Fantasy Football, and other fantasy sports, has become massively popular in recent years. Yahoo, ESPN, CBS, and even the NFL itself play host to tens of thousands of leagues. I’m in three leagues myself this year; the fine folks at Platform Nation have even put together a league, “P*N League of Awesome.”
Fantasy Football seems to draw from all demographics. I’m in one league with my girlfriend’s mom and her aptly-named team “league_mama.” Teams names can be creative (“One Nation Under Tebow”, “Masamune Snugglebunnies”), dull and boring (“Joes Team”, ”Team coughlin”), or just plain offensive (“Travis Henry’s Children”, ”The Cleveland Steamers”, and “Oops I sh*t myself).
Fantasy sports have become mainstream and emerged from something only sports geeks salivate over. Fantasy leagues have done for the sports world what social gaming has done for video games. Social games have extended the reach of gaming to 40-something moms obsessing over Farmville; fantasy football has taken the game from analysts and professionals and put it in the hands of casual and hardcore fans alike.
Do fantasy sports and video games really have this much in common, or am I drawing unnecessary parallels?