The global worldwide popularity of eSports is booming and the video game industry is thriving at an all time high right now. Years ago kids would play video games on a rainy day or after school with friends.
Parents would tell them to turn off the games and get outside and get some fresh air. Well now that might not be the case, because eSports is becoming a way for gamers to make a living. A very lucrative living at that.
There are competitions that pay millions of dollars to the winner, huge endorsement and sponsorship deals on the table, and it’s only getting bigger.
It seems as if the entire gaming industry grew almost overnight. Let’s explore the what, why and how of this new craze.
You first need to understand video games are a big business now.
Video games have always been popular and the manufacturers have always made money. This is nothing new. What is new, though, is the opportunities for the actual gamers playing to make money.
There are a lot of contracts up for grabs these days. For gamers to join teams, organizations, leagues, etc. As well as endorsement and sponsorship deals. It’s turned into a big business, with lawyers, agents, and reps.
There are now eSports personalities as big as professional athletes.
The top eSport gamers are not only making a lot of money, but they are building huge fan bases. There are now personalities in eSports that are as big, if not bigger, then some top professional athletes.
Kids used to grow up idolizing top athletes and wanting to play professional sports. Now kids look up to gamers and dream of playing video games at the biggest tournaments in the world. Wow, how times have changed!
Companies are itching to get in on the action.
This surge in popularity is helping gamers ink huge endorsement deals, from energy drink companies to industry companies, the money is flowing hard.
Red Bull just recently signed Ninja, who is one of the biggest gamer personalities, to a deal. They typically only signed extreme athletes to contracts, but this just goes to show you just how popular it has become. They even made a special “Ninja” can. Big brands are seeing the value here, as these gamers have a huge following not only on the game streaming platforms, but on social media as well.
This large audience and attention is valuable to a brand.
Even industry companies like GGServers are sponsoring events and players in an attempt to leverage the exposure opportunities.
Hey parents, let little Billy stay inside and play video games (just kidding).
Now, before you encourage your kids to stay inside glued to their video game console just remember there are tens of millions of kids playing video games, yet just a handful making a lucrative living.
It’s great, yes, but it’s probably best that little Billy play outside instead. There are very few people that will truly make a dream living by playing video games.
While they are a good distraction and entertainment for kids, pursuing a living doing so will not be easy.
- Daniel Willis is one of two co-founders of this blog and has several years of art and culture experience, where he has been published by some of the most iconic and well respected books and resources.