How Much Do Esports Players Get Paid?

How much do esports players get paid? It’s a question that’s on a lot of people’s minds, especially as the competitive gaming scene continues to grow. While there’s no easy answer, we’ve done our best to break down the subject and provide some insight.

How Much Do Esports Players Make?


The esports industry is still in its infancy, which means that there is a lot of room for growth. Players can expect their salaries to increase as the industry matures.

Players in established games such as League of Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive can expect to make a minimum salary of $3,000-$5,000 per month. Top players can make significantly more, with some reports suggesting that the best players can make up to $15,000 per month. These figures are for salaries only and do not include prize money or sponsorship deals.

Players in less established games will likely earn less than this. For example, players in Heroes of the Storm may only make a few hundred dollars per month. However, as the popularity of these games grows, so too will player salaries.

Prize Money

In general, the top players in most popular esports can expect to make a comfortable living, with the more successful athletes earning salaries in the hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. Of course, how much a player earns depends largely on which game they play and how well they perform.

The majority of esports prize money comes from tournament winnings, with teams and players typically splitting any earnings evenly. The amount of prize money available in any given tournament varies depending on the game, the popularity of the tournament, and the size of the participating teams. For example, The International, an annual Dota 2 tournament hosted by Valve Corporation, typically features a prize pool in excess of $20 million dollars; by contrast, smaller tournaments may only offer a few thousand dollars in total prize money.

In addition to tournament winnings, many professional gamers also earn income from sponsorships and endorsement deals. The size of these deals varies widely, but the most successful esports athletes can earn millions of dollars per year from sponsors alone. For example, Tyler “Ninja” Blevins reportedly earned $1 million dollars from streaming platform Twitch after signing an exclusive deal with them in August 2019.

How Do Esports Players Get Paid?

Most esports players are paid a salary by their team. Some of the larger organizations also provide their players with a signing bonus when they first join the team. Players may also earn a portion of their team’s winnings from tournaments. In addition, many players also have sponsorship deals with companies that pay them for wearing their clothing or using their products.


Esports salaries vary widely from team to team, especially across different regions. In North America, the average salary for an LCS player is $316,000 per year. The average salary for an LEC player is €60,000 per year ($69,000 USD). In China, the average LPL player earns ¥400,000 RMB per year ($58,000 USD). Meanwhile, in South Korea, the average LCK player brings in ₩56 million KRW per year ($48,500 USD). These are just averages — many players earn much more while others make significantly less.

Players’ earnings also depend on how successful their teams are. For example, SKT T1 earned $1.6 million dollars in prize money in 2018 — that’s over $100,000 per player! In contrast, G2 Esports only earned $340,875 that same year. Of course, G2 still paid their players well — they just didn’t have as much prize money to work with.

Successful teams also tend to offer their players signing bonuses and performance-based bonuses. For example, SKT T1 gave their LoL team a ₩30 million KRW ($26,000 USD) bonus for winning the LCK Spring Split in 2019. Some teams also cover their players’ living expenses — including rent, food, and utilities. And the very best organizations offer their players health insurance and retirement plans!

Prize Money

While some professional gamers are able to make a living through streaming platforms like Twitch and YouTube, the top players in the world compete in esports tournaments for prize money. The amount of prize money that is up for grabs at these tournaments has been growing exponentially in recent years, thanks in part to the growing popularity of esports.

The largest esports tournament to date was The International 2019, a Dota 2 tournament that had a prize pool of over $34 million. The winner of that tournament, OG, took home over $15 million. That’s just one example of the kinds of prize money that are up for grabs in the world of esports.

In general, the prize money at an esports tournament will be split between all of the teams that compete. The amount that each team receives will depend on how well they performed at the tournament. For example, at The International 2019, the first-place team took home 38% of the total prize pool, while the last-place team only received 1%.

While it’s certainly possible to win big at an esports tournament, most professional gamers will also make some money from sponsorship deals and other forms of advertising. For example, many professional gamers will stream their gameplay on Twitch or YouTube and offer sponsorships as a way for their viewers to support them. These sponsorships can be in the form of direct financial support or simply free product from the sponsor.

Professional gamers can also make money by signing exclusive contracts with teams or organizations. These contracts usually guarantee a certain amount of money for each year that the gamer is under contract. In some cases, these contracts also include bonuses based on performance or other factors.

How Much Do Esports Players Spend?

On the surface, it seems like esports players are raking in the dough. After all, they’re professional athletes who are traveling the world to compete in tournaments with huge cash prizes. But what many people don’t realize is that esports players actually have a lot of expenses. From travel to equipment to training, there are a lot of costs associated with being a professional esports player. So, how much do esports players really get paid?


Training is one of the most important aspects of being an esports player. If you want to be the best, you have to put in the hours. How much do esports players spend on training?

The answer varies from player to player, but the average is around 10 hours per day. Some players will train for 12 hours or more, while others may only train for 6 hours. It all depends on how much time the player feels they need to put in to be successful.

Many top players also have coaches who help them with their training. The coach will create a training schedule and help the player focus on their weak points. A good coach can make a big difference in a player’s success.

Players who are serious about becoming professional esports athletes will make sure to get plenty of rest and eat a healthy diet. They know that their bodies need to be in top condition to perform at their best.

Tournament Fees

While many esports tournaments have no entry fee, some of the larger events do require players to pay a small fee in order to compete. For example, the Overwatch World Cup has an entry fee of $40 per person. Obviously, this is a far cry from the millions of dollars that some traditional athletes have to pay just to compete, but it is still something that players need to take into account when budgeting for their careers.


As with any other professional sport, travel is a big part of the job for esports players. Teams will often fly all over the world to compete in tournaments, and many players also travel to conventions and other events. All of this travel can add up, and it’s not unusual for players to spend several thousand dollars a year on airline tickets, hotel rooms, and other expenses.

How Do Esports Players Save Money?

Many professional gamers seek out sponsorships and tournament winnings as their primary source of income. However, like any professional athlete, they must also be mindful of their spending and budget their money wisely. In this article, we’ll take a look at how professional gamers save money.


In the world of esports, players are able to make money from a few different avenues. The most common way for players to make money is through sponsorships. These can be in the form of product placements, where the player uses a specific product during their streams or at competition, or they can be more direct, with the player being directly paid by the company. Players will also commonly have ads played during their streams, which also provides them with an income. Players can also make money through wins and prize pools at competitions.

Streaming Revenues

There are a few different ways that professional esports athletes can make money. The first and most common is through streaming revenues. Platforms like Twitch and YouTube allow gamers to stream their gameplay live and rake in ad revenue, donations, and subscriptions from fans. The top streamers in the world can make millions of dollars per year just from streaming, and many of them also supplement their incomes with sponsorships and other streams of revenue.

The second way that esports athletes make money is through tournament winnings. While the prize pools for esports tournaments are not yet as large as they are for traditional sports like golf or tennis, they are rapidly growing. The largest tournament in history was The International 2019, which had a prize pool of over $34 million. The winner of that tournament took home over $15 million, which is more than most professional golfers or tennis players make in a year!

Many professional gamers also make money through sponsorships. Just like traditional athletes, esports athletes can sign deals with brands to endorse their products. These deals can be worth millions of dollars per year, especially for the top players in the world.

Finally, some professional gamers also make money by teaching others how to play their game of choice. There are many instructional videos and guides available online, and some pro gamers will charge for access to their best tips and tricks. This is a great way for them to make some extra cash on the side while also helping others improve their skills at the same time!

How Do Esports Players Invest Their Money?

For many people, the idea of earning a living by playing video games is a dream come true. And while there are plenty of ways to make money gaming, many esports athletes are wondering how to invest their money. After all, with the prize pools for tournaments reaching into the millions, there is a lot of money to be made in esports. So, how do esports players invest their money?


Coaching is one of the most common ways that esports players make money. By coaching other people, players can use their experience and expertise to help others improve at the game. This can be done on a one-on-one basis, or through group coaching sessions. Players will typically charge an hourly rate for coaching services.

Tournament Winnings

The majority of a pro player’s income comes from tournament winnings. In fact, many players only make money from tournaments and don’t have any other sources of income. The amount of money that a player can earn from a single tournament varies greatly depending on the game, the tournament, and the player’s finishing position. For example, the first-place team in The International 2018 (a Dota 2 tournament) earned over $11 million dollars. While the fifth-place team only earned $368,000. So as you can see, there can be a huge difference in prize money even between teams that finish close to each other.

Of course, not every tournament has prize pools as large as The International. In fact, most tournaments have much smaller prize pools. For example, a recent Call of Duty World League event had a prize pool of $200,000 with the first-place team taking home $60,000. While this is still a decent amount of money, it’s nowhere near what the top Dota 2 teams earn.

It’s also important to keep in mind that not all tournaments arecreated equal. Some tournaments are organized by game developers or publishers while others are organized by third-party organizations. Tournaments organized by game developers or publishers tend to have larger prize pools because they have more resources and more money to put into the prize pool.


Like traditional athletes, many pro gamers rely on sponsorships to help supplement their earnings from prize pools. In fact, for some players, sponsorships make up the majority of their annual income. And just like traditional athletes, these sponsorships usually come in the form of direct payment or product endorsement deals.

For example, popular League of Legends player Tyler1 has a sponsorship deal with cereal company Cinnamon Toast Crunch. As part of the deal, Tyler1 promotes the cereal on his stream and social media channels. In return, he receives a portion of the sales generated by his promotions.

Other pro gamers have similar arrangements with energy drink companies, gaming peripheral brands, and even clothing companies. Some players even have their own signature lines of gaming peripherals and apparel. All in all, there are a lot of different ways for esports players to make money through sponsorships.

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