Esports is a huge industry these days. Tournaments are being watched by millions of people and offer millions of dollars in prizes. Over one hundred professional teams exist in every major esport. And overall, year after year, the number of people who play, watch and bet on esports is rising.
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Among the various countries that participate in esports, some are definitely better than others. And you’ll get to learn about them below.
South Korea has a very impressive esports history, partly because of the country’s early adoption of StarCraft and partly because of the South Korean culture, which is permeated by a workaholic mindset and a deep understanding of the warrior mindset. Strategy is many Koreans’ second nature.
In esports, this country excelled from the start. For many years, it had no rival in StarCraft and even StarCraft 2. It also has excellent League of Legends and Overwatch teams. But the list is much longer.
It seems that no matter what game the South Koreans start competing in, they will reach the top really fast. And if they get an early lead, you’ll never catch up to them unless you’re playing 24/7.
It’s not uncommon in South Korea to play video games for 12 hours a day, every day, and not be worried about anything else. Some of the world’s best esports players do it and they seem to have mastered the art of living with very little money until they make a name for themselves.
The most famous team in South Korea is T1. Their mythic reputation in games like League of Legends has elevated them greatly in the eyes of esports enthusiasts from around the globe.
Recently, T1 finished 2nd at Worlds 2022, after they got defeated in the Grand Final by DragonX, another South Korean team.
Sweden is perhaps best known for its CS:GO prowess. Lots of Swedes are in love with this game and grew up watching Ninjas in Pyjamas winning tournament after tournament.
Another big thing in Sweden is Dota 2. Valve’s MOBA game is quite popular there and Team Liquid’s current Dota 2 roster is full of Swedes. This team finished 3rd at the recent Dota 2 world championship, The International 11.
Despite being a very small country, Denmark is amazing when it comes to esports. Some of the best CS:GO teams come from there and names like Astralis are known by all FPS fans.
Denmark excels in games like CS:GO, Dota 2, and League of Legends. In some of these games, this country has amazing players. In others, it has entire teams. Famous organizations like Heroic and OG have roots in Denmark, and players like Soren “Bjergsen” Bjerg have impressed large communities with their skills.
By now you’ve probably guessed that most of Scandinavia loves esports. Finland is the birthplace of many amazing Dota 2 players, like Jesse “JerAx” Vainikka. It’s also famous for its CS:GO teams, like ENCE, and its StarCraft 2 genius, Joona “Serral” Sotala, who managed to dethrone the South Koreans after many years of total SK dominance.
North America loves many esports and although it doesn’t always excel in them, its teams and athletes are very well known. Some of the most famous North American organizations are Evil Geniuses, Cloud9, 100 Thieves, and Complexity.
One of the big advantages of North America is the large number of businesses that are willing to invest in esports as part of the marketing campaign. Because of this reason, NA clubs are fairly large compared to most of the rest and can offer players great contracts.
North America is famous not just for its esports teams but also for its esports software companies. Without Valve Corporation (the owner of Steam), Riot Games, Blizzard Entertainment, and other big companies like them, there wouldn’t even be an esports industry because they own all the games.
If we think in these terms, then esports was practically born in North America. So it makes perfect sense to have a lot of NA teams that play esports and strive to become the best.
Over the last 5 years, South America has become a strong region in esports. And countries like Brazil are leading the way. In Dota 2, Valorant, and CS:GO, Brazil has some of the biggest teams.
For example, just recently, FURIA Esports finished 3rd – 4th at IEM Rio Major, a CS:GO event that offered $1.25 million in prizes. Meanwhile, LOUD won the world championship in Valorant this year. And in Dota 2, teams like Thunder Awaken are almost as strong as the world’s best.
Nobody can deny at this point that esports in Brazil is a huge phenomenon. The world knows about Brazil from watching football, but the truth is that this country excels at esports as well.
When you say Ukraine, you say Natus Vincere. In Dota 2, this club won the first edition of The International. And in CS:GO, it has the best player in the history of this esport, Aleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev. Without a doubt, Ukraine is one of the best countries in esports.
France loves CS:GO. French clubs like Team Vitality are highly successful in this esport and have some of the world’s best players. The most famous example is Mathieu “ZywOo” Herbaut, who won the CS:GO Player of the Year award twice and was the runner-up twice more.
France also has great StarCraft 2 players like Ilyes “Stephano” Satouri, and Dota 2 players like Sebastien “Ceb” Debs.
It’s hard to talk about great esports countries without mentioning Germany. The Germans are famous not just for organizing iconic esports tournaments, such as The International 1, in places like Cologne, but also for some of their teams, such as BIG.