We at the Deuce love gambling and we love video games, so what better than to combine the two for a brand new addiction? Yes, its video game betting. Two web sites are now online to give you the excitement of betting on the outcome of an event, like sports betting, and allowing you to impact the outcome of said bet with your own skills and no house advantage, sorta like poker.
World Gaming and BringIt are both online now and will let you set up a match with another gamer on certain Xbox 360 or PS3 (BringIt also allows Wii, PS2) games, put a wager down if you wish, play for that money and the winner will take it all...for a small fee (rake) of course.
What a genius idea. The best part about it is, it's not even technically illegal as this is not a game of chance, it is a skill game, and therefore not considered gambling, its betting. You see, its a totally separate thing there. Anyways...
World Gaming, to me, appears to have a better system set up compared to BringIt, allowing only games where the outcomes can be verified automatically from the video game system itself. In these games, you use your Gamertag or whatever the hell PS3 people use to identify themselves when you play your game and World Gaming's computer system can automatically identify and verify the results of the game, thus ensuring the proper payout to the winner. The games it allows this "service" for are: on Xbox 360 you can challenge people in Halo 3, Madden 09, FIFA 09, NHL 09, NCAA Football 09 and on the PS3 you can play people in Fight Night Round 3, Madden 09, Fifa 09, Resistance: Fall of Man, MotorStorm 2 (tournaments only), NHL 09, NCAA Football 09 and MLB 09: The Show.
But, BringIt allows gamers to go 2 routes to verifying game outcomes. There are the games, such as above, which their system can automatically verify the winner, or if you're playing in games that don't, there will be sort of an "honor" system...which when money is involved, I have to think will fall apart quickly. In this honor system, both gamers have to say who won. No way this works for reals, but it does allow for more games and systems to be played with (all the above games are included plus tons more). More inclusive than World Gaming, but with way more problems that can be attached to it.
Online poker was a HUGE boon to the poker industry when it rose up in the early 2000s, now, at the tail end of the decade, one has to wonder if a similar event is about to occur. This could be the beginning of a whole new frontier in video gaming, blowing up the scene like what happened in the poker world before it. Video game tournaments, like poker tournaments did, already existed for the best of the best to compete against each other for substantial sums of money. This was generally only for the pro's pros before online poker companies started sending their winners to the World Series, launching the game into unprecedented popularity. Now, just like when Internet poker blew up, the everyman has a chance to compete for cash right on his couch, away from the intimidating scene of a large tournament, while improving their skills during the all-American pursuit of the dollar.
Video games already have a huge installed base, as the industry as a whole makes more money than even the motion picture industry. If more and more people start playing for money, it will only be a matter of time before people other than the top gamers stop seeing video games as just a hobby and more like a possible career.
Some people are going to be banking some serious cash through these sites when they explode. I just wish this was out when I was still in college...I coulda paid off my future self's law school debts with the money i won from kickin people's asses in Madden on this site. Why does all the cool stuff come out when I don't have time to use it?