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Should you become a Professional eSports Player?

On the surface, little has changed in what it takes to become a professional athlete. You need talent, hard work, the right mindset, and the ability to work in a team. If you dig deeper, however, you find sports that don’t require immense athleticism. Case in point: eSports, the growing world of video gaming open to new members from all walks of life.

If you know how to play video games, you can become a professional eSports player. But if you want to be a successful eSports player, you’ll need a lot more than basic skills. Of course, there are numerous jobs in the video gaming world besides playing professionally.

But if you are determined to kick start a career as a professional eSports player, below is a quick guide on how to do it.

Choose a Game you Love

Eli Gallagher, a professional Overwatch player, advises beginners to choose games they love for one important reason: You’ll be gaming for hours every day. Gallagher plays Overwatch ten hours a day, and he says it never bores him.


Most eSports streamers, notably Ninja and Shroud, have admitted to spending more than ten hours each day playing video games. And although some of the streamers play a wide range of games, experts advise professionals to specialize in specific games.

Fortunately, there’s no shortage of games to focus on as an eSports player. League of Legends, Dota 2, and Counter-Strike lead the way in popularity. There are dozens more popular eSports games, including sports simulations like Madden, FIFA 20, and NBA 2K.

Make Money

You might not be interested in money when you start playing video games. But you must pay bills, buy food and support your family for it to make sense. Fortunately, it’s possible to make money even as a beginner eSports Pro.

If you opt to stream as a way of marketing yourself, monetize your channel through adverts or by selling merchandise. Most streamers do it and make much more than the average eSport player salary. To give some context, streamers PewDiePie, Ninja, and Tim the Tatman combine for a net worth of $36.5 million.

By comparison, most eSports players earn under $500,000 a year. And because their careers tend to be short, they tend to become s.  Of course, that shouldn’t discourage you from going pro. But while finding a team, use your video game skills to do things that can help you pay bills.


Market Yourself

Although there are scouts continually looking for talented eSports players, there are rarer than in traditional sports. You could get lucky if you play in a high school or college that sponsors eSports programs. But if you are past school life, marketing yourself is the best way to get noticed.

Start a free Twitch account and stream your content regularly. Do the same on Facebook now that it’s become home to a growing number of streamers. Alternatively, blog and actively look for local eSports teams open to new members.

As many professionals admit, it can be challenging to find a professional team as a beginner. Most eSports league sign players who’ve already proven they can compete and win games. In other words, they look for experienced players. And how do you gain experience? Start from the bottom and work your way up the ladder.

Build a Brand

Branding is one of the best ways to succeed in life. People love brands, and they’ll spend more money if they believe you offer something unique compared to regular people. Ninja is one of the biggest brands in the eSports world, and he’s also one of the wealthiest streamers.

Having active social media accounts is the starting point for building your brand. Gamers have a preference in twitter, in particular. But with the growing success of Facebook as a streaming platform, you could also build your brand on the platform.


For the uninitiated, branding doesn’t have to be an expensive, time-consuming adventure. Tweet daily. Post gaming content on your Facebook page and interact with your followers. Highlight your strengths and find a way to grow your audience.

With fame comes attention, the right kind of attention Ninja captures from celebrities and show hosts like Ellen. More importantly, you expose your brand to companies willing to partner with you for sponsored posts and to create adverts.

Win Tournaments

The life of a professional eSports player is short. So, if you start finding opportunities to participate in tournaments, play to win as many competitions as you can. Don’t slack and reduce your practice sessions after you earn a few paychecks.

Chasing trophies is one of the best ways to grow your brand in eSports. The industry has more than 400 million fans. And even if a fraction of the fan base becomes your fans, you can use them to benefit your brand tremendously.

Of course, winning tournaments is easier said than done. Many eSports players only defend their championships once or twice before losing out to upcoming players. But while a professional, motivate yourself and team members to keep winning.

Invest in Equipment and Skills

After you become an established eSports player, don’t forget the need to grow your brand and improve your talent. Many professionals hire managers for the same reasons. As a player, you could choose to focus on enhancing your skills.


But get someone to help you manage your equipment, market your brand when unavailable, and to reach out for new opportunities. Missing out on practice because your gaming machine broke down or you don’t have power should be avoided as much as possible.

Instead, manage your career professionally. Depending on how big your budget is, you might also need help with your diet, checking your health regularly, and managing your finances frequently.

The Takeaway

You can become an eSports player even if you have limited skills as a gamer. But to be successful, you must be prepared to spend tons of hours playing your favorite games. You also need to market yourself, build a brand, and work hard to reap the fruits of gaming.


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