Everything You Need to Know about Esports and Esports Players

Esports have grown in popularity, attracting players, game developers, and investors to this rapidly expanding sector. Esports are the competitive side of video games.  For instance, they primarily involve a team of players, similar to traditional games like basketball or football.

Esports tournaments attract fans around the world who watch their favorite players online as they compete. Esport games include adaptations of traditional games such as Football (FIFA) and video games such as Fortnite, League of Legends, CS:GO, and Dota.

The Path of Professional Esports Players

Top esports players make millions competing in tournaments. For example, Johan “N0tail” takes the crown as the highest-earning player in the world after his team won two Dota 2 tournaments for two consecutive years.

In addition to tournaments, esports players make money through sponsorships and advertising. For instance, an esports player will be paid by a clothing brand to wear their clothing or logo, or to mention them when playing.

Habits of Professional Esports Players

Whatever earning path they take, esports players typically take a number of key steps:

  • Picking a game. They could pick an upcoming game or an already established game to play. The advantage of picking an upcoming game is that one can grow with the game. A more established game already has the systems laid down and a dedicated player base, investors, and sponsors. One might try a few games and find the one that truly inspires them to play and compete.
  • Find their motivation. Why do they want to play esports? Knowing what inspires them keeps them going when everything else doesn’t seem to work out.
  • Practice. The next step in becoming a professional esports player is to practice the craft relentlessly. These players’ goal is to climb the ranks in the game and attract an esports team.
  • Watch replays to learn from mistakes. This way, they develop their game strategy by identifying strengths and weaknesses.
  • Develop a consistent schedule. Professional player treat their gaming routine as their job. This means being intentional about setting aside time in their schedule to practice their gameplay and perfect their skills.
  • Invest in the right gear. If they can afford to buy a high-quality gaming set-up, they do. This includes a comfortable gaming mouse, chair, and PC. The goal is to optimize performance to take their gaming act to the next level.
  • Join online tournaments. Tournaments have many viewers, some of whom could connect them to their next team. Accordingly, aspiring professionals put themselves out there to get noticed by professional esports teams.
  • Contact the teams they’d like to join. In addition to increasing their visibility through tournaments, aspiring players often take an active approach by reaching out to teams. Thus, they join Discord servers and other platforms where other esports players hang out. They also take advantage of open trials initiated by professional teams.
  • Learn from professionals. Another way gamers develop their skills is by watching other professional gamers as they play. Thus, by watching other gamers, they pick up their strategies and implement them in gameplay.

Key Takeaways

Competitive gaming has gone mainstream. In addition, it provides top esports players with a lucrative income to support their livelihoods. Many will play, but as in all sports, few will become professional.  Of course, dedication and solid habits tend to characterize those who succeed.


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Ronald K. Noble is the founder of RKN Global and currently serves as one of its principal consultants.