience several growing competitions from other franchises. Riot Games in particular has come up with similar titles to invade the market of Hearthstone. It will be interesting to see what Activision Blizzard does next to protect their card game franchise.
|Total Prize pool||$2.63 million|
It is an arcade-style soccer game that also boasts vehicle mayhem. Psyonix released the game back in July 2015. The game is very unique in its concept and involves soccer simulation with rocket-powered cars. To put it simply one has to use the upgraded car mods to play the ball around just like a normal game of soccer. The game has its own “Rocket League Championship Series” that involves participation from many professional players across the globe. The game is also regarded as one of the most difficult-to-master games with a lot of skill involved. Last year’s Championship series rolled out around $2.63 million in prize money. It is estimated that the league will rise up in terms of participation and prize pool generation in upcoming years.