Esports is an international industry in which skilled video gamers compete for cash prizes. According to recent estimates, it reaches 380 million people around the world and generates revenue of more than $1 billion annually.
Unlike traditional sports, the esports industry doesn’t rely on media rights revenue to pay players. Instead, teams often rely on merchandise sales and sponsorships as additional sources of income.
Team OG is one of the highest-paid esports organizations, earning $33.5 million in 2019. Johan Sundstein (N0tail), a member of The International 2019, is considered to be the highest paid esports player ever.
Professional gamers make money in addition to tournament prize money by streaming their games, selling merchandise, and sponsoring other teams. In addition, they typically receive a yearly salary from their team and are heavily involved in running it.
The top esports players typically begin their professional careers around 16 or 17 years old, playing multiple video games instead of being limited to one genre.
Some of the biggest esports titles include League of Legends, Dota 2, Counter-Strike and Overwatch. These games are multiplayer online battle arenas where players must defend their base from an enemy group.
Teams typically consist of players that specialize in each game, competing against other teams from their league for cash prizes and promotions. Team members may be full-time employees of the organization or independent contractors.
These players often have a large social media following and are well-known to fans of their sport, just like professional athletes are. These individuals can build an immense fan base, which in turn attracts sponsors who wish to support them financially.
However, they will be up against more experienced and financially supported teams. This means they must strive harder in order to guarantee their success and retain their supporters.
Esports, like all professional sports, can be physically taxing. It is not uncommon for pro gamers to suffer injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis elbow, and repetitive strain injuries.
Esports players often experience devastating injuries, which could mean losing money or being removed from the game altogether. That is why it’s critical to treat any injuries promptly and keep them out of the spotlight as much as possible.
The top esports teams provide extensive training and support programs, often including coaches and psychologists to help their players manage stress and anxiety. This is especially beneficial to young players who may not have access to expensive treatments on their own.
They must also engage in physical fitness activities to stay healthy and keep their minds sharp. These exercises improve motor skills and coordination as well as mental abilities such as attention, focus, and memory.
There are a lot of misconceptions about how esports teams make money, but the reality is that most are not profitable. Some, such as 100T and FTX, even filed for bankruptcy in 2021.