Will Asian Games pave way for better Esports culture in India?

OCA has announced 8 new titles and a few exhibition titles for the Asia-wide event.

Medals won in Esports at Asian Games would be counted in the medal tally.

Esports is touching new heights by the day when it comes to popularity across the globe. Now that Asian Games are just around the corner, a lot of buzz has already begun. It was earlier about what titles could be included and what could be the stand on battle royale formats. However, a recent announcement by the Olympic Council of Asia clarifies this integral doubt.

In an official statement by the OCA, they said “The Olympic Council of Asia has announced the titles for the debut of esports as an official medal sport at the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, China in September 2022.”

OCA has announced 8 new titles and a few exhibition titles for the Asia-wide event. The addition of Esports in this grand event only goes on to show how popular Esports has become in the Asian continent. The announcement was made at the Chefs de Mission Seminar video conference for the 19th Asian Games.

The Director General of the OCA, Mr Husain Al-Musallam, said: “We hope that this announcement allows all participating teams ample time to prepare and equip themselves ahead of the qualifying stages. 

“I believe we have ticked all the right boxes ensuring a high level of competition which promises great viewing for enthusiasts and casuals alike. 

“We at the OCA are looking forward to working closely with our friends at the Asian Electronic Sports Federation and the Hangzhou Asian Games Organising Committee to ensure a successful execution of the esports event at the 2022 Asian Games.”

While the organisation does talk about the inclusion of the PUBG Mobile Asian version, it would be interesting to know how countries that had banned the game take part in the said title.

The eight official events, and publisher, are:

1、Arena of Valor Asian Games Version

2、Dota 2

3、Dream Three Kingdoms 2

4、EA SPORTS FIFA branded soccer games


6、League of Legends

7、PUBG Mobile Asian Games Version

8、Street Fighter V

The two demonstration events are:

9、AESF Robot Masters-Powered by Migu

10、AESF VR Sports-Powered by Migu         

Esports in Asian Games through Indian perspective

Mr Lokesh Suji, Director, Esports Federation of India & Vice President of the Asian Esports Federation (AESF) on this announcement: “Finally, we are here with esports at the Asian Games’22; 8 esports titles means 24 medals. For titles like Hearthstone; EA FIFA, DOTA2, League of Legends, Street Fighter, we have very strong chances of winning Medals for India; Tirth Mehta who got bronze medal last time (2018), will be able to convert that bronze to a Gold this time. We will soon launch the “Road to Asian Games” program in line with AESF, to identify the best of the talent and train them for the main event at Hangzhou, China in September 2022. Thankfully we have enough time at our hands (unlike last time) to have the best of the players represent India at Asian Games’22. For titles like AOV (Asian Games Version) and PUBG Mobile (Asian Games Version); we are waiting for more inputs to come.

It’s time for our Sports Ministry to recognize ESFI and our sport “esports”. We are confident that we will increase our medals tally this time. ESFI & AESF both are committed to develop, support and grow esports not only in India but the region.”


Esports is a common field for all male and female athletes. However, in India, many female athletes face a lot of hate and toxicity. If the audiences’ favorite team loses because of a girl gamer, a girl gamer is faced with n number of abuses because she is a girl. However, boys are not subjected to abuses to such a great extent. Before we step into the world wide exposure, at home we need to address these.

SportsLumo.com got in conversation with Lokesh Suji, Director, Esports Federation of Indian, and talked about what could be done to make Esports more female athletes friendly and what should happen in the run-up to the Asian Games.

Besides all of this, there is still an issue with the esports world– the inclusion of women and their acceptance in the industry. Do you think there should be a protocol for women’s safety in the esports world and actions against trolls who abuse them, should they be adequately reprimanded? 

Toxicity is something we need to address, not just in India, but worldwide. People don’t become toxic because they just want to be, but by virtue of where things stand, our Esports athletes have a very young audience and they are not that mature. They can just sit behind their screens, with a pseudonym. That is a problem, and is largely a cyberbullying problem. And in the case of female athletes, it is on the larger side because people cross the boundaries of language. Toxicity is always there. There is some sort of decency that should be maintained. It is not that everyone wants to abuse female players. There is only a certain number of people who have that mindset that they want to hide behind those names and identities. Checks and balances are there but it can not be that easy because we are a community of large numbers of players in India. This is something that needs to be addressed, and it is on top of our agenda, because for us even identifying who this person is, and then reprimanding him, we need a lot of support from the game developers also.

As of today, the game developers have the policy of reporting abuse, and the easiest way to do it is by reporting the person in-game. Thankfully, now that we have a lot of technology on our side, one can record the abusive player, along with his in-game name, and then just write a mail to the developer asking them to block the person’s ID. That is the best solution. As a federation, we will have a defined clause for this, and will definitely penalise the person under the law.

Sportslumo Desk

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