Insights on eSports

By Naomi Wang

Discovery+ is a series of online industry panels which give students the chance to interact with working professionals and learn about the careers they aspire to enter. These panels provide youths and working professionals with the opportunity to better understand industry trends, hear first-hand perspectives from industry professionals, and gain valuable advice on entering or navigating these industries.

On 21 July 2021, Advisory hosted Discover+: eSports, the 38th edition of the Discovery+ series. Speakers on the panel included:

  • Stephanie Lim (Moderator) – Executive, Programmes (ESports), SCAPE
  • Chris Tran – Head, Esports for Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan, Riot Games
  • Jayf Soh – CEO and Founder, RSG
  • Yip Ren Kai – Co-Founder and Managing Director, Reddentes Sports Pte Ltd and Redd+E Pte Ltd

Below are some key points shared during the session:

As eSports is a relatively infant industry, there is no such thing as a typical workday. Most of the work is centered around helping our team deliver their products for the present and creating content to engage with the audience. Additionally, our work also involves developing the industry for the future, and leveraging on other industries’ techniques to do so. There will also be more opportunities for those who are bold and innovative.

eSports is a multidisciplinary industry, with careers in team management, content creation, business development, professional gaming and much more.

To pursue a career in eSports, different skill sets and qualifications are required for each role. For instance, someone working as a team manager may require a communications major. However, beyond choosing the different roles, an innate passion for the eSports industry, as well as a good understanding of the games, is crucial for one to build a career in the industry.

Some other soft skills that are helpful include curiosity, being a self starter and the willingness to take risks. There is no need for a degree in eSports to have a role in the industry.

First and foremost, it is important to have the support of your parents. This can be achieved by having an honest conversation with your parents about your aspirations towards a role in the eSports industry.

Moreover, for aspiring professional gamers, it will also be helpful to get into streaming. In a field which values the ability of one to perform under pressure while generating entertaining content for the audience, streaming will be a good start for one to develop these skills at a young age. Through the process, one will also be able to learn more about the technology and the ecosystem in the industry.

In addition, as there is still no fixed system for eSports players to be scouted, it is crucial for one to sign up for community events to develop a network while improving one’s skill in the game so as to be scouted by team managers in the game. It will also be helpful to look at guides online.

For other careers in eSports, it is also important for one to have a strong suit for a particular field before looking at how one can possibly contribute to the industry.

Crowdsourcing, advertisement and sponsorship are some of the many ways the industry uses to monetize content. In addition, the free broadcasts available on Youtube, Facebook and Twitch maximises sponsorships and viewerships. ProView, where audiences are able to watch the match from the perspective of a professional player, is also another option for companies. 

There is no industry that is risk free. However, there is no harm in learning more about the eSports industry by speaking to people in the industry and making an informed decision. For example, SCAPE’s eSports programmes may be a source of information for one to get to know what the industry is really like.

eSports is an industry with largely untapped potential for growth, but a lot of involvement still needs to be done at the regional level for it to develop further in Singapore.

At a community level, it is also crucial to get rid of the stigma surrounding eSports, and get more people involved in this industry. Increased exposure for eSports also needs to be achieved, and Singaporeans need to start supporting local teams. A lot of involvement also needs to be achieved at the regional level, and different organisations need to work together so that everyone sets the same targets and grows to the fullest potential.