For many of us, the prospect of earning good money just by playing video games sounds too good to be true.
Well, a number of professional gamers actually call this dream life a sweet, sweet reality.
Every year, the thriving eSports community rewards the best players for their skills, pitting champions against each other in a variety of tournaments. Professional gamers claiming the top spot in specific challenges win massive cash-prizes you might not believe.
For these lucky few, their love of gaming paved the way to a great living, and their overall winnings are enough to make you weep …
Lee “Jaedong” Jae Dong
This gamer has generated more than $500,000 through his undeniable skills.
With more than 47 tournaments under his belt, Lee is a StarCraft: Brood War champion, and has been called the world’s best Zerg player. Not a bad title to have!
Jonathan “Fatal1ty” Wendel
The brilliantly-named “Fatal1ty” has achieved a whopping $450,000+ in his professional-gaming career.
Having taken part in more than 35 tournaments, he has made a name for himself blasting through FPS games, and has even expanded into selling his own games hardware. Nice work if you can get it.
Lee “Flash” Young Ho
“Flash” has earned more than $440,000 in recent years, and like “Jaedong”, is a massive expert in StarCraft: Brood War. As one of the world’s best Terran players, he kick-started his successful career in the MBCGame StarCraft League and the OnGameNet StarLeague.
Danylo “Dendi” Ishutin
“Dendi” has earned more than $438,000 across 38 tournaments,
He started his professional career with Defence of the Ancients, and was recruited by Natus Vincere (a well-known pro team) soon after.
Oleksandr “XBOCT” Dashkevych
Over the course of more than 35 tournaments, “XBOCT” has racked up $435,000+.
As another member of Natus Vincere, he is a professional DotA 2 player with formidable abilities. Considering he apparently didn’t start to earn significant money until he took part in 2011’s The International tournament, his victories across the past five years are not to be sniffed at.
Clement “Puppey” Ivanov
“Puppey” has more than $430,000 to his name thanks to his gaming skills.
Yet another member of Natus Vincere (team captain, in fact), he has won his fair share of DotA 2 bouts and helped his clan to top the International and the ESWC (Electronic Sports World Cup).
Jang “MC” Min Chul
“MC” can thank his gaming skills for his fortune of $426,000+, having played in more than 75 tournaments.
He has achieved great success with Protoss, and is known for his costumes and extravagant victory-celebrations.
So, feeling inspired? You should be. Next time someone criticises you for playing video games all day, direct them to the seven chaps above – you could be earning the same as them someday!
Have you ever won money for your gaming? Let us know!