Esports Betting

There’s no doubt about it, betting on esports is becoming more popular and with this growth in demand, both traditional sportsbooks and modern esports aimed bookies are putting more money into the esports betting industry. With this extra focus being turned to competitive video gaming, you will start to see a wider range of games being covered, more sports betting operators offering esports betting markets and a wide variety of deposit bonuses tailored for esports bettors.

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Similar to the growth in online casino games, Esports is rapidly growing more popular which is great news for anyone who enjoys both video games and online betting websites. Doing the same thing over and over can become stale over a period of time, but with regular sports betting sites adding better coverage of competitive tournaments, punters have a better choice of betting markets to choose from. 

Below, our experts here at MaxFreeBets have compiled a list of sites for esports betting. We tell you the best sites as well as our reviewing process so that you can feel safe and secure in the knowledge that you are making the most of your esports betting experience.

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unibet logo
MIN DEPOSIT £10
£40 Free Bet + £10 Casino
MIN DEPOSIT £10
MIN ODDS 1.40
New customers only | 18+, BeGambleAware.org | Min deposit £10 | Money back as bonus | Wagering requirements: Sportsbook 3x at min. odds of 1.40 (2/5), Casino 25x | Only one bonus can be used at a time, Sportsbook bonus must be wagered before using the Casino, unless the bonus has been forfeited | Bonus will expire after 7 days of opt-in | Further T&C’s apply.
stsbet logo
MIN DEPOSIT £10
Up To £50 Cash
MIN DEPOSIT £10
MIN ODDS
18+. New depositing STSbet.co.uk customers only. Promotion valid from 08/06/2021 until further notice. First deposit min. £20. Wager min. £100 on any sportsbook-related markets, single or accumulator bets, pre-match or in-play, with min. odds of 4/5. £5 cash for each £100 wagered. Up to £50 cash in total. Deposit method restrictions apply. Full T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org
karamba logo
MIN DEPOSIT £10
£10 Free Bet
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MIN ODDS
New Customers Only | Max One Free £10 Bet | Qualifying Bets Must Be Placed At Odds Of 2.0 Or Greater | Paid As Bonus Token | T&C’s Apply
MIN DEPOSIT £5
£10 Acca Free Bet
MIN DEPOSIT £5
MIN ODDS
New players only | Qualifying bet(s) must have minimum odds of 3/1 and must be settled before triggering free bet | Free Bet must be used on an accumulator with 3 or more selections | T&Cs apply
bet365 logo large
MIN DEPOSIT £10
£100 Bet Credits
MIN DEPOSIT £10
MIN ODDS 1.20
Up to £100 in Bet Credits for new customers at bet365. Min deposit £5. Bet Credits available for use upon settlement of bets to value of qualifying deposit. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply

How We Evaluate the Best Sites for Esports Betting

When looking at the best sites for esports betting we look at a number of different areas of the site to make sure all important criteria are covered. The most crucial ones are the following:

The Range of Esports on Offer

With sports being off the table, for now, one of the esports markets that is popular is betting on FIFA, such as Esports Battle Champions League, where teams such as Napoli take on Tottenham in 8 minutes of fierce action. You can also bet on esport Premier League, Internationals, Bundesliga and all the major leagues. It may not be the full 90 minutes, but you get a quick taste of cheering on your team. There are also other esports sports to bet on such as NHL and more.

However, if you do want to take a step away from sports and go for the real nitty-gritty of esports, then the best sites for esports betting will offer bets on all the popular games such as CS:GO (Counter-Strike: Global Offensive), Dota 2, Overwatch League and League of Legends. These are the most popular and you’ll find that pretty much all sites that offer esports betting will offer these. However, the better sites will also offer other games such as Starcraft 2, Call of Duty, Overwatch, Fortnite, Rocket League and Rainbow Six. The more it offers, the better it is.

The Reputation of the Bookmaker

When a bettor is starting out on a new adventure, it’s important that they choose a site that they trust – and this is where the operator’s reputation comes into play. The reputation of an online betting site is incredibly important. So, we hold this very highly when it comes to recommending sites for esports betting. As such, every single site that we will recommend will be licensed by the ➀UK Gambling Commission, which means that it is safe and secure to play on in the UK.

We also look to make sure that the site takes care to promote ➁Responsible Gambling, by linking itself with sites such as ➂GambleAware and ➃GamStop etc. Because esports hasn’t been around for as long as most other betting markets, there will be a number of bad companies that are looking to pounce on and scam players new to the scene. Preferably, the site would also be registered with ➄IBAS (Independent Betting Adjudication Service) so if there is any problem, there will be an independent third party to make sure it is dealt with fairly.

In our reviews of the esports sites we recommend, we have a dedicated section to look at the safety and security of the site so you know it’s fine to play on and enjoy.

Esports Bonuses and Free Bets Offers

One of the best things about joining up with a site that offers esports is the number of bonuses and promotions on offer. However, when we look at the site’s bonuses, offers and promo codes, it’s vital that the offers are as good as they seem and are completely transparent. We love a site to offer these deals, as long as they are good deals. In general, the first thing we look at when checking out these offers, aside from the size, is the wagering requirement attached to the site. A huge wagering requirement means that the bonus isn’t worth the paper that it’s written on. These are not recommended as bettors can be sucked in without checking out the terms properly.

When we look at all the sites, we see all of the deals on offer, and look at all of the terms and look to see those that have the best ones overall. The best ones include free bets in the UK, tournaments, weekly events and specials – and some can even double your money.

User Experience

If you want to enjoy your time betting on esports, then you need to go on a site that has an overall excellent user experience – on desktop and mobile. We want to see a site that has a great interface that is not only intuitive and user-friendly but is also simple to get around and doesn’t suffer lag with a connection. You want a site you can rely on. If you put your bet on a winner, you need to know that the bet went through. If you want to place a bet on a live match, you want to be able to find it quick enough to place the bet you want. Any delay can cause a huge disruption.

When we look at the user experience of the website, we look to make sure the functionality works well on both mobile and desktop. You want to be able to use mobile just as easily, so you can enjoy online sports betting on esports on the go. We look at both aspects of the site to make sure the best user experience is on offer.

The Availability of Live Esport Betting

Just as live sports betting is popular, betting on live esports is equally as thrilling and is growing in popularity. This is so much more exciting than simple pre-match betting. You can watch to see what is going on in the game or match, you can see how everyone is playing and make your choices based on what you know and have seen. What’s more, in live esports betting, the odds keep changing – and quickly, so it’s a skill to get the best odds for your bet.

Live betting isn’t just about knowledge, it‘s also about speed and skill. You need to be able to put your bet down in seconds and you need to keep a close eye on the odds. The best live esports sites are super quick and super slick. This is the most important aspect of live esports betting.

Esports Betting Types

The best sites for esports betting offer you a variety of betting types. Pretty much all of the esports sites will offer straight win bets. You pick the winner and if you get it right you get the win. However, if you want to get a bit more excitement out of it, then you want a few more betting options at your disposal, You want to find the bet that gives you the best odds and the best value, which isn’t always a winner.

A good bettor will know what a value bet is and look for it. As such, the best esports sites will offer a variety of betting types and betting markets as possible to give you, the bettor, more choice. As such, we lookout for things such as scorelines points and spreads as well. The more on offer, the better the site.

Customer Support

No matter how good a site is, it’s possible that you may encounter a problem with one of your bets. This can happen on any site, but the most important thing is how the site deals with it and how good the customer support is.

So, we look at how available they are – is it 24hour or are there operating times? What means are there to contact? Do they offer live chat, phone email, Twitter? Moreover, is it easy to find the contact details? Then we want to know how quickly they respond to queries. You should be looking at the phone and live chat queries being responded to in minutes – and emails preferably in a few hours. Do they actually help? Does the team actually answer your question successfully or are they unhelpful? A good customer service experience can make it – and a bad one can break it.

Payment Methods and Banking

One of the make or break experiences is how the site deals with your money – when putting it in or taking it back out again. No matter whether you bet a lot or just a little, you want to know that your money is being looked after by a site that is trusted. There are several areas of this aspect that we look at. The ease of depositing is important as you may want to place your bets quickly. As such, it needs to be an easy process – and the more methods available, the better. We do like to see PayPal betting options as this is a sign of trustworthiness. We also like instant deposits with no fees and a very small minimum deposit. The addition of Bitcoin betting sites, a Cryptocurrency, is now available as a payment option across many online gambling companies which adds to the wide list of payment options that are already available. 

Withdrawing is even more important. You need to be able to get to your money quickly and easily. As such, we rank highly the sites that have plenty of withdrawal options and ones that have quick withdrawal times. We also like to see high (or no) maximum withdrawal limits so if you do have a big win, you can get to your money straight off. We also prefer it if there are no fees attached, as we don’t think you should pay to get to your own money. Esports betting is so much better if you know your money is being looked after and you can get to it quickly and easily.

The Top 3 Sites for Esports Betting 2021

What We Check For:
Licensed
🔐 Security
😍 Customer Service
🎁 Welcome Offer
🎰 Games
🏆 Odds
🌀 Wagering
💳 Payment Methods
💰 Withdrawal Speed
🖥 Software
📱 Mobile Compatibility

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mansion bet logo
MIN DEPOSIT £10
100% Up To £100
MIN DEPOSIT £10
WAGERING 2.0

MansionBet launched in 2018 and is quite new to the esports betting scene. However, it does cover most of the esports that are around. You can find the most popular games – CS:GO, Dota 2 and League of Legends as well as other top games such as Call of Duty World League, Overwatch OWL, Starcraft 2 and the Rainbow Six Pro League. You can bet pre-match and ante-post customized bets as well as singles, accumulators and combi bets. You can also bet on many of the games live, although you cannot live stream the games yet

New customers only, min deposit and bet £10 from UK Debit card only. Paypal not accepted. Max Bonus £100. 10x wagering dep+bonus at min odds evens (2.0) within 30 days prior to withdrawal. Sports bets only, certain bet types excluded. T&Cs apply.
bet victor logo
MIN DEPOSIT £5
BET £5 GET £30
MIN DEPOSIT £5
WAGERING 2.00

This is one of the very best sites for esports betting and it covers all of the major games such as CSGO, Dota 2, League of Legends King of Glory and FIFA events and leagues. So, whether you want to try the tournaments or FIFA matches, you’ll find what you want. There are a large number of betting types for esports including singles, as well as accumulators, each way bets, doubles, trebles and more. You can also use the bet calculator to help you find out your winnings. Another plus is that it does offer live betting for its esports markets.

18+ new customers only. Opt in, bet £5 at odds 2.00+ within 7 days of registering, no cashout. Get 2x £10 Free Bets, set events at odds 2.00+. Plus £10 Slot Bonus, selected games, wager 20x to withdraw max £250. 7 day bonus expiry. Card payments only. T&Cs apply. begambleaware.org | Please gamble responsibly
william hill logo
MIN DEPOSIT £10
Bet £10 Get £30 In Free Bets
MIN DEPOSIT £10
WAGERING 1.5

William Hill is famous for offering literally everything – sports and esports related. Like all the others, it offers the popular games CS: GO, Dota 2 and League of Legends but there are so many more on offer including – Rainbow Six, Starcraft 2, Storm Overwatch, Rogue, EnVyUs, Immortals and King of Glory, The William Hill site offers a variety of betting types for all esports including the first team to kill ar first to draw blood. However, the site does focus mainly on handicap and in play options. It also mainly covers high rollers and the most popular competitions. You can bet on the games live, but you cannot currently live stream

New players only | Min deposit £10 using code P30 | Min odds 1/2 (1.50) | Free bets paid as 2 x £15/€15 (30 days expiry) | Payment method/player/country restrictions apply

All About Esports

If you do want to start betting on esports, then you will need to know what you’re betting on. The golden rule of betting is generally to read up on your subject and to become knowledgeable. In this case, as in many other cases, knowledge is power. So, here’s a few things you might want to know before you get started…

What Exactly is Esports?

Well, esports are simply computer games and competitions where players go head to head to beat the rest. There are two types of esports – individual and team esports. In many esports games, you will have to complete tasks such as destroying the enemies, capturing flags and complete missions and objectives. This is becoming more and more popular and it will continue to grow.

The popular esports games are:

  • CS:GO
  • League of Legends
  • Dota 2
  • Fortnite
  • Starcraft 2
  • Rocket League
  • Overwatch
  • Call of Duty
  • Rainbow 6
  • FIFA

But there are various others to play on. Generally, the most popular tend to be the strategy games (League of Legends, Starcraft 2 and Dota 2). However, Battle Royale is becoming more popular with games such as Fortnite. The popularity and games available change and so it always keeps you on your toes.

What is the Difference Between Esports Betting and Sports Betting?

If your natural habitat is sports betting, then you might wonder how this works in relation to sports betting. Does it work in the same way? Are there any differences? Well, luckily if you are sports betting fan, you’ll find that it’s pretty much exactly the same as sports betting. What’s more, most of the popular UK sports betting sites also offer esports betting. Although traditional sports betting remains the more popular way to bet on both traditional bookmakers and modern online sportsbooks, Esports betting is slowly gaining more interest by the day. This means that more online bookmakers are making the effort to include a wide range of coverage on both minor and major events in esports. Just like you would in sports, you pick the team that you think will win (or player) and make your bet – once you get to know what you’re doing, you can start looking at bet types and markets as you would with sports betting. 

So, if you start learning about League of Legends, not only can you bet on the win, but after practice, you can start betting on things such as the number of kills overall and the first team to complete set tasks. Each market that is available will come with its very own betting odds – like usual – and punters can decide how much of a chance they want to take. 

What Esports Tournaments Are There in 2021?

Well, as things stand, although obviously with the situation, most things can be subject to change, there are a number of esports tournaments in 2021, run by the biggest eSports organisers such as ➅ESL for you to bet on. These tournaments are huge in the esports world and can be worth a bomb to the winners. The financial gain that winners can have is truly surprising. To date, winnings in Dota 2 tournaments alone have hit more than $220 million. It is no surprise that sports betting companies are doing their best to offer an array of betting markets on esports events, as there is so much money to be won in the major tournaments. 

As you can imagine, this means it is becoming ever more popular with players and bettors who want their slice of the winnings pie. You can find out all the latest information on what is going on in the esports world by visiting sites such as ➆Liquipedia, and ➇Gosu Gamers, which have all the latest news of competitions and tournaments.

The scheduled tournaments for 2021 are:

May 2021
22nd April – 10th MayLeague of Legends – European Masters Spring 2020
1st May – 10th MayDota 2 – Epicenter Major
June 2021
16th June – 21st JuneCS:GO – BLAST Premier: Spring 2020
20th June – 28th JuneDota 2 – ONE Esports Singapore Major
July 2021
6th July – 12th JulyCS:GO – ESL One: Cologne 2020
August 2021
12th August – 23rd AugustDota 2 – The International 2020
November 2021
9th Nov – 22nd NovCS:GO – ESL One: Rio 2020
Others TBC
  • League of Legends 2021 Season World Championship (LoL Worlds)
  • League of Legends 2020 Mid-Season Invitational (MSI LoL)

Most Popular Games for Esports Betting

Dota 2

Dota 2 is one of the most popular esports games and has a huge global player base. The game is hugely fruitful and there can be plenty of money found in the Dota tournaments. The game is a Multiplayer Online Battle Arena game (MOBA). This genre combines different aspects of real-time strategy games such as WarCraft, with the tower defence games. The game consists of two teams each consisting of five players. They then compete to destroy the core of the base of the opposing team. Every player controls a hero that becomes stronger as the game goes on.

League of Legends

League of Legends is a hugely popular game developed by Riot Games. Like Dota 2, [players work In teams to defeats their enemy Nexus. This is a game that his very strategic and takes a lot of skill with fast-paced gameplay. Each team places their players in different areas of Summoners Rift. They face off against their opponents to try and put their team in control. As the game goes on, the players have to complete a number of tasks and eliminate players.

CS:GO (Counter-Strike: Global Offensive)

This popular esports game is a multiplayer first-person shooter game that sees two players face off against each other. The terrorists take on the counter-terrorists. Each team needs to try and take out the other team while they complete different goals. Terrorists might need to do things such as plant bombs or defend hostages. Meanwhile, the counter-terrorists need to stop the bomb from exploding or defuse it, or rescue the hostages.

References

[ref-links]

UK Gambling Commission
GambleAware
IBAS (Independent Betting Adjudication Service)
ESL
Liquipedia
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About Joe Kizlauskas

Joe is a seasoned iGaming copywriter and speaker who has been in the business since 2015. He's written more words on all elements of iGaming than he likes to remember, and he's contributed material to a number of well-known brands. Joe may be seen playing 5 a side, at the gym or playing games on his Playstation when he is not writing.