People naturally play their favorite games. Both hard science and practice proves that because simply put, it is satisfaction guaranteed. Well, not 100%, but yes, satisfaction is nearly guaranteed. But if you want to get more satisfaction with a taste of surprise, try lesser known games instead of sticking only to your favorites.

First things first. How do you know if a game is the underdog? Usually, the underdog has been weighed-in as the team or player who is more likely to lose in an upcoming online game (check out at . And they are not the public favorites. Favorites are usually the games who have the media under their wings giving them all the positive publicity they need to attract fans, casual players and what not.

Underdog gaming does not simply mean to play the most unpopular game possible.  It requires a good amount of research, attention, and sensitivity to various factors and variables that comes into play to make underdog gaming a rewarding feat.

How to spot good opportunities for underdog gaming

  • Estimating the challenge

Just when you thought gaming could not get more challenging on finding a rare gem of a game, livestreams like Twitch have burst on to the scene so you can actually see people playing some of these underdog games live! Even if it is just one person playing, you can still see more than ever before on that game. For instance, using you can find lesser known players and teams.

  • Media frenzy

Any prudent player does not solely rely on the media and goes the extra mile in researching about the teams or players and not just the star players. Other factors that come into play is the extent of media frenzy. Media coverage leading up to a game or esports event is important because it is instrumental in influencing public opinion. Media mileage has proportional impact on both the favorites and the underdogs, they can even change who’s who! Casual gamers or the general public will almost always play the favorite game because it is much more well known.

  • The bigger the dog

Another thing to consider to convince you to play the underdog is– how big is the underdog? Again, this is where research really comes into play. Information about the game and its performance so far and entertaining all possible scenarios is important to determine which games can rise above expectations and which can not.

So let’s try to put what we have established so far in action. An interesting bout to look forward to is the boxing match between Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao vs Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr on August 21, 2021 in Nevada. According to Fox Bet, Pacquiao is considered the underdog, and Spence Jr, the favorite. Why? Well for starters, Spence Jr is 10 years younger than Pacquiao, with a sterling winning streak despite an injury incurred from a car accident, his youth is leveraged by his height and punch distance while he also has his own mastery of the Southpaw stance. While Pac-Man has been tempered by 71 fights where 39 of which as KOs in his career, he is much older, shorter and hasn’t been in a ring for quite some time that might have made him rusty in parts. Experts expect Pac-Man to still be a big dog since he is considered an elite boxer who has had his share of cult following and media loyalty. In that sense the media will also play a big role on how this sentiment could change over the course of the next few months. This is similar to a lesser known game developed by a company that has had many big hits in the past. This is a great way to find hidden gems on rare consoles like the game in the featured image!

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  1. I’ve always enjoyed “underdog” games, since it can be rewarding to move from last place to first place (or even watch last place players move to first place). For instance, maybe you’re on a losing streak, but then at the very last moment, you sweep your opponent by constantly winning each round, because you were setting up the game with traps, spells, and hazards (which is especially true in TCG/CCGs or in turn-based RPGs). But of course, that’s not exactly an “underdog” game, but more of an “underdog” play style to a game, and I think this article mainly talks about “underdog” play styles rather than “underdog” games.

    But when it comes to “underdog” games (not play styles), the best I could think of is Mario Kart, because the game always balances out to give last-place player a chance to catch up. For instance, you’re in 8th place, then as you grab a mystery box, the item from that box is something useful like a bullet bill, a star, or a blue shell which can help you catch up in the race. I don’t think there’s a single game that’s deserving of being called “underdog” more than the Mario Kart series. And with this sort of underdog game, it doesn’t “require much research, attention, or sensitivity to various factors and variables” since the game determines how to balance itself out.

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