World of Warcraft (WoW) is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) which was designed, developed and created by Blizzard Entertainment. It was released on November 23, 2004, and it instantly became a huge hit in the gaming world. It is the fourth release of the series of games which play out in the imaginary Warcraft universe. In the years which followed since its initial release there were many subsequent expansion sets. Today, World of Warcraft is the most-subscribed MMORPG in the history of games.
When you start playing the game you first must create a character for yourself which is called a hero. This is the avatar which you will be playing with in the game and it can be from one of the various races and classes. This character is used to explore various places of the map, to fight different monsters, to complete missions (called quests), and to interact with other players as well as with in-game characters. With time these characters develop and acquire different skills and abilities. In addition to this, characters have the option to choose two main professions such as making jewels, skinning, mining, tailoring, as well as four other secondary skills such as cooking, fishing, first aid and archaeology.
Each player has the option to go on quests on his own, however, players group together for most of the game because interaction is one of the key components in World of Warcraft, and in addition, problem solving is often much easier when done in groups. This type of game mode is called Player versus Environment (PVE).
When it comes to World of Warcraft as an eSport In World of Warcraft however, the focus is on the Arena Player versus Player (PVP) system. This is a tournament format, which allows for matches to be played out in specifically controlled environments. These battles are in three different formats - with two, three or five player in each opposing team. The winners of matches boost their team rating and earn much needed Arena Points.
There are four different types of Wow bets available to punters. These include bets from the match winners betting market, handicap market, futures or outright winners market, and from the specials market. These are the standard types of bets available for punters when it comes to multiple online battle arena (MOBA) video games, and they also apply to an (MMORPG) game such as World of Warcraft, but only in the PVP mode. Bets on the PVE mode have also been made available recently, but they are not as popular as the PVP ones.
The easiest type of betting market to understand is the match winners market. In it, punters choose which of the two teams will come out of the match as a winner. One of the teams is usually the favourite, and therefore is given shorter odds, whereas one of the teams is considered as an underdog and is given longer odds. Let’s look at an example from a match from the 2016 WoW Arena Championship Finals which will help us illustrate this.
In this match, the future champions of WoW’s most elite tournament, Splyce, faced Panda Gaming. The obvious favourite in this duel was the 2015 and 2016 WoW champion and as a result they were given pretty low odds which didn’t bring much of a profit, but guaranteed that you will have a winning bet. At the end of the match Splyce won emphatically 3:0 and justified the favourite tag.
The handicap market is similar to the match winner market. However, it has one small difference which makes it a little more interesting for betting enthusiasts. This difference is the starting advantage of +1.5 or +2.5 which is given to one of the teams. Let’s use the same match-up between Splyce and Panda Gaming to illustrate the small difference which exists between the match winners market and the handicap market. In the match winners market, Splyce’s odds for winning the match were1.40 and Panda Gaming’s chances were 2.75. However, once the bookies gave a starting advantage of +1.5 points for Panda Gaming, the odds changed, and now Splyce was no longer the favourite for the win and had odds of 1.90, which were very similar to Panda Gaming’s odds of 1.80.
In addition to these two markets, punters also regularly turn to the futures market, where they can predict the winner of a specific tournament before it has started, and the specials market. The specials market is particularly interesting because it includes some very game specific bets such as Correct Score or Number of Kills (Over/Under) which only a true WoW aficionado will be able to get right.
As with all other eSports, or any sport for that matter, it is always paramount that you analyze various different aspects of the game before you indulge in betting. One of the first things which you should do is look for teams which have been performing at a very high standard for many years in a row. This might be a little difficult for the average punter who has never tried betting on World of Warcraft, but luckily, we are here to help and suggest some teams. For example, it is always a smart thing to wager your money on a team such as Splyce - a consecutive winner of the Arena World Championship; Method NA - a team which came in second in the same tournament in 2016; or some other high ranking teams such as SK Gaming, Nihlum or Against All Authority.
In addition to this, punters who want to be successful should also focus on some other aspects of betting, such as the form of a team coming into a match, or its previous encounters with the opponent they are facing. This is important because a team which is in good form is also high on confidence and is a much better option for a winning bet than a team which has lost several consecutive games on the trot.
Finally, a serious punter, should not only analyze team results and statistics, but should also do a little research regarding the style of play each team has adopted and how harmonious a team is. This is crucial as a team which functions as one complete unit will always come out on top when facing a team in which individuals want to be in the limelight.
The biggest tournament when it comes to the World of Warcraft gaming community and fans is the WoW Arena World Championship Finals, hosted annually at BlizzCon. This is a tournament which has increased in popularity with every passing year, and as a result has welcomed more fans, participants and sponsors from around the world.
The basic structure of the tournament is organized in a number of qualifying tournaments, which are also known as The Road to BlizzCon by fans. From each region of the world there is a predetermined number of participants which are deemed good enough to advance to the WoW Arena World Championship Finals. These are as follows:
These 44 teams then face a further round of elimination, and are finally reduced to the best 8 teams in the world. These teams compete for a huge prize pot, from which all teams are paid out $6 thousand even before the tournament has started and the winners of the 2016 WoW Arena World Championship Finals were given a staggering $120 thousand.
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