Esports Franchises to Watch: Teams with Massive Fanbases and Global Reach in 2024

2024 promises to be a pivotal year for esports, marked by innovation and restructuring in the industry. This article takes an in-depth look at the most promising titles, revenue trends, and the influence of streamers and community casters. In addition, it examines the rising role of Saudi Arabia and China in esports and the emergence of new streaming platforms. Here is what you need to know about the future of esports.

The Rise of Saudi Arabia in Esports: Savvy Games Group’s Influence

Saudi Arabia has cemented its influence in the esports scene through the Savvy Games Group, which acquired ESL FACEIT Group, known for organizing major esports tournaments. This strategic acquisition marked Saudi Arabia’s entry into the global esports industry, indicating its ambition to become a key player in the sector.

The Success of Gamers8

In 2023, the largest-ever esports festival, Gamers8, was held in Riyadh, boasting a $45 million prize pool. Its rebranding to the Esports World Cup Signals Saudi Arabia’s intent to invest even further in esports, attracting more attention from top esports teams and publishers.

Building Infrastructure and Talent

Saudi Arabia is developing large arenas and local leagues while attracting international players and coaches. With plans for a city dedicated to gamers, Saudi Arabia aims to provide a hub for esports clubs and gaming studios, further cementing its influence in the industry in 2024.

China’s Growing Openness in Esports: Hosting International Tournaments

China is becoming increasingly open to the global esports’ scene. In 2024, two significant LAN tournaments, IEM China, and Perfect World Shanghai Major, will be hosted in China. The Perfect World Shanghai Major marks the first Valve Major to be held in China, showing Valve’s interest in growing the Counter-Strike market there.

New Tournaments for Team-Based Shooters

With the launch of the Valorant Champions Tour in China, Riot Games will also introduce VCT 2024: Masters Shanghai. This competition will rival Valve’s Counterstrike in the Chinese market, making it a crucial battleground for the two biggest names in esports.

Revenue Streams and Regulations

Despite recent regulatory challenges, the esports sector in China generated $3.71 billion (about $11 per person in the US) in revenue in 2023, with game streaming accounting for 81% of total income. While government regulations have impacted revenue, the potential easing restrictions in 2024 should bolster the industry’s growth.

The Future of Streaming Platforms in Esports: Competition Beyond Twitch and YouTube

Twitch and YouTube are facing competition from platforms like TikTok, Kick, and CHZZK. TikTok’s engagement in esports tournaments is rapidly growing, with a peak viewership of over 1.18 million during the M5 World Championship. Meanwhile, Kick and CHZZK are attracting audiences and streamers, with Kick sponsoring Dendi’s B8 Esports.

Gaming Options

As esports continues to captivate global audiences, sportsbooks are increasingly viewing platforms like Twitch and YouTube not just as broadcasting channels but as vital arenas for engaging with fans. Betting promotions have become a prominent feature within esports streams, introducing a new interaction layer. These promotions not only offer fans the chance to engage more deeply with the events but also raise questions about the impact of gambling on younger audiences. Integrating these promotions into regular broadcasts is shaping a new landscape where the thrill of betting is juxtaposed with the excitement of live esports action, creating opportunities and challenges for the industry.

Mobile Esports Enters New Markets: Honor of Kings Expands Globally

TiMi Studios’ Honor of Kings is set to expand its reach beyond China in 2024. The international launch of Honor of Kings will draw Western attention, especially with a $15 million prize pool for international tournaments.

Mobile Legends: Bang Bang’s Global Reach

Mobile Legends: Bang is also expanding globally, with organizers planning tournaments in China and Central Asia.


As mobile esports continue to grow, these games will draw larger audiences and compete with PC titles.

The Role of Community Casting in Esports: Streamers Shaping the Industry

Community casting is playing a larger role in esports, with streamers like ibai and kamet0 drawing millions of viewers to tournaments.  Their involvement has created a vibrant atmosphere reminiscent of traditional sports events, highlighting the potential of community casting in esports.

Streamers and Their Esports Organizations

Popular streamers such as Ludwig, Cr1TiKaL, and Disguised Toast are building esports teams, demonstrating the potential for content creators to shape the future of the industry. Their strong brands and large followings are a driving force in esports growth.

Esports 2.0 and the Future of Competitive Gaming: Entertainment-Focused Competitions

Esports 2.0 prioritizes entertainment value, with show matches and streamer events becoming increasingly popular. Events like Twitch Rivals, Ludwig x Tarik, and KCX3 are blurring the lines between esports and traditional entertainment, drawing massive online and offline audiences.

Collaborations and Audience Expansion

Esports organizations are embracing collaborations with streamers to expand into new regions and disciplines. These partnerships are expected to play a significant role in attracting new audiences and monetizing esports in 2024.

Financial Challenges for Esports Teams: Finding New Revenue Sources

In response to rising operational costs, esports organizations are exploring new revenue sources like partnerships in franchise leagues and merchandise sales. These strategies help clubs stabilize their finances and adapt to the evolving esports landscape.

Team Collaborations and Mergers

Team mergers are becoming more common, with smaller clubs joining forces to reduce costs and larger organizations expanding into new disciplines. These partnerships are crucial in helping teams navigate the challenges of the esports industry.

Esports Titles to Watch in 2024: Honor of Kings’ Global Debut

Honor of Kings is expected to be a prominent esports title in 2024, with its international tournaments set to attract a global audience.

EA Sports FC 24’s Growth

EA Sports FC 24 (formerly FIFA) is leveraging drops and aggressive marketing to expand its player base, with significant viewership growth already evident.

Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0’s Potential

Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0 has shown potential as a major esports discipline.


The World Series of Warzone’s success highlights its capability to become a staple in the competitive gaming scene.

Escape from Tarkov: Arena’s Entry

Escape from Tarkov: Arena is a promising new entrant to the esports scene. Its debut tournament at DreamHack Hannover highlighted its potential, with developers focused on enhancing the gameplay experience.

Artificial Intelligence in Esports: Enhancing Training and Broadcasts

AI is already being used to analyze player performance, provide optimal strategies, and enhance broadcasts with statistics and highlights. As AI technology advances, its integration into esports will reshape how games are played and viewed.

Improving Streaming and Accessibility

AI can enhance the accessibility of esports by improving transcoding and multilingual support in broadcasts. This will make esports more accessible globally and provide a personalized experience for fans.

Esports in 2024 will see significant growth, driven by innovation, new revenue streams, and global expansion. With Saudi Arabia and China leading the way, and mobile gaming rising in prominence, the esports industry is poised for a transformative year.