eSports glossary

For years, the world of eSports has become more and more popular. Electronic sports might still receive its fair share of scorn, but it’s an industry worth millions of dollars.

If you want to try and better understand what is being said on streams and when taking part in eSports yourself, here are some important terms that you should get used to hearing.

It won’t cover every eSports term, but it should be more than enough to help you get fluent in the kind of language that is being spoken all around you as you go about your gaming experience.

Auto attack

A form of attack that happens without player input; attacks over and over.

Aggro

The term used for when someone is playing aggressive, high-pressure playstyle. Also used for when players become the target of non-player enemies.

AoE

Stands for Area of Effect; any attack in a game that hits an area rather than a single target.

Brush

An area of the map that is used to obscure the map for other players; great for remaining hidden or camping.

Buff

A skill used to help boost the skills or promote the abilities of another player.

Build

The collection of equipment, skills, and other factors that gives your character a certain series of techniques.

Casting

The term used for someone who is streaming and/or commentating on an eSports match.

CC (Crowd Control)

Needed for games where large quantities of enemies can appear at once, needing players to thin the crowd.

Cheese

Using cheap tactics to try and gain an advantage, either against other players or NPCs.

Cooldown

The time it takes before a certain skill and/or ability is free to be used once again.

DPS

Damage Per Second – the amount of damage that any character is capable of dishing out on a second-by-second basis.

DQ

Disqualification. Can happen for all sorts of reasons.

Feeding

When you are killed repeatedly by the same opponent on a regular basis.

FF

Finish Fast; either an act of mercy to end a stomping win, or to let teammates know that victory is achievable.

Fog of War

Term used for any part of a map that is obscured until you venture into it, discovering what lies behind.

FPS

First Person Shooter; a kind of game that takes place from the perspective of the player i.e. through the eyes of your character.

Ganking

Normally used to describe attacking an unsuspecting opponent, usually from behind.

GG

Good Game. Usually sent at the end of a match to thank players for participation.

Glass Cannon

A player who can deal masses of damage but can take little on their own.

Griefing

Actions that are taken purely to irritate, annoy, or upset another player.

Juke

Used to try and bait someone into throwing an attack that you can then dodge.

KDA

Your number of Kills, Deaths, and Assists – used in most shooter games.

Kiting

The act of pulling an enemy from one place to another, dragging them with you to a chosen destination.

Laning

The art of forcing a particular lane to go for a certain objective, or engage with enemies.

Meta

Describes meta gaming; a form of gaming that means you play a game in a very particular fashion.

MOBA

A Multiplayer Online Battle Arena; the best examples are DOTA 2 and League of Legends.

NPC

A Non-Player Character; an AI-controlled character who no player is in control of.

OOM

Out of Mana; commonly seen in eSports for characters who have an ability/mana bar.

RNG (Random number geneneration)

Random Number Generation; a big part of many forms of game to give an element of randomity and chance.

RTS

Real Time Strategy; a fine example of this would be StarCraft or Age of Empires.

Salty

Description of a player who has become insulting, rude, or otherwise upset.

Tank

A character that can normally sustain aggro and take lots of damage.

Zerg

A term used for players who charge early on in games, trying to defeat their enemy with speed and pace.