Over the past decade the Esports industry has experienced phenomenal growth, gaining not only big brand sponsorship but also hundreds of thousand of fans and spectators.
Just take for example, last year’s DOTA 2 world finals (2016). It was reported that the prize money for the winners was a whopping USD $9 million, from an astonishing prize pool totaling USD $20 million. It hosted at a packed KeyArena in Seattle, and attracted well over 17,000 paying spectators. What’s more, it was also broadcast live via streaming site – Twitch and other platforms, further gaining a further 4 million viewers!
By the way I forgot to mention, this is just for one game – DOTA 2. Other games such as CSGO, Street Fighter, FIFA, Overwatch and many others, have their own leagues, fan base following and sponsors. The total worth of the Esports industry is predicted to reach somewhere between USD $800 million to $1 billion.
Now that I’ve given you a little insight in to the Esports industry, you’re probably wondering what’s this got to do with modding. So let me bring these two together … Esports and Modding!
Well, believe it or not, before Esports became today’s phenomenon … in the mid 90’s LAN parties was its precursor. And it was the place where gamers would gather, bringing their own gaming PCs. These LAN parties/events still exist today, such as Insomnia (UK), PDXLAN (US), Dreamscape (Sweden)… and let me tell you, it’s quite an eye-opener.
If you’ve got a decent modded PC … what better place to show off your rig than in a LAN party! These LAN parties are one of the earliest places you’ll find modded PCs. I know… because I was one of those guys who did it. Oops I give my age away hahaha lol!
Looks or Performance?
Modding PCs wasn’t just about making your PC look good at a LAN party. Some of the early professional gamers needed to squeeze every extra performance out of their system … to them, every frame rate counts! So in order to do this, they would add extra fans to cool their system (of course they would use LED fans to make it look pretty!) While others would go the whole hog and add water/liquid cooling to their system. Other aesthetic mods would include sleeved cables, side panel with window and cold cathode tubes (colored).
Now let’s take a look at some of the mods at those LAN parties and eSports events …
PDXLAN 28 Event
EMF 2017 Hong Kong eSports event
A great looking watercooled system by Cooler Master at the Zotac pop-store at the EMF 2017 Hong Kong eSports event.
Mods displayed at the Cooler Master Booth at Computex 2017
The Star Wars Box by Alberto Soares
A couple of mods by Edwin De Catalina
Another mod by Edwin De Catalina
One crazy (unique) mod by Fred Sant
A great looking mod by Jason Pierce