We Talk The New World Of eSports Wagering With Scott Cooley Of Bookmaker.eu

To say that eSports are a rising industry would not be much of a surprise to those in the known. The rise of coverage on outlets ranging from Twitch to ESPN is staggering and with larger and larger cash prizes, more players, and easier access to streaming games, the industry is booming. Of course there is a new side to eSports and that is the one of wagering on matches, and I recently spoke with Scott Cooley of Bookmaker.eu about the new world of eSports wagering.
How would you rate the rise of esports compared with other sports?
Scott Cooley: It is a rapid rate. I often compare the ascension of eSports to that of MMA. It immediately attracted fans and sponsors, and while some believed it would die out after the initial boom, the sport has only gotten stronger. We feel that eSports is on a similar trajectory.

What do you think the appeal is of esports and how long has betting been a part of it?
SC: Like a football or basketball game, the appeal is the excitement of competition. Viewers can really lose themselves in an event. And where there are viewers acutely tuned in to watch a sport, there will be gambling. Betting on eSports has been around since its infancy, but we’ve only been offering odds for almost a year and a half now.

In what ways is eSports betting similar and different than traditional sports wagering?
SC: It’s similar in that you can bet on eSports just like you do traditional sports. There is a spread and a moneyline to wager on. There are also futures odds where you can bet on which team will win a particular eSports tournament. I would say the one major difference is that there aren’t any totals, or over/under, odds offered.

What are some of the difference in regulations regarding Esports?
SC: Because we are still in the beginning of creating eSports odds, we put limits on the amount you can wager. Currently, our clients can bet to win anywhere from $250 to $500 on a single matchup or futures bet.

How do you handicap players and events?
SC: Much like we do the traditional sports. We have a team of oddsmakers compiling information, conducting research. Based on that, we create power ratings, run numbers and establish odds.

What are your criteria for an event to be allowed to wager on it?
SC: For any sporting event to be wagered on we want a governing body overseeing and validating the outcome.

How does the process of setting odds with eSports compare and contrast to traditional sports?
SC: It’s much more difficult at this stage because we’re very green with the process. We can talk in detail about every player, team or trend in the NFL, NBA or any other major sport. But eSports is a sector of the industry that we’re still learning about.

What do you see as the biggest challenges for eSports and ESports Betting going forward?
SC: As with any sport, the biggest challenge is match-fixing. While we really do believe eSports is the next big thing on the entertainment and betting block, if match-fixing becomes a serious issue, the sport won’t last.

What type of games are the most popular to wager on and are there games that you will not take wagers on?
SC: The most popular games are StarCraft, League of Legends, Dota 2, Counter-Strike and Call of Duty.

How have the developers and publishers been toward the notion of wagering being involved with their games?
SC: They’ve been very receptive to the connection of eSports and gambling, particularly in the European and Asian markets.