Esports Around The World is a series of profiles outlining the esports ecosystem in various countries globally. The series ties into ESI’s international esports business events, which take place around the world.
Brazil is the biggest market in the LATAM region, and is home to some of the most die-hard esports fans. Due to the accessibility of smartphones, the mobile games market far outpaces the PC and console markets — yet PC esports titles are still more profitable. More and more young players are viewing esports and gaming as an escape from poverty, resulting in a booming ecosystem that is increasingly appealing to teams and sponsors alike.
Brazil has enticed a number of mobile gaming companies, with Garena and Riot Games having well-established operations in the region. However, the growing mobile esports market doesn’t mean Brazil has turned its back on other games. The Brazilian Major-winning SK Gaming roster from 2016 helped grow the CS:GO scene immensely, and teams like Furia, LOUD and MIBR are spearheading the growth of the game in the region. There are also established leagues in almost every notable esports title: Rainbow Six, CS:GO, League of Legends, Wild Rift, Free Fire, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang and others.
League of Legends also has its franchised league system in Brazil, with the top-tier tournament, the CBLoL, recording more viewers than the LCS in the Spring split of 2022 (136,000 on average). The league’s latest split saw just under 72,000 average viewers, which is in line with the drop in viewership in most other regions.
Brazil saw much development between 2022 and 2023. International esports organisation Team Liquid commenced operations in Brazil in 2022 and doubled down in 2023. One of the largest festivals in the world, Rock in Rio, added esports events to the 2022 edition, and the VALORANT Champions Tour hosted a season kickoff event in the country in just a few months.
Riot Games has launched several women’s tournaments in the country, and ESL officially committed to the country via the IEM Brazil tournament. IEM Rio was a Valve-sponsored Major in 2022, and the tournament was so successful that organisers ESL Gaming renewed it for 2023.
Brazilian organisations have also made headlines across the world. FURIA notably rented out a Times Square billboard to showcase its newest player signing in 2023.
Esports is not considered equal to other sports in Brazil on a federal level, as there is no official federal law in Brazil that is dedicated to esports and esports athletes.
However, efforts at legislation have been ongoing since 2017. Legislation faces a number of obstacles, though, such as the fact that Brazilian states have their own competencies and therefore their own say in how esports legislation is applied.
Public pressure amidst criticisms of the federal law in 2019 prevented it from passing. However, several states have introduced their own legislation in lieu of the proposed federal law, namely in the states of Paraíba and Paraná.
Sadly, even though esports is rapidly developing in the country, legislation is slow to follow. The government’s current Minister of Sports Ana Moser said in an interview that esports is a part of the entertainment industry, and not a sport, comparing esports to singers and actors. Moser also said she has “no intention of investing in it.”
Notable Tournaments & Leagues
Brazil is a country in which mobile gaming flourishes, but there are also a number of notable tournaments in PC games. Brazil is also known for hosting important stops in major tournament circuits prior to the pandemic, such as the ESL ONE Belo Horizonte.
Notable Esports Organisations
Note that this is a non-exhaustive list and exclusion does not signify an org is not notable.
|Red Canids Kalunga
National Associations / Federations
Note that inclusion in this list does not suggest any acknowledgement from ESI of its authority, works or official capacity.
|Brazilian Confederation of Electronic Sports (CBDEL)
|Confederação Brasileira de Games e Esports (CBGE)
Los Academy is a streaming and esports education project which seeks to help players and streamers improve their talents, with Los Grandes founder Rodrigo ‘El Gato’ Fernandes on board.
Neverest Esports, which used to host professional rosters, switched its focus to creating an educational project in 2021. It created a catalogue of educational videos for aspiring talents and hosts a tournament circuit called the Neverest Experience to help choose and sign future talent for the organisation.
Similarly, AfroGames is a social project in partnership with NGO AfroReggae. It provides courses in computing and English to young people from poor neighbourhoods in Brazil, and has signed a professional League of Legends roster from graduates of its courses.
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]. Article last updated: August 17th 2023. Article originally published: May 10th 2022.