- The Commonwealth Games Federation has decided to include esports in its program
- A few unannounced titles will be played at the event although they will not be officially considered as medal sports yet
- The federation’s president hopes to bridge the gap between sports and esports and appeal to the younger audiences
The Commonwealth Games Federation will include several esports titles in the 2022 edition of the Commonwealth Games.
Esports at the Commonwealth Games
Esports continues its rise as a widely-acknowledged competitive discipline. The Commonwealth Games Federation just announced that it will include certain gaming titles in the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
The elite sporting event is scheduled to begin on July 28 and continue through August 8. Although it will see a few esports games included in the program, the exact titles are yet to be announced. It is still unknown whether the CGF will pick the most popular esports games or whether it will opt for sports simulation games as the Olympic Committee did in 2021.
Despite being recognized as an elite competitive discipline, esports will not be played as official medal sports yet. The reason is that this will be the first time gaming has been a part of the Commonwealth Games.
The inaugural launch of esports at the event will see the discipline with its own organization, management, and branding. Despite not being officially recognized as medal sports, esports will still provide its winners with medals for their achievements.
Depending on how esports fare, they might get included in the Commonwealth Games’ official roster of medal sports by 2026, the federation’s president Dame Louise Martin said.
The CGF Wants to Appeal to the Youth
The inclusion was first teased in December and has not been very popular among some of the most fervent fans of traditional sports. Despite that, Martin is firm that the federation will not backtrack on its decision as it believes that adding esports is an important step to appealing to the youth. She explained:
“Esports is continuing to grow dramatically in terms of popularity and participation, particularly amongst young people, and we are continuing to look at ways to explore how it can align with the Commonwealth Sports Movement.”
Martin added that the federation will aim for a long-term relationship between the Commonwealth Games and esports and will seek a way to organically bring the two closer together.
Even though esports is still not welcomed by certain groups of people, it continues to grow as a competitive discipline. Many sports clubs have warmed up towards the idea of esports with some of the biggest names in football and basketball investing in gaming. It is exciting to follow the developments in esports as it slowly carves its way into the mainstream.