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The beginners guide to eSports betting odds

As eSports is becoming more and more popular for every year, several people are finding their way to the entertaining world of eSports betting every day. We have therefore created the following guide with the intention to create a deep understanding of eSport odds. We will cover all of the basics, but also get into details on certain things, such as how eSport betting sites are deciding what the odds for matches should be.

What are eSports odds?

These days it’s possible to place real money bets on several professional matches being played on a wide range of different eSport games. The most common bet to place is what team will win the match, but usually you can find a lot of other bet options as well. This includes which team will get the first blood in League of Legends and which team will win the first pistol round in CS:GO. These betting options go under the term “markets”.

All of these markets are given a special value by the eSport betting sites. This value is showing how much money you will win if the bet you have placed is a successful one. It’s this specific value that is referred to as an eSport odd.

At a lot of eSport operators you have the possibility to change the way that you view this eSport odd. There are three different ways to view it, which are called Fractional, Decimal and American. In Europe, Decimal odds are most commonly used, while American ones are standard in the US. To give you an example, a Decimal odd of 1.50 would equal 1/2 in a Fractional view and either -200 or +50 in an American view.

Decimal view

To calculate your total winnings when using Decimal odds on eSports, you have to multiply the odd value by the amount you bet. If you for instance bet €100 to an odd of 1.50, you then multiply €100 by 1.50, which equals €150. If you’re only interested in finding out what the net profit would be, you remove 1 from the decimal odd and then multiply it with your bet. This means that €100 would be multiplied by 0.5, which would equal a net profit of €50.

Fractional view

The Fractional view is a bit more complicated than the Decimal one. When using this one, you have to multiply your bet amount with the number to the left and then divide that sum with the number to the right. This will tell you how much net profit the bet would earn you. If the Fractional odd is 1/2 and you bet €100, you first multiply €100 by 1, which simply enough is €100. You then divide this amount with 2, which equals a net profit of €50.

American view

The American view is a bit different from the other two. You’ll either find that the odd is stated with a + or – in front of it. If it’s a plus, this is indicating how much your net profit would be for every €100 that you bet. If it’s a minus, this is showing how much you would have to bet to be able to win €100. This is why -200 and +50 is the exact same thing.Arcanebet text breaker with frame

How are eSports betting odds selected?

While some betting operators are hiring a third party company to handle their odds, other operators handle it themselves. No matter who is doing the job, the process is the same. There is a team of people that are highly knowledgeable in different sports that make assumptions of the likelihood of certain events happening. These people are called odds compilers.

If you’re for instance betting on CS:GO, you’ll find at least one person that has great insight in the professional scene. If the team Astralis is up against, this person will make qualified guesses on the probabilities of who will win the match, take down the first pistol round and on any other markets that will be provided to bet on for the match.

Let’s assume that this person believe that Astralis has a 70% chance to win the game. This would give a 30% chance. Probabilities are easily transformed into Decimal odds by dividing them by 100 and then dividing 1 by that amount. For Astralis we would first divide 70 by 100, which is equal to 0.7. We would then take 1 and divide that by 0.7, which gives us 1.43 in Decimal odds. If we do the same for, their Decimal odds would be 3.33.

Of course no one is doing these calculations manually, but there are several odd calculators to find on the internet. These will instantly calculate the Decimal, Fractional and American odds by just inserting the probability.

The above would be the correct eSports betting odds according to the odds compiler’s guesses. These will however not be the ones that you see available on the eSport betting site. For the betting operator to ensure themselves that they are making a profit, they will lower these odds by a certain percentage, which is usually around 5-6%.

Your bet alternatives can affect your eSports odds

It’s important to know that there are different ways that you can place your bets on, which can affect your odds on eSports. We’re not talking about the different markets, but when you’re choosing a match to bet on at an eSport operator, you will create something that is called a coupon. Before confirming this coupon, you will have to enter the stake you would like to bet with and also choose one of three different bet alternatives. These alternatives are shown in columns and are called Single, Accumulator and System.

Let’s assume that you’re choosing four different matches to bet on, which are added to your coupon. To make things easy, we assume that these all have an odd of 2.0. Now let’s have a look how your odds and bets are affected depending on the bet alternative you choose.

Single bet

A single bet is the most straightforward way to place your bets as this will never affect your odds. All you have to do is to enter a stake for each and everyone of the four matches you’ve chosen. For every match that you win, you’ll receive twice your stake back as the odd was 2.0 on all of them.

Accumulator bet

An accumulator bet it’s the perfect way to increase your odds on eSports, but it’s also a risky move as you’re required to win all of your matches. With this bet alternative your odds are always multiplied with each other. In our example this would mean 2*2*2*2, which is equal to an odd of 16.0. Should you choose a stake of €10, you would win €160 if all of the four matches were successful. This is twice as much as you could win if you bet €10 on all matches as a single bet. If just one of the matches would lose, you would however lose the entire bet.

System bet

A system bet is a great way to reduce the risk of losing as not all of your bets have to win for you to profit. Your odds are affected in a similar way to an accumulator bet, but it’s a lot more complicated to calculate possible winnings. If you place the four matches that we took as an example and choose the alternative system bet, you’ll be given three different systems to choose from. You can either choose 1/4, 2/4 or 3/4.

  • 1/4 means that you can win on every single match.
  • 2/4 means that you can only win on combinations of two correct matches.
  • 3/4 means that you can only win on combinations on three correct matches.

If you choose 2/4, there will be six different combinations that you can win on. The easiest way to picture this is to give your four match selections a letter in the alphabet. Let’s give them the letters A, B, C and D.

This will give you the following combinations:

AB | AC | AD | BC | BD | CD

Should you have the correct result on matches A, B and C, but lose on D, you would win on the four combinations that don’t have a D in them, which means that four combinations would be won. Should you only have the correct result on matches A and B, the only combination you would win on is AB and the rest would become lost.

The stake you choose to bet with will always be divided with the number of possible combinations. In other words, should you have placed a bet of €10, each and every combination would have a stake of €1,66 (10/6). The odds for each combination is caluclated by multiplying them just like you would do with an accumulator bet. As all of your four matches had 2.0 in odds, every combination would give 4.0 in odds (2*2).

Let’s say that you did indeed get the correct result on matches A, B and C. This will give you four winning combinations with a stake of €1.66 mutliplied by 4.0 in odds. This is equal to €6.64 for every combination and a total win of €26.56 for all of them.

If you chose the 3/4 system instead of the 2/4 one, you would only have four possible combinations:


The odds on each and one of these would however be higher as you now have three matches combined. This would give you an odd of 8.00 for every one of them (2*2*2).

The more matches you add in a system bet, the more system you’ll be able to choose from, which will affect the odds and number of winning combinations.

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