Each day, 12-year-old Brady Donbeck spends about an hour playing his favorite sport. He practices scoring goals with teammates. Brady’s team is very good. Last year, they finished fourth in the North American Finals. But they weren’t competing on a soccer field or in a hockey rink. They were at their computers playing Rocket League. That’s a video game that combines car racing and soccer.
Competitions involving video games like Rocket League are called esports. Esports is short for electronic sports. Worldwide, more than 500 million people watched esports events last year. So more people are starting to consider that playing video games is a sport.
Brady is one of them. He competes in the XP League. That’s the nation’s largest youth esports league. The sixth-grader from Virginia also plays basketball. And he spent years on a travel soccer team. He says esports aren’t that different from traditional sports.
Still, many people say that even though esports require skill, gamers should not be called athletes.
Should esports be considered a sport?