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The Evolution of eSports: From Niche Pastime to Global Championships



OVER the past couple of decades, gaming has gone through a massive change. It was one of the best pastime activities, and it managed to evolve into a professional sport. The road was very long, and it took the whole industry for a rollercoaster ride filled with excitement. Today, this massive industry generates billions of dollars for companies and players as well. In this article, we’re going to examine how gaming has evolved into esports today.

The Emergence of eSports: From Casual Beginnings to Competitive Play

Gaming immediately started with the birth of computers. It was in the 50s and 60s that it all started, but it took a lot of time to grow. Back then, computers were a shock to civilization, and it took decades for them to come into the mainstream light. But as soon as they became more popular, the gaming scene followed. 

While it was a pastime activity for millions of people over the years, it quickly became competitive. That’s why players always look for different ways of getting an edge over their opponents. No matter the industry, players found various ways of improving their chances of winning. Even with online casino gaming today, players seek out the best deposit bonus on the Gamblizard website, as it’s one of the most reputable places to find quality offers. When it comes to other esport games, this means getting the best PCs, top-notch internet connections, and high refresh-rate monitors.

So many concepts we see in modern games today were set in stone in the 80s when competitive gaming grew in popularity.

But before players turned to PCs, arcades were the first homes to tournaments. The first form of competition came in the form of score lists. Players with the highest scores would take a spot in the list. Among the popular titles are Pong and Space Invaders. However, there are many other arcades that were immensely popular in the 70s and 80s. Many games today feature lists as a form to show the best players. Take online casinos, for example. After you claim a Duelz casino bonus, you can see the list of winners on the platform. This makes players more competitive as they want to potentially win higher amounts of money and end up on the list. Additionally, casino game tournaments have players compete for a set period of time. The winners are players who end up in the top three spots on the list.

eSports Goes Mainstream: The Turning Point in Popularity

Gaming, in general, went mainstream during the 2000s and 2010s. This is the golden era for gaming as it spread like wildfire to the online world. Internet connectivity became much better during these two decades, allowing players to share their gaming adventures. Platforms such as Twitch and YouTube became places where gaming content creators started building communities. While some were exploring, other competitive players were building followers as they decimated their opponents.

As more eyes were turning to these platforms, sponsors started showing up, ready to help tournaments grow. Even the top tournaments started hosting streams, where millions of fans started watching the best players compete. The gaming scene truly started looking like professionally competitive surroundings.

Building the eSports Ecosystem: Leagues, Teams, and Players 

The eSports ecosystem is huge today, but it took some time to grow steadily. It started with a couple of tournaments throughout the year for massively popular games like Counter-Strike. Another popular game was StarCraft from Blizzard Entertainment. The change came with DotA and League of Legends. These games were so massively popular that year-round leagues were created for different world regions. In the end, the best players would clash in the finishing tournament to show who’s the best.

Today, there are several important leagues to consider:

  • Overwatch League
  • League of Legends Championship Series
  • Rocket League Championship Series
  • PUBG Championship Series

The development of these leagues gave birth to hundreds of esports teams around the globe. As thousands of players have joined this space, some managed to achieve legendary status in the esports scene, earning millions of dollars.

From Local Events to International Spectacles: Evolution of eSports Tournaments

Before broadband Internet offered low latency and high speeds, tournaments were more of local events with smaller prize pools. However, the size of the tournaments followed the growth of gaming popularity. Tournaments became country-specific at first but quickly grew to international events. Before you knew it, every continent had one huge tournament which attracted thousands of visitors.

The top events worth mentioning are:

  • Dota 2 The International
  • League of Legends World Championship
  • CS:GO Major Championships
  • Fortnite World Cup
  • Valorant Champions Tour
  • PUBG Global Championship

Of course, none of these would become as popular without the popularity of streaming websites such as YouTube, Twitch, and Kick.

Challenges and Opportunities: The Future of eSports

The only challenge that eSports is going through is related to the health of the top players. In order to remain at the top, players start playing early and spend up to 16 hours per day playing games. As you can imagine, this has a negative impact on their health. It remains a challenge that the industry needs to tackle in the future.

Other than that, esports is a competitive landscape that gives equal chances to all its players. Inclusivity and diversity are important in esports. Overall, it’s safe to say that esports is yet to continue evolving. It has grown tremendously over the years, but there’s more room for growth. We’ll see how the growth of VR will affect the industry. These new technologies might change the way people compete. Mobile phones have already shown that, as PUBG is already hosting mobile-only tournaments.


Gaming has become an important part of popular culture around the world. It’s now the biggest part of the entertainment industry, surpassing even movies in terms of revenue. Younger generations continue showing more interest in games. Therefore, the whole industry and esports will likely continue evolving in the years to come.Author Bio: Leslie Alexander is a content lead at Gamblizard with years of experience in the iGaming industry. When she’s not researching the latest iGaming trends, Leslie enjoys spending time with her friends or reading. Board games are her passion in her spare time.

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BBC Cymru Wales unwraps cracking content for the Christmas period



BBC Cymru Wales will be unwrapping their Christmas schedule this month with a whole host of new festive content to get everyone in the Christmas mood across TV, iPlayer and Sounds.

At at the heart of this year’s Christmas television schedule is a spectacular homecoming Christmas concert with Katherine Jenkins OBE, the biggest selling UK classical artist of the century. From Swansea Arena, Christmas with Katherine Jenkins will include special guests, surprise duets, enchanting carols and heart-warming moments. She will be joined on-stage by Welsh acting royalty Michael Sheen, songwriter Jack Savoretti, opera singer and Masterchef champion Wynne Evans and pianist Chloe Flower.

A new drama, made in Wales, is at the centre of the BBC One Christmas schedule this year.  Starring Iwan Rheon, Steffan Rhodri, Paul Rhys, Phaldut Sharma and Mark Lewis Jones, Men Up is a film exploring the lives of five ordinary Welshmen who embark on an extraordinary journey when they take part in the trial of a new drug which would later become Viagra. 

Alongside the film is a new documentary, Keeping It Up: The Story of Viagra, telling the remarkable true story of one of the world’s first medical trials for the drug, held in Swansea’s Morriston Hospital in 1994. From Wales to New York, this is the big story of the little blue pill. This will be available to watch on iPlayer.

Another gift in the Christmas TV schedule is Max Boyce at 80 – a celebration of Wales’ beloved comedian and entertainer. Max celebrated two major milestones in 2023 – his 80th birthday and 50 years on stage and the programme is a mix of documentary and performance with a new interview with Eleri Sion reflecting on his life and career.

Audiences will also be treated to two Rewind: 60 Years of Welsh Pop specials, the first being a Shirley Bassey Special, reliving the Tiger Bay singer’s career-defining moments. Spanning seven decades the programme features some of her most iconic performances, including her legendary run at Talk of the Town nightclub, and her performance at the Glastonbury Festival.  The second, a Christmas Special featuring some Welsh festive favourites from child stars Aled Jones and Charlotte Church, Shakin’ Stevens, Tom Jones and the Flying Picketts.

In true Boxing Day tradition, Scrum V Live’s festive fixture on BBC Two Wales, will be the Cardiff v Dragons derby from Cardiff Arms Park. Then on January 1st old rivalries come to a head as Ospreys take on Cardiff bringing in the new year from the Brewery Field in Bridgend.  Presenter Sarra Elgan will be joined in the studio by former Wales internationals James Hook, Josh Navidi and Tom Shanklin.  Expert commentary will be provided by Gareth Rhys Owen and Sean Holley, with Polly James and Lauren Jenkins reporting pitchside.  The Scrum V Podcast will be keeping those who love rugby up to date during the festive season, available on BBC Sounds.

On radio, BBC Radio Wales will be celebrating Christmas in style with an array of programmes and their presenters will be entertaining the nation over the festive period.  Listeners will be treated to new programmes such as Owain’s 12 Drummers Drumming, with Owain Wyn Evans, and Bronwen Lewis’ Christmas concert.  For listeners stuck in a rut with Christmas cooking Monmouthshire chef and Saturday Kitchen Star, Matt Tebbutt’s Christmas Kitchen offers inspiration for festive treats to wow family and friends.  Other stars in the festive line-up include Mark ‘The Beast’ Labbett hosting the Radio Wales Christmas Quiz and Taulupe Faletau in A Tongan Christmas.  Listeners can catch all of the programmes live on Radio Wales or listen on-demand via BBC Sounds.

On Welsh language station BBC Radio Cymru, Elin Fflur a’r Gerddorfa showcases an evening of great music accompanied by the National Orchestra of Wales and presented by Tudur Owen.  Fun panel quiz show Chwalu Pen is back for a festive edition and special programme, Alaw Mair will weave together the history of the popular Christmas song with personal stories from some modern day mothers. Crowning the festive celebrations, Trystan and Emma will create a special Christmas single with some very special guests – pop group Pheena.

Online during December, BBC Cymru Fyw will have some festive articles, from book-buying guides for your loved ones to Gareth y Mwnci sharing some of his Christmas memories.  On Swyn y Sul, four of BBC Radio Cymru’s presenters will come together to answer questions about the festive period along with a special BBC Cymru Fyw quiz – Who’s the Celeb Behind Santa’s Beard?

Broadcast details

Christmas with Katherine Jenkins

  • Saturday, 23 December, BBC Two and BBC One Wales, 7:10pm

Max Boyce at 80

  • Friday, 15 December, BBC One Wales, 8pm

Rewind: 60 Years of Welsh Pop: Shirley Bassey Special

  • Friday, 22 December, BBC One Wales, 9.30pm

Rewind: 60 Years of Welsh Pop: Christmas Special

  • Saturday 23 December, BBC One Wales, 6.45pm

Christmas with Katherine Jenkins

  • Saturday, 23 December, BBC Two and BBC One Wales 7.10pm

Scrum V Live: Cardiff v Dragons

  • Tuesday, 26 December, BBC Two Wales, 2.45pm

Men Up

  • Friday, 29 December, BBC One and BBC One Wales, 9pm

Scrum V Live: Cardiff v Ospreys

  • New Year’s Day, BBC One Wales, 2.40pm

BBC Radio Wales

Owain’s 12 Drummers Drumming

  • Available on BBC Sounds from Saturday 9 December and on BBC Radio Wales on Christmas Day at 3pm

A Tongan Christmas

  • Monday, December 18 at 6.30pm

Bronwen’s Christmas Concert

  • Saturday, December 23 at 1pm and repeated on Christmas Day at 4pm

Matt Tebbutt’s Christmas Kitchen

  • Christmas Eve at 1pm

The Radio Wales Christmas Quiz

  • Christmas Eve at 3pm

BBC Radio Cymru / Radio Cymru 2

Alaw Mair

  • Thursday, December 21 at 5:30pm

Elin Fflur a’r Gerddorfa

  • Friday, December 9 at 5:30pm

Chwalu Pen

  • Friday, December 22 at 5:30pm

For further images please access the following link: 

BBC Wales Christmas 2023 – Dropbox

Issued by BBC Cymru Wales Communications

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Pembrokeshire’s Annwn recognised as one of world’s top restaurants



NARBETH restaurant Annwn has received the latest in a string of accolades: inclusion on the prestigious worldwide restaurant selection, La Liste.

The illustrious guide, based in Paris, uses reviews, guidebooks and chef’s recommendations to formulate a score out of 100. Annwn scored 90 which places it well up the thousand-strong list.

Annwn’s chef patron Matt Powell says he is delighted with the result.

“I was just looking through the list on Thursday morning when it came out. I wasn’t expecting to be on it at all, and then all of a sudden there we were,” he said. “It was mind blowing really.”

Annwn is an intimate space with only ten covers where each diner gets to experience the theatre of Matt cooking his dishes in an open kitchen, which are then served at the table by Matt himself, assisted by his partner Naomi.

Many of the ingredients used are foraged from Pembrokeshire’s shoreline and countryside. The menu changes throughout the seasons, reflecting the diversity of the local Welsh ecosystem and the quality of local suppliers. Local lamb, lobster, prawns and sewin all make an appearance throughout the year.

Matt is a staunch supporter of Welsh ingredients and a keen student of historic Welsh cuisine.

” My goal has always been to put Annwn on the world stage and to be recognised as a Welsh restaurant that is striving to reinvent Welsh cuisine – to look at our past and food history, to ask questions,” he says. “For me it’s all about studying these old traditions. To learn, recreate and refine.

Annwn was located at Lawrenny from September 2021 until September 2022, during which time it was named as number 14 in the Good Food Guide’s 20 Most Exciting Restaurants.

On May 12 the restaurant opened its doors in a new home in Narberth, where it has since been awarded a place in the Michelin Guide.

Matt says inclusion in La Liste is the icing on the cake.

“To make this start on such a solid base and to be named among the great chefs and restaurants in the world is just amazing,” he says.

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Sandford award puts Castell Henllys at the top of the class



CASTELL HENLLYS Iron Age Village has been awarded with a coveted Sandford Award for the fifth time.

The popular visitor attraction, which is run by the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority and aims to bring the world of our ancient ancestors to life, is one of only five sites in Wales to be awarded this accreditation for its education programme.

The Sandford Award scheme was established in 1975 to encourage those responsible for running historic houses to appreciate their important educational role, and to provide support and monitor standards. It is currently managed by the Heritage Education Trust in partnership with Bishop Grosseteste University and is an independently judged, quality assured assessment of education programmes at heritage sites, museums, archives and collections across the British Isles.

Owen Edwards, Manager of Castell Henllys, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have won this prestigious award again. Over the years, a visit to Castell Henllys has almost become a rite of passage for schoolchildren in South-West Wales. The fact that we are one of only five Welsh sites to secure this accreditation this year bears testament to the hard work that staff put into the experience.

“Special thanks go to our Events and Activities Leader, Liz Moore, and to Liz Rooney, who carries out all the admin for school trips, along with all the staff that take part in the schools programme.”

Castell Henllys offers a range of exciting and immersive learning experiences for visiting schools, offering young people the chance to travel back in time with costumed interpreters and learn all about the Iron Age way of life in a fun, entertaining and memorable way. Sessions are also available on the Stone Age, Romans and Vikings, along with a Literary and Language session based on the Mabinogion.

For further information about the education programme at Castell Henllys, visit

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