Best eSports Documentaries
About a decade ago, eSports was still a novice concept to most people. Many people did not see the difference between the now fully fledged sport and gaming. Today, however, eSports is an industry worth billions of dollars, and it continues to grow by the day.
So, what sets eSports apart and makes it so popular? There are many answers to that question, and you can find them all in the following eSports documentaries regarded as the best.
1 – A New Hero: The Rise of College eSports
A New Hero: The Rise of College eSports is credited with contributing to the rise of eSports. It is also one of the best documentaries in many respects. It was recorded and produced by ESPN in a deal that was dubbed lucrative and exceptional.
This documentary is about a group of college students who rose to the top ranks of eSports in spite of numerous challenges and a dismissive attitude from most people. The four students, dubbed The Heroic Four, achieved great success, fame, and considerable monetary rewards from their endeavors. The documentary also captured the attitudes and opinions of gamers and fans from all over the world, hence showing just how big the eSports industry is.
2 – Free to Play
This is a documentary about the everyday lives of three professional gamers from diverse walks of life. The three gamers are Benedict Lim, Clinton Loomis, and Danil Ishutin, and this documentary was filmed before the first Dota 2 International Tournament. These gamers are popular in gaming circles, so they were considered ideal for an insight into a professional gamer’s life. The documentary shows both the positive and negative aspects of adopting gaming as a career. It shows the fun in gaming while also revealing the many sacrifices that professional gamers often make.
Free to Play dismisses the misconceptions that professional gaming is all about sitting around and getting high. It helps bring respect to the eSports industry.
3 – The Foreigner
The Foreigner is a thrilling documentary that documents one of the most exciting moments in the eSports industry. It is about the heated competition that was witnessed during the StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty Tournament, which was held in Columbus, Ohio, in 2012.
That particular tournament was dominated by four professional gamers from South Korea: Moon, SlayersMMA, Losira, and OGS MC. Standing in their way to victory was IDRA, an American player who went to extreme lengths to ensure the title remained on American soil. What followed was a show of gaming prowess and mental and emotional will. Without a doubt, The Foreigner is one of the most thrilling eSports documentaries.
4 – League of Millions
The League of Millions eSports documentary is inspired by the League of Legends, one of the best and biggest eSports yet. This eSport broke many records, some of which are still intact today. For starters, it minted more than $1.7 billion from microtransactions in 2016 alone. It also attracted more than 14 million fans during its peak.
The League of Millions documentary gives an insight into how this particular eSport changed professional gaming and took it to the bank. It particularly focuses on Team Liquid, the team that won the 2015 World Championship and inspired many upcoming gamers.
5 – All Work All Play
This eSports documentary is particularly ideal for budding gamers seeking to make a career off their favorite activity. As the title suggests, it reveals that professional gaming is more than just about fun and the thrill of gaming.
The documentary follows diverse gamers and looks into the struggles and pleasures of professional gaming. It particularly focuses on the challenges of professional gaming as it tries to show just what it takes to be the best in the industry. That said, it is also inspirational considering that it was produced with the main aim of luring more talented gamers into the eSports industry. However, it can be intimidating for those who may have a lax idea of what professional gaming is all about.
6 – eSports Superstars
If you are into professional gaming and do not mind some philosophy, then eSports Superstars will prove engaging. This documentary was produced by The Economist. As expected, it is more about the figures than the thrill of professional gaming.
This documentary studies Cloud 9, the winners of the Dota 2 International tournament. It asks critical questions, such as whether professional gamers deserve the fame and popularity that comes with the job, and how the industry has grown so huge (money-wise) in such a short period. This documentary just goes to show how serious the eSports industry is.
7 – The Super Gamers
The Super Gamers is another eSports documentary that seeks to show just how serious and demanding professional gaming is. This one is set in Britain and focuses solely on the British sector.
This documentary is about the life of three professional gamers named Greensheep, KaSing, and Impaler. It follows them as they prepare for an upcoming eSports tournament and seeks to show what it takes to be a good professional gamer. The players studied in this particular documentary practice at least 12 hours a day ahead of the tournament and sacrifice many precious things, including their close relationships. It also shows virtues, such as tolerance, patience, and diligence. All these values go to show just how serious the industry is in spite of the misconceptions and misunderstandings that still linger today.
8 – The Celebrity Millionaires of Competitive Gaming
The Celebrity Millionaires of Competitive Gaming breaks from most of the other documentaries in this list. It is all about the perks that come with professional gaming in a multibillion-dollar industry. It is directed and presented by Matt Shea, the host of Vice.
This documentary is set in South Korea, the biggest eSports hub in Asia and one of the biggest in the world. It studies the fame and popularity that successful professional gamers enjoy. It also quantifies their rewards. It is important to note that this documentary was produced in 2014, and the rewards of professional gaming have increased dramatically since then.
9 – King of Chinatown
King of Chinatown was one of the first eSports documentaries. It was released in 2012 but focuses on Street Fighter IV, a gaming sensation that was very popular back in the 1990s.
The documentary follows a Chinese professional gamer named Justin Wong in his efforts to rise to the top of the industry and enjoy the hefty perks that come with the profession. It captures both positive and negative elements of the career while also serving as an inspiration for up-and-coming gamers.
10 – MTV True Life: I’m a Gamer
MTV True Life: I’m a Gamer was the first eSports documentary and still ranks among the best today. It was produced and presented by MTV in 2003 when eSports was still a budding industry.
This documentary is responsible for introducing the world to professional gaming. One of its scenes is about a couple of players competing for $200, an insignificant prize considering the millions of dollars at stake nowadays. One of its greatest lessons is that professional gaming is not just about the money. It would be ideal for anyone interested in the industry because it is a testament to how far eSports has come.
An energy industry consultant who spends a lot of time on North Sea oil rigs and conducting studies in and around the Arctic Circle. Sean started playing online casino games to compensate for long periods of boredom. In no time he turned from casual player to fan to fanatic and has since made it his mission to study the online casino universe from the players perspective. As a regular participant and contributor to Rick’s Picks, Sean sits in the Rick’s Picks advisory board and oversees our review team.
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