The rise in the popularity and legitimacy of eSports has led to the creation of many platforms specifically tailored to video game betting.
CS:GO, Dota 2, Hearthstone, and League of Legends are just some of the games found on current popular betting sites. For readers who have never partaken in eSports betting, earning a profit is not an impossible task with enough game knowledge and a little strategy.
Using League of Legends as an example, here are nine tips to kickstart a beginner’s journey into the niche market of eSports betting.
Choose a Reliable Site
If your country allows for online betting, the first step will be to choose a reliable site. Some sports betting veterans may recommend using multiple sites. As of now, however, the eSports betting market is still small and there will likely be no difference between the top players.
Viewers that familiarize themselves with one website will gain predictability and a reduced risk of being cheated/ scammed by smaller, unknown websites.
Build a Bankroll
Before placing any bets, users need to start with a betting pool which is capable of absorbing losses. For eSports betting, a pool of 25 units should suffice. For example, to place bets at $10 per, a $250 bankroll is in order.
The betting increments may appear small, but the goal is to consistently earn money while having fun watching eSports. 100 ten-dollar bets at 1.9 odds and a 60%-win rate will result in a profit of $140 – simply by making smart bets over time.
Understand the Math
— lolesports (@lolesports) October 3, 2017
While plenty of gamblers can succeed by betting on instinct and ‘feel’, to be successful long-term, gamblers need to understand basic concepts of value.
If a betting market has 1.5 odds, every dollar placed (and won) will return $1.50.
In League of Legends betting, it is common to see 1.20 odds for the match winner if they are strongly expected to win. This means a player needs to win at least 5 or more of these bets to break even. By winning 6 of these at a dollar each and then losing one, a user will be left with $1.20, a net profit.
Understand the Different Markets
Betting sites offer many options on where to gamble besides who is going to win the match. Some include who will: get first blood, destroy the first tower, kill Rift Herald, etc. While diversification is often a good strategy, becoming an expert in a few markets will likely yield greater returns.
Some of the best markets to have consistent/predictable returns include: match winner, team to slay the first dragon, and team to slay the rift herald.
It would be great to get rich quick, but the odds of doing so are against the masses. Remember, there is a reason why betting sites exist and it is to earn profit from uninformed decisions. Build a betting bankroll, steadily increase the amount bet on each game, and soon enough it will become leisure to make money while watching Twitch.
Don’t Dwell On The Past
It is easy to take a big loss from a “guaranteed” win and become frustrated, only to try and earn it back right away. Similarly, a winning streak can give viewers false courage and overstep, only to see their team crumble.
Often, the lesser team may be winning the early game due to risky ganks and the desire to capitalize on the opportunity arises. Take a breath, and ask “who is going to win this game come team fights/late game?” Even if Cloud 9 is winning in the early game against SKT T1, there is a good chance Faker and Friends will recover.
Look Out for Unpopular Teams/ Trends
— 1907 Fenerbahçe (@FBespor) October 3, 2017
The employees setting the odds on sports sites may have small biases towards certain teams. Try to take advantage of this if there is an opportunity to bet against the hype.
When Doublelift joined TL during Spring 2017, everyone expected them to beat CLG when they had a 5k gold lead at 20 minutes. Betting on CLG to win would have resulted in a 5x profit when they eventually clawed their way back and won.
Only Bet Live
There is often no benefit to placing a bet before the eSports match begins. Waiting to gather as much information as possible will always result in better decision making.
There are markets which are only active before champion select that present higher odds. However, what if a team opts for a late-game composition and decide to give up the early game to the lesser team? This may have been unintuitive before champ select.
The variety of markets offered entices users to bet on many different things. At such a high caliber of play, champion picks are incredibly important; having this information will lead to greater consistency and profit.
Stay Up to Date
Approximately 10-15 additional articles will be released during the 2017 LCS World Championships, discussing match predictions, interviews, and market tips. The start of each article will feature a bankroll progress update if bets during the previous days were made. And as always, bet responsibly.