In the last few decades, sports betting has been the primary form of entertainment and gambling in the Philippines. Thanks to the Filipino’s passion for basketball including the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA), boxing, and cockfighting in different provinces, sports betting is alive and well. The popularity is even boosted by the increasing penetration of mobile phone use and the internet which helps popularize online sports betting among enthusiasts and casual fans. With these technologies, players and sports fans can now conveniently follow the games and participate in in-play betting if they want to. But there’s another trend that’s pushing the popularity of sports betting in the Philippines to a new level: eSports, particularly betting on Defense of the Ancients or DOTA. Today, a conversation on sports betting is not complete without discussing the popular game of DOTA and how this sport is changing the Philippines gaming landscape.
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How DOTA 2 is Played
Defense of the Ancients (DOTA) was first released in 2013 and was designed as a multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) wherein teams are tasked to destroy their opponent’s ‘Ancient’, a structure that can be found on the other corner of the playing map. To arrive at this end, the team (and its players) will use units known as heroes which can be upgraded through the use of in-game resources. A popular version of the game that’s played in the Philippines is DOTA 2 which retains much of the gameplay and objective and played between two teams which counts up to 5 players each. Each participant to the game has a ‘hero’ that he can control, assigned with unique skills and capabilities. Just like in the original game, the team who can first destroy the heavily-guarded structure (called the ‘Ancient’) wins the match.
DOTA 3 and the Growth of eSports in the Philippines
Before DOTA, eSports in the country during the early 2000s was in its infancy, with games like Counter-Strike and Ragnarok dominating the game shops. During this time, the gaming shops and hubs were dominated by amateurs and casual fans who simply love playing the games with friends and co-workers. During this time, the games were considered as a form of entertainment and a hobby that was not taken seriously then.
This changed when DOTA 2 was taken seriously by fans and enthusiasts and a team from the Philippines took out a major team at the International DOTA 2 Championship in the United States in 2016. That team was TNC Gaming, and they also represented Southeast Asia when they booted out the European favorite team OG. The following year, the team took collected Php 18 million for its participation in another tournament. The latest achievement happened in 2019 when TNC Predator collected the top prize worth $500,000 when it defeated a Chinese team at the World Electronic Sports Games (WESG) in Chongqing, China.
The professionalization of DOTA 2 and the increasing penetration of the internet and smartphones help push eSports into mainstream consciousness. Today, no sports betting hub in the Philippines cannot be considered complete without complete coverage of eSports, particularly DOTA. And according to some estimates, the eSports market is now worth $19 billion (2019), with the Philippines helping drive the growth of this niche in sports betting.
Where Can You Place Your Bets on eSports
Today, eSports is a popular niche in sports betting covering different events. Some of the popular events that you can follow and bet on are Counter-strike, Fortnite, NBA 2K, and DOTA. Of all these eSports, DOTA 2 is considered the most popular in the Philippines, and its popularity is driven by professionals who compete internationally. The popularity of these games also opened up different types of bets focused on the eSports platform. If you are planning to bet on this event, you can choose from a number of bet types. Some of the popular bets that you can make on DOTA 2 are Money Line, Totals, and the Outright markets. Of the popular bets to make, the outcome of the match is the most common. This type of bet is often the choice of many sports betting fans who follow different leagues and events like The International and World Electronic Sports Games (WESG).
In betting on eSports like DOTA 2, the same rules and parameters in sports betting should be applied. For example, the choice of a DOTA 2 betting site should always be based on the license, security, and the availability of the best support for players. As a player, you only want a stress-free experience when it comes to following the games and betting on the outcomes. If possible, look for a DOTA 2 betting site that also offers the best bonuses for players. By considering these parameters, you can fully enjoy the sports betting experience, and partake in the victories of your chosen team in an exciting and lucrative manner.