Rocket League: Basics and How it Works
Rocket League development began early in 2008 when Psyonix released their first game titled Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars. The game quickly became popular amongst the gaming community, with over two million people downloading it shortly after its release.
The popularity of their first game ushered Psyonix to start developing a sequel, which ended up becoming the Rocket League we know today.
Rocket League was first announced in February 2014, although it was not until July 2015 when Rocket League got officially released for PC and PlayStation. The version for Xbox One, macOS, and Linux came a year later, while the Nintendo Switch version surfaced in 2017.
Much like its predecessor, Rocket League is a vehicular soccer video game, where players take control of a rocket-powered car that they then use to compete in various arenas that closely resemble a soccer pitch. The game combines elements of racing car games and soccer, where the goal of the game is for the players to use their cars to hit the giant ball and push it into the opponents' net to score a goal. The team which scores the most goals by the end of the game is victorious.
Players can jump and use "boosts" which significantly increase their speed, not only helping them move around the arena faster and hit the ball (or opponents) with more speed, but also allow them to fly in the air for a short amount of time.
Professional games of Rocket League are played in a 3v3 format and take roughly five minutes, with sudden-death overtime used to determine a winner if the score is tied when the time runs out. Just like any other esports title, Rocket League has its own meta. However, it is much simpler since it only affects which types of cars the professional players use, making it easier, yet very crucial to understand for anyone looking to learn how to bet on Rocket League.
Betting on Rocket League - Basics
Since Rocket League features all the characteristics of a soccer match, learning how to bet on Rocket League is significantly easier than most other esports titles. For that reason, Rocket League is a perfect esport for any newcomers to the esports betting world.
The most frequently used format in most matches is either best-of-five (Bo5) or best-of-seven (Bo7). Rocket League tends to use an extended format because games are very fast-paced, which is also one of the features that differentiate the Rocket League from other esports.
Since teams need to win three or even four games to come away victorious, Rocket League also sees far less upset wins, as teams need more than just luck to turn the game around.
In Rocket League betting features many bet types, but there are only five that are the most popular and most commonly found on any sportsbook. Those are Moneyline bets, Match winner, Spread (Handicap) bets, Totals, and Futures.
How to Bet on the Moneyline
Like all other esports and sports titles, the most popular market in Rocket League is Moneyline, which is essentially a bet on which team will win a match. This bet includes all games of the series, so you're betting on an overall winner of any given match. Moneyline will also be named as "match-winner" of "head-to-head."
As an example of the Moneyline bet, we have a Rocket League match between two Rocket League teams Team SIR and Artic Colada.
- Team SIR: 1.20 (-500)
- Artic Colada: 4.20 (+320)
In this example, Team SIR is priced as massive favorites, offering only $20 payout on every $100 wager, whereas a $100 bet on Artic Colada can earn you $320. The odds in this example and any other will reflect the perceived probability the teams will win.
How to Bet on the Match Winner
Match Winner in Rocket League should not be confused with the Moneyline (outright) bet, although the two are fairly similar. Instead of betting on which team will win the whole series, the Match Winner market allows you to bet on which team will win any given match of the series.
This market will only be found alongside matches that are played in best-of format, which is used in most top-tier Rocket League tournaments. It is worth noting that not all tournaments are played in a best-of series. Some use a simple best-of-one format, where the Match Winner market is the same as Moneyline/outright market.
Since all Rocket League maps are more or less the same (outside of different spawn points and boost positions), odds offered on Match Winner market will usually be the same as Moneyline bets. Having said that, this bet type becomes very useful in in-play betting, where you get a better insight into how the game is going and which team has a better chance to walk away with a win.
How to Bet the Spread
With spread (or handicap) betting, you are giving one team a positive or negative handicap that they need to hold on to or overcome for your bet to win. In Rocket League, spread betting will either focus on the number of matches (rounds) won or the number of goals scored.
The former will only be found in a best-of series (Bo3, Bo5, Bo7). In best-of-five series, where a team needs to win three matches (rounds) to win the whole game, you will most commonly be presented with a +1.5 match (round) handicap.
As an example, we will focus on the same match as above, featuring Team SIR and Artic Colada.
|Team SIR||- 1.5 rounds||1.70 (-140)|
|Artic Colada||+1.5 rounds||2.50 (+150)|
Since Artic Colada is objectively the weaker team in this match, you have an option to award them with a +1.5 match (round) handicap or give Team SIR a -1.5 match (round) handicap. If you were to side with Artic Colada at +1.5 handicap bet, the team would need to win two rounds for your bet to win, while siding with Team SIR at -1.5 map (round) handicap means you're expecting SIR to win with at least two maps to spare.
Depending on the format of the game and the bookmaker you choose, you will also be presented with +/-2.5 or +/-3.5 handicap, where the same concept applies.
The other form of Spread (Handicap) betting is called goal spread (handicap), where the same idea as above applies. Instead of awarding or penalizing one team by adding/taking away the number of matches won, you award or take away the number of goals scored in any given match. This type of bet can be found in all matches, including Bo1.
How to Bet on Totals
With the totals or Over/Under market, you're betting on how many total goals will be scored by both teams combined in a particular map. This is one of the simplest, yet one of the most effective bet types esports bookmakers use to increase their profits.
Although the fast-paced gameplay makes it difficult to predict how many goals teams will score, experienced bettors will recognize the team's playstyles and bet accordingly. In a way, this market is exactly the same as betting on totals in a soccer match, albeit you can expect to see a couple more goals scored in a Rocket League match.
The line which bookmakers will offer on a totals market is entirely dependant on which teams participate in a game and on which map the game will be played. Odds on these bets will usually sit at around 1.90 (-110) or, in some cases, lower - again depending on which bookmaker you choose.
How to Bet on Rocket League Futures
With a Futures bet, you are predicting which team will be the champions of an upcoming tournament or event. This is a very simple bet type, though a very difficult one to execute properly. Competition in Rocket League is very tight, and winning any major tournament is a huge achievement even for the strongest teams in the scene.
There are a lot of elements that go into predicting a winner of any Rocket League tournament. It's often difficult to know how teams will perform, which is why odds offered on Futures market are very generous. That is one of the reasons it is very appealing for esports bettors.
Some of the biggest tournaments bookmakers will offer futures bets on are Rocket League Championship Series (RLCS), Electronic Sports League (ESL) Cups, Major League Gaming (MGL) Series, as well as other Rocket league events organized by major esports organizers such as Summit, DreamHack, Gfinity and more.
Where to bet on Rocket League
By now, you already know a thing or two about Rocket League's gameplay and the betting types. So now it's time to figure out where you can start betting on Rocket League. Of course, the obvious answer is a Rocket League betting site.
But since Rocket League esports betting scene is still lacking behind other major titles, the betting options are somewhat limited. This meaning not all esports bookmakers will be offering markets on RL.
Fortunately, there are a handful of esports bookmakers who are accepting bets. Some of the best Rocket League betting websites include:
Betway: An established long-standing bookmaker, which offers wide coverage of Rocket League and other esports titles.
Betting strategies and Tips
Now that you know everything there is to know about Rocket League betting, we have gathered a few useful tips and strategies you can use in your Rocket League betting journey.
Don't put too much emphasis on maps
Unlike CS:GO, where maps are a very important factor of any match. The different arenas (maps) in Rocket League only produce marginal differences that rarely affect the final outcome of the game. For that reason, you should not put too much emphasis on the maps and rather focus on the strength of the teams.
Gather information by watching pro players' streams.
Like in many other esports titles, Rocket League pro players often stream themselves playing the game in the days leading to the match you're planning to bet on. Watching the streams will give you a great insight into how well the players are prepared for the upcoming fixture. You might also get some crucial information about any events that have happened in the team, such as relationships between the players, the team's morale, and other details that will help you choose your bet.
Don't overvalue the team's form
The previous form of teams is important in any sport/esport, but you need to look at it as a relative thing when analyzing these matches. Don't bet on a team just because they're on a good run. Not without considering other circumstances, especially previous head-to-head record of the team they're facing.
Early stages of any match are crucial
Similar to its real-life counterpart (soccer), the early stages of any Rocket League match are very important. If a team is looking very strong early on, it's highly likely they will use the momentum to defeat their adversaries in the latter stages. It's very difficult for a team to turn the tides and overcome an early deficit.
If you're betting on an individual match in a series, the first match will give you a clear indication of how the rest will go. So keep that in mind when betting on Rocket League.