Is age a big factor in esports?
Considering the relative nascency of the esports industry, the sight of old professional gamers is bizarre for a lot of us. We are so used to seeing young adults, teenagers, and sometimes even kids appear on the competitive stage and it is perhaps due to video games being perceived as the realm of youths. Likely due to this, players in their late-20's are already expected to start considering retirement from competitive play. With younger and younger players, like the 15-year-old Brit Jaden Ashman, who won the Fortnite World Cup, bringing down the average age of players, it has left us questioning whether older players belong in competitive esports.
Perhaps this trend is not too surprising considering that not too long ago, video games were mostly meant for kids and teenagers. However, in 2021, video games and consequently esports have become the primary choice of entertainment for many people across all ages. Surprisingly, in esports, we truly only see the younger generation of pro players dominate the scene across various titles like League of Legends, Dota 2, Valorant, CS:GO and more. As the year goes by and the young adult pro players grow into their late 20's, we witness many of them retiring or just fade away, losing their touch. A lot of us would be quick to jump on blaming their age as to the reason they can’t compete professionally like they did before, but how true is this assumption?
In this article we discuss the influence of age in esports, the benefits for younger and older players and we have also acquired a couple of first-hand insights from veteran Dota 2 player, Chai "Mushi" Yee Fung.