Esport Betting: A Comprehensive Guide (+Chess Betting)

  • By: Bill
  • Time to read: 18 min.

As the popularity of esports continues to grow, so too does the betting market for these competitions. If you’re looking to get in on the action, then this guide is for you. We’ll cover everything you need to know about esports betting, from the different types of bets you can make to where to find the best odds.

We’ll also provide a crash course on chess betting, as this is one of the most popular esports to bet on. By the end of this guide, you’ll be ready to start placing winning wagers on your favorite eSport events.

Let’s get started…

Watching esports is so much fun. Betting on esports is even more fun as you know you have an investment in the game’s outcome. According to a recent report released by the UK Gambling Commission, the eSports industry marked an incredible year-on-year growth of 2992%. This is massive growth considering that the industry is still new.

Electronic Sports (esports), is a form of video gaming competition. Although video gamers have competed in video games ever since the first gaming home computers came out, the competitions involve money today. You do not have to sit in the same room with your opponent, seeing that there are more than one billion playing one or more forms of online video games.

While some gamers play solo, others compete. These contests attract millions of viewers, which is where esports betting comes in.

Some of the most popular esports games include:

Below is a guide on betting on some of the esports games.

Chess Betting

Chess is one of the oldest and most popular board games in the world. It has been around for centuries, and there are countless books and articles written about it.

Despite its age, chess remains a popular spectator sport, with tournaments drawing large crowds of spectators. And as you might expect, given the amount of money at stake in professional chess tournaments, betting on chess is also a popular activity.

Chess betting is not as widespread as betting on other sports, but there is a dedicated community of chess bettors who love the strategic nature of the game.

Online Chess Betting

Online chess betting is the most convenient way to bet on chess. There are a number of online bookmakers that offer chess betting markets, and most of them also offer live streaming of chess tournaments.

This means that you can watch the action unfold as you place your bets. Some of the most popular online bookmakers for chess betting include Betfair, Unibet, and Paddy Power.

How to Bet on Chess

When you bet on chess, you are essentially betting on the outcome of a match between two players. There are three possible outcomes to a chess match:

  • White wins
  • Black wins
  • Draw

The most common type of bet in chess is the moneyline bet, which is a bet on which player will win the match. For example, if you bet on White to win, and White wins the match, then you will win your bet.

If you bet on Black to win, and Black wins the match, then you will also win your bet. However, if the match ends in a draw, then all bets will be void and all stakes will be returned.

Another popular type of chess bet is the handicap bet. This is a bet where one player starts the match with a disadvantage, but you can still bet on them to win. For example, if you bet on White -1.5, and White wins the match by two or more points, then you will win your bet.

If you bet on Black +1.5, and Black loses the match by two or more points, then you will also win your bet. Handicap bets are often used to even up the odds in matches where one player is a heavy favorite.

Fortnite Betting

The Fortnite Battle Royale attracts more than 125 million players. The concept is simple; the gamers are dropped in a location they do not know, and they have to fight their way out using any means possible.

The players can use rocket launchers, grenades, and many more firearms to fight their opponents. There are millions of people watching the game on Twitch. With the rising desire to watch others play Fortnite, betting on this game has become so popular.

Understand the Fortnite Gameplay

Fortnite is a pretty simple game where players are dropped off on an unknown island and have to survive. As the game progresses, a storm engulfs the map and forces the players to inch closer to each other for a more engaging fight.

At the start of the game, players have no weapons, and need to steal random items from the map. A player can build to keep themselves safe. The game ends when only one player remains.

Fortnite Betting Market

Fortnite is yet to turn into a fully-fledged esport betting title. Granted, the betting options on the game are still limited. The first odds for Fortnite gaming appeared on Pro-AM in 2018. The odd was 10/1.

Betting sites offered an outright win market. In 2019, Epic Games, the developer behind Fortnite, offered a $100,000,000 prize pool for the gamers who will enter the tournament, making the event more thrilling.

You will get bonuses based on the bookmarker you choose. Bonuses can be between 25 and 100 percent of the amount you deposit. There is also a no-deposit bonus with some betting sites for players who need to start betting immediately. You can see these bonuses on the bookmarkers sites.

To bet on the game and win like a pro, you need to watch a few streamers on Twitch and know who to bet for. Top Fortnite players have Twitch accounts where they stream to earn views. Look at the players’ performance, including how many times they fall and the number of kills.

CS:GO Betting

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is a multiplayer game that involves teams of five players on each side. The matches last 15 rounds, and the team that wins the first 16 rounds takes the prize.

Teams can choose to play as terrorists or counter-terrorists. Terrorists need to be successful in one or two bombsites or kill all members of the opposing team. The counter-terrorists need to kill all the terrorists or disarm the bombs to win a round. The action takes place on different maps, and teams have to play a knife round to determine which maps to play and in which order.

Because players work as teams, CS: GO betting works the same as traditional sports betting such as soccer. You can place a bet on win, draw, or lose. Some of the bets you can set include:

  • Money-line bets – This is a bet laced on the results of a single match; say, team A will beat team B.
  • Outright Bets – These are bets on the overall game, say the team that will eventually take the prize.
  • Accumulator Bets – This type consists of several individual bets. The bettor wins if all their predictions are correct. These bets have better odds and higher payouts.
  • Special Bets – These are bets on specific events that may occur during the match.
  • In-play bets – These are placed for you place once a match starts.

The odds for CS:GO are expressed as a fraction. The odds depend on a player’s performance, prior results, and player form. The higher the odds, the more the payout you get. These odds keep changing depending on the teams and the game’s condition.

Dota 2 Betting

A game by Valve Corporation, Dota 2, has been played since 2013. It is a real-time game whose players need a strategy to win. Like CS:GO, the game requires teams of five players on each side.

Each team members controls a hero in the game, and no two players can maintain the same hero. These heroes come with different abilities, strengths, and weaknesses. A team, therefore, must maximize its strengths and minimize weaknesses by working together. The team’s object is to acquire gold to build items that will help enhance their strengths. To do that, the team needs to kill minions and opposing members.

Dota 2 is one of the most advanced esports betting games. The gameplay keeps shifting as the developer introduces new heroes and items. Shifts in the game are determined by the things the heroes wield and how powerful those items are. This way, bettors have higher chances of winning by placing their bets on the underdog teams, which have the opportunity to create better items and win big.

Thanks to the team’s gameplay, bettors can wager as they would in traditional games. Some of the betting options include:

  • Money-line bets – These are wagers on the outcomes of a single match; win, lose, or draw.
  • Outright bets – These are future bets on the overall outcome of the tournament. For instance, you can predict that the USA will produce the winner.
  • Accumulator Bets – Combos bets, as they are known, are bets on several single matches. All the predictions have to be valid for a bettor to win.
  • Special Bets – These are bets on individual events within a match. For instance, you can predict that a particular player will kill or gets killed.
  • Live Bets – This is any bet you place after the game has started.

Like in CS:GO and traditional sports betting, the odds of a bet are determined by the team’s performance in the past, the performance of individual players, and so many other variables.

League of Legends Betting

LoL is a multiplayer game by RIOT Games. You can play one of the many different modes of League of Legends. These modes include all-random-all-mid (ARAM), a 3v3 player mode (Twisted Treeline), or the 5v5 player mode (TheSummoner’s Rift).

The five players’ team mode is the main mode. Here, the players must choose a roster from more than 130 champions to help them carry on their mission. The mission is to destroy the enemy nexus, but players have to kill minions and oppose players to get to the nexus. Each new opponent or minion who dies earns the players gold they can use to purchase items and enhance the powers and abilities of their champions.

A team chooses champions with different abilities. These abilities have to complement each other to enhance the team’s strengths and shun weaknesses. Teams with the best composition of champions have better success rates, but there are many more variants that determine the success rate of the players.

The LoL World Championship Tournament

The LoL World Championship attracts millions of players and viewers. This tournament requires that players are good at their play and team play. The best teams in the world compete with other best teams in the world, and that makes the game exciting and popular. At the end of the tournament, the winning team will get the summoner’s Cup. To enter the tournament, teams need to play for a year to earn points that qualify them to join the competition. Teams then converge in a single location to play in one of the largest esports events in the world.

The gameplay changes as RIOT seeks to make the tournament interesting for the players and the viewers. The champions might change, the maps, the items, and a few others. RIOT also carries out meta shifts, which focus on changing the gameplay entirely. During the metashifts, the players cannot pick the same champions in two consecutive games.

These shifts are significant for bettors as they may choose to bet on underdog teams whose success rate increase with each meta shift. 

Betting options for LoL are the same as traditional games such as soccer. They include:

  • Money-line Bets – Bets on the outcomes of a match
  • Future Bets – Bets on the overall outcome of a tournament
  • Accumulator Bets – Several bets on several matches – the odds here are huge.
  • Special Bets – Bets on specific events that may happen during a game.
  • Live Bets – Bets placed after the game has started

The odds for League of Legends betting keep changing based on the performance of a team in the past, the performance of players, the bookmarker you choose, and so many other factors.

Hearthstone Betting

Hearthstone is a video game of cards. The game by Blizzard Entertainment is between two players where the players take on any of nine different roles, include ng mage, rogue, and warrior, among others. Each of these classes has unique abilities and cards to set them apart.

The players use a deck of cards they collect from their virtual deck of cards. The object of the players is to defeat their opponent. The cards in the deck include weapons, minions, and abilities. Players collect cards when they play the game, defeat opponents, or complete quests. The game is free-to-play, but some players might want to unlock more abilities, and this involves some payment.

During tournaments, players can compete in teams of three players, but the standard gameplay involves a single player against another single player with only two decks of cards.  

How to Bet on Hearthstone

Hearthstone is one of the most popular games in esports, and that makes it an ideal choice to bet on. Professional gamers can make a living when they stream games on Twitch, and the future prize is $1 million.

Besides its popularity, the Blizzard development team made it possible for spectators and bettors to see what the players see, including what’s in the decks and the possible strategies, among others. Better yet, there are commentators for the game to enhance the watching experience.

You can place the following bets on Hearthstone:

  • Match Winner – Here, you predict who will win the match between the two players.
  • Futures Market – Predict the total outcome of the game to win big money. This kind of bet works best for bettors who understand the game well.
  • Handicap – These are special bets when it is clear that one player will win. Here, you can place a bet on the number of games that a player needs to succeed. You can also bet on the underdog player, or team, on their chances to win a few games.
  • Turn Bets – Predict the number of turns in a match, or tournament, to win. Bettors need to understand the game well before they place this kind of a bet. The bets are mainly under or over chances and not bets on a specific number of turns.
  • Special Bets – Special bets are specific in that you can bet which cards appear in a match and which player will compete in a given task first. These bets are high risk, but they pay more.

The real money bets on Hearthstone differ from betting on traditional sports. The odds will depend on so many variants, and different bookmarkers will offer other odds for different players.

Overwatch Betting

Overwatch from Blizzard is a multiplayer game that has elements from all the biggest games in the competitive world. The game offers a roster of heroes with strengths, weaknesses, and abilities. The gamers will control these heroes and execute some tasks to win the game.

During the play, the game focuses on individual ability and teamwork. The game can be played on different modes and different maps. Teams consist of 6 players, and they can choose either of different modes, including Assault, Escort, Hybrid of Assault and Escort, and Control. These modes are available in competitive games. Any player who needs fun modes can play Arcade games such as Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, and Elimination.

Betting Options on Overwatch

Because Overwatch involves teams, the betting options are similar to betting on traditional sports such as soccer and basketball. Granted, bettors can pick from a variety of standard betting options, including:

  • Money-line Bets – These are bets on the outcomes in a single match.
  • Future Markets – Bets on the total outcome of a tournament, including the team that takes the tournament, the teams that battle in the finals, and the region that will produce the winner.
  • Accumulator Bets – These are bets on multiple matches, and all the predictions have to be true for you to win.
  • Live bets – You need to predict the outcome or events within a match after the match has started to win.
  • Special Bets – You predict specific events within a match to win big money. You need to understand the game and the players to make this kind of bet and win.

Similar to all the other games, the odds for the game keeps shifting based on the teams playing, their past success, the success of individual players, and so many other factors.

How to Choose an eSport Betting Site In 2022

Reputation and Security

When dealing with online systems that require you to enter personal details, there is a significant risk that you may end up a victim of identity theft. As such, you need to choose a system that encrypts any data sent over the internet. Start by checking that the URL reads https and not http, as the extras show that the site is secure. You should also check the security badges on the site, such as McAfee and others. Such badges are an indication that the site is secure.

After looking at the signs and promises of security, consider the site’s reputation by checking consumer review sites such as BBB and Consumer Reports. Look at what other bettors say on the bookmarker and make your decision.

Bonuses and Promotions

Bonuses and promotions kickstart your game when you are new to a betting site. Some of the common bonuses include welcome bonuses, no-deposit bonuses, and deposit bonuses. Choose a betting site with at least one of these offers. Again, read the terms of the bonuses to ensure you can use your bonus to play real money games, and withdraw your winnings.

Other promotions include loyalty programs with prizes for loyal customers. You earn these prizes for being with a betting site for a long time. Compare the bonuses and the promotions offered by different sites before deciding.

Payment Methods Available

Do you need an esports betting site that accepts bitcoins, PayPal, credit cards, or any other payment option? Ensure that your bookie supports your preferred method to make it easy for you to deposit cash and cash out your winnings. You also need a site that offers faster payouts to move on to wager on the next game. If you get a bookie that offers all options, choose them as you may need to change your payment method later.

Available Games and Types of Bets

There are more than twenty popular esports. Some bookies allow you to wager on all these sports, while others only offer a few. To bet successfully and in an informed manner, you need to bet on the esports you understand best. Ensure you understand the gameplay, the teams, and the individual players. This way, you can make informed decisions. Ensure the bookie you choose offers the games you understand.

Check the types of bets the bookie offers for a game. For starters, ensure they have the standard bets such as money-line bets, futures market bets, special bets, and accumulator bets. The more the types of bets, the higher your chances of winning.


The odds of a game keep shifting depending on many factors. However, some betting sites generally offer better odds for most games. Odds are represented as fractions or decimals. Your payout will be your wager amount multiplied by the odds. To pick the best betting site, therefore, compare the odds from previous matches and see which bookie wins.

Key Facts about eSports

Although esports is relatively new compared to traditional sports, the industry has developed greatly over the past few years, making it a favorite of many players and spectators. Below are some facts about esports that might interest you.

Attracts More than 205 Million Viewers

At one time, there were more than 205 million viewers from all around the world watching esports competitions. The number has even gone higher as game developers focus their games on esports.

The fact that there are more than a billion people who play video games mean that the number of viewers is also high. The fans relate their gaming experience to the competitions. If you add the bettors to the list of video game fans, you have millions of spectators.

Gamers are Known as Professional Athletes

Gaming is becoming so popular that gamers must travel from one part of the world to the next to play video games. As such, the government recognizes these as professional athletes to facilitate their travels without requiring continuous verification.

The question of whether gamers are professional athletes started when the earnings started bloating, and the US government needed them to declare their earnings. The gamers now have the same taxation and travel rights as NBA and NFL players.

$60+ Million Paid Out in DOTA 2 Tournaments

Dota 2 is one of the most popular esports games, and the game has done a lot for gamers. The game has had more than 600 tournaments. There are so many teams worldwide eyeing the prizes that Dota 2 tournaments bring. Since the Dota 2 tournaments began, the organizers have paid out more than $60 million, and the figure will only continue to grow.

Ginx eSports TV Specializes on eSports for 24 Hours

Given the rising popularity of esports, it was only a matter of time before a special esports channel came up, and the first one was Ginx. The channel has garnered millions of viewers from around the world and is an excellent platform for bettors to familiarize themselves with the teams and the players. It tracks competitions and shows them live.

More than 800 Million Viewing Hours for Favorite Games

Twitch is the place where gamers stream their videos. The platform is to thank for most of the popularity of esports. Viewers on Twitch can interact with their favorite gamers and show their support to the streaming platform. By the end of 2018, the platform has garnered more than 800 million viewing hours, making esports so popular.

The USA Leading with the Highest Earners

Players from the USA, South Korea, and China are at the top of the earning pool. The USA is dominating the winnings, with players earning more than $37 million as of 2018. Although the figure splits among many players, it still shows where the gamers are. The US is getting stiff competition from players from other nations such as Canada and Australia.

Single Largest Prize Pool was $18 Million

There have been multiple tournaments worldwide in the UK and the US. Cumulatively, these tournaments have had hundreds of millions of dollars in prizes. However, the largest single pool was for $18 million. The winning team took home $6 million, which went to five players.

Gaming Teams From Large Brands Starting to Come Up

With the rise in the popularity of esports and esports betting, it was only a matter of time before world-renowned teams and players came up. In a way, this helps the bettors as they can study the teams and the players and make the best betting decisions.

Large companies are already building teams, and the teams are joining recognized soccer teams such as Manchester United and Valencia FC. The number of betting sites has also increased, which is a good thing for bettors.

Skin & Item Betting

Skin Betting is the same as item betting. It is a type of betting that has become so popular with esports fans. Video games today offer virtual currencies and so many other items that players can exchange. These items are collectibles among players who love the game. Granted, the sites can provide players with a chance to auction, trade, buy, sell, and exchange items and virtual currencies.

Some betting sites allow players to use the items and the virtual currencies to place bets. As a bettor, you can use the items from the video to bet on your favorite video games. These items act as a replacement for real money. They are also ideal for other forms of gambling. On some sites, these items can replace real money when playing games such as roulette.

On other sites, the skins are used in jackpot games. Here, all the skins are put in a pot, and one winner takes home all the skins. The winner is chosen at random. This is a high-risk and high-reward game you can use when you need to earn more skins than you already have.

Esport betting: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Where can I Bet on eSports?

You can place your esports bets online on popular betting sites. If you search”esports betting site” today, you will have tens of sites as the best. Some websites are better than others for certain games as they offer better odds and more types of bets. Take your time to pick the right bookie, and you will have the best gambling experience.

Which Games Can I Bet On?

There is more than thirty popular esports that you can bet on. They include Overwatch, Dota 2, League of Legends, Starcraft II, Rainbow 6, Valorant, and many more. Although you can bet on all these, the best game is one you understand the most. There is not much difference between esports betting and traditional sports betting. The better you know the game and the players, the easier it is for you to make a betting decision that will give you returns. Study the game, the teams, and the players.

How do you watch eSports Online?

Try Twitch and the esports channel Ginx. Some betting platforms also stream live games. Other gaming platforms stream live video games as the action unfolds. If you need to watch the League of Legends game online, check with the gaming site on how to manage the action.

Can I Bet on esports with Bitcoin?

Not all bookies accept Bitcoin, but a few do. Search for bookies that accept Bitcoin and bet with them.

What Kind of Bonuses and Promotions Do I Get?

Bonuses and promotions are specific to betting sites. Some sites will offer more bonuses and promotions than others. However, most places provide welcome bonuses and deposit bonuses. You can use the rewards to stake on real money games, but you cannot withdraw the bonuses. Most sites only allow you to withdraw the earnings from the bonuses. You will also enjoy loyalty bonuses such as VIP bonuses for players loyal to a bookie.

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