Not just for fun anymore and picking up steam with a vengeance, eSports tournaments are proving video games aren’t just a nerdy way to waste time and have fun. These community gamer tournaments have grown to a level of professional competition where those skilled in the gamer community can take home some serious prize money.
Since the very first event held back in October of 1972 at Stamford University and the inaugural tournament in 1980, a massive revelation has transcended in the gaming industry rising it to levels previously believed unfathomable! And it’s not slowing down!
The Overwatch League or OWL as it is affectionately known by those in-the-know, is one of the most exciting professional eSports leagues out there today! Blizzard Entertainment conceived and announced this league in 2016 and by 2018 fired off season one with total distributed prize money reaching a whopping $3.5 million!
The Overwatch league consists of teams just like any other North American franchise sports league, (NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL) and models itself in a very similar fashion. Permanent teams belonging to various owners out of specific locations. Players or gamers are on a roster, making fixed salaries and benefits with performance-based bonus abilities. Not so nerdy now is it? They have regular and playoff seasons with the 2020 regular season starting on February 8 and ending August 9. Then the playoffs! Tickets are on sale for these events and range in value and price with the lower end at $40 and progressing right up to VIP packages with meet and greets! Just look up their web site for event and purchase information.
Let’s take a look at some of the top games awarding prize money.
Ranking #1 of all presently is Dota 2. This is a multiplayer online battle game with a staggering $216,416,299.19 in payout cash! There are 3410 players and 1245 Tourneys. A follow up to Defense of the Ancients, this game was released in July of 2013.
Next on the list is Counter Strike: Global Offensive, a multiplayer shooter with the Linux version released in 2014 and currently pays $82,211,058.18 in greenbacks legal and tender. There are 12,055 players to date.
The third highest current paid game is Fortnite. With significantly fewer players this game of 3156 players pays out $78,829,882.39. A strong point to be made when considering a career is not the highest payout figures but the ratio of players to payouts as well. As the numbers show, a better income can result with less competition.
The fourth ranking overall payout is $70,392,193.37 with 6,810 players is League of Legends.
The next thought or question one might want the answer to is how do you get in to the pros? Pick one game and a Platform. Study not only techniques and tactics but study the most popular while communicating with others. Practice, practice, practice! They have summer camps. Go to one! Next, join a team, and finally join a league. It’s that easy! Work hard and prosper