Esports Around The World is a series of profiles outlining the esports ecosystem in various countries globally. The series ties into our ESI Washington DC event taking place 16-18th May 2022, which will focus on esports’ growth around the world. The event will include a first-of-its-kind embassies tour alongside ESI’s trademark combination of networking, education and debate. Find out more here.
While still not recognised as a sport in the country, Sweden has a long and rich history in esports, and the Swedish people are some of the most passionate cohorts of esports fans.
The nation hosts the world’s largest LAN party and computer festival in the form of DreamHack. Starting in the 1990s, DreamHack’s massive LAN parties played an important part in the evolution and growth of esports, developing from a gathering of enthusiasts to professional esports events. Today, fans come from across the globe to attend.
Modern Times Group, a holding company that until recently owned ESL Gaming and DreamHack, is based in Stockholm, Sweden. The Saudi-backed Savvy Gaming Group bought Modern Times Groups’ esports assets in January 2022 for a reported $1.5bn (~£1.1bn).
Sweden is home to some of the best esports talent in certain games and some of the highest earners in esports history. It has also had several female pro players.
CS:GO is one of the biggest esports in Sweden and the country has bred some of the most notable professional players in the game. Players such as Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund and Patrik “f0rest” Lindberg were both part of the iconic Swedish Ninjas in Pyjamas team that dominated the early, formative years of the esports title.
A further push will be needed if the country is to gain government recognition, but — despite its relatively small size and population — Sweden is firmly on the esports map.
The Swedish Sports Confederation voted in 2021 to not accept esports into the confederation. This resulted in The International Dota 2 Championship, the biggest Dota 2 event in the world, having to be moved from Sweden due to an inability for players to get visas.
Valve tried to work around this, but the publisher’s request for The International to be considered an elite sporting event, thus giving its players access to sporting visas, failed.
Notable Tournaments & Leagues
While not a mainstay location in international esports calendars, Sweden has hosted some major tournaments, with two notable top-tier events set to take place in 2022.
|DreamHack Summer 2021||PGL Major Stockholm 2021|
|DreamHack Winter 2021||Rainbow Six Seige Sweden Major|
|ESL One Stockholm 2022 (upcoming)||RLCS 2021-22 Fall Split Major|
|Pinnacle Cup Championship (upcoming)
||Six Invitational 2022|
Notable Esports Organisations
Note that this is a non-exhaustive list and exclusion does not signify an org is not notable.
|GODSENT||Ninjas in Pyjamas|
National Associations / Federations
Note that inclusion in this list does not suggest any acknowledgement from ESI of its authority, works or official capacity.
|Swedish Esports Association||SVEROK|
Two schools have reportedly launched full-time esports degrees, Aelandagymanasiet and Strömbäcks Folkhögskola, claiming to offer courses for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, though the current status of the courses is unclear.
Moreover, Sverok (Swedish Roleplaying and Conflict Gaming Federation) is a non-profit youth gaming organisation in Sweden. It helps organise and promote gaming as a hobby in the country and the setup of local clubs. It additionally has put together a code of conduct for players, parents and organisers.
This is a preliminary country profile and will be augmented with additional information over time. If you have any suggestions or feedback for this profile, please get in touch at [email protected]