Unsung Sports That Found Success In Games

There’s no denying that there are thousands of sports across the globe. Each sport has unique mechanics and dedicated athletes that just attract die-hard fans. Sport has the power to bring people together through the wins and the losses.

That being said, there are a few unsung sports that have yet to receive mainstream popularity. Tennis has four major tournaments during the Grand Slam with each one being a hyped event that brings in mass audiences. Players competing literally become celebrities and expand beyond the sport.

For the case of less ‘sexier’ sports such as Darts or Archery, they are usually just limited to their games. That was until these uncelebrated sports found success in other mediums. Certain sports were rejuvenated and introduced various audiences to these sports who wouldn’t have found them otherwise.

Here are 5 unsung sports that found success through games.



In history, archery is something incredibly cool that legends such as Robin Hood used to wield. Archery is sadly something you hear little about and not classed as a popular sport.  Despite the World Archery Federation being established in 1931 and hosted every year, the sport is rarely promoted or endorsed.

Video games on the other hand showcase archery as a thrilling and exhilarating sport. Whilst most of the characters in these games are terrible at archery, they highlight that learning to shoot a bow and arrow is just so darn cool. Who wouldn’t want to be as skilled as Aloy from Horizon Zero Dawn?



Whilst this may not be completely accurate, there is a stereotype that only old men play and watch darts. Perhaps this could be because darts are one of the only sports where you can play at any time in your life. Darts is more about hand-eye coordination and calculation, rather than being in peak physical condition.

There have been a few video games, such as PDC World Championship Darts and PDC World Championship Darts: Pro Tour, but these games didn’t do particularly well. It did find a new lease on life in the i-Gaming sector with Blueprint Gaming teaming up with PDC to release the World Darts Championship slot. The slot brought forward a more youthful image with modern players such as ‘Snakebite’ Peter Wright and ‘The Asp’ Nathan Aspinall.



Now, cricket is already limited in popularity as it’s primarily followed in the Indian subcontinent, Australasia, the United Kingdom, the West Indies and southern Africa - with the rest of the following the other bat-and-ball game of Baseball. That’s not to say that cricket doesn’t have an audience, but it’s limited to certain areas.

In 1998, Empire Interactive kick-started the Cricket Captain series (originally started at International Cricket) that focused on the beautiful world of cricket. They have been so popular and successful that they’ve released a game every year with the latest being Cricket Captain 2020. Players can experience cricket for themselves with multiple different modes and showing the full thrills of the sport.



Now Volleyball isn’t necessarily known as an ugly sport, but it’s not exactly the most popular sport in the world. Fans interested in volleyball aren’t booking time off work to watch the tournaments like with other sports such as American football or soccer. There aren’t dedicated channels or diehard fans - unlike other sports.

It found a new audience through video games such as Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball and Dead or Alive Xtreme 2. Whilst the Dead or Alive series is known for its fighting, the Xtreme series focuses on building relationships with the characters whilst playing different mini-games. Ultimately, Dead or Alive makes volleyball more invigorating by raising the stakes and adding love interests to woo.



Many recognise snowboarding as an elite sport as it requires equipment and a setting that can’t be easily acquired. That’s why many usually lean towards skateboarding as it can be played anyway provided that you have a board. There was a rapid growth for snowboarding in the 1990s and early 2000s but started dropping soon after. Participation in the sport dropped 28% from 2003 to 2013 and hasn’t recovered since then.

From the SSX series to Final Fantasy VII Snowboarding, snowboarding has remained extremely popular within the video game world. Alto’s Adventure combined stunning visuals and snowboarding to create something utterly memorable. Essentially, new titles such as Steep, Snow and Alto’s Adventure have rejuvenated the sport to make it gripping again for all ages.

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