How Much Do Esports Gamers Make?

Competitive video gaming has gained a massive global audience over the last three decades and the numbers keep increasing in millions every year. According to Steam stats, video game distribution hit record highs in 2018 with 18 million concurrent users. In the meantime, esports online audience and global TV reached an impressive 395 million.

While the industry is still far behind heavy hitters like the National Football League in terms of revenue generation, competitive video gaming has still grown significantly. In 2023, global esports revenue is projected to surpass the billion-dollar mark, recording an impressive 27% growth compared to 2022. But how much are esports players making in 2023?

How much esports players are making in 2023

Like in most professional sports or when playing poker at legaluspokersites.com/real-money/, the prize money is one of the most crucial things about esports. Professional esports players can earn thousands of dollars monthly in prize money alone, while a dozen of the top players in the world make millions of dollars annually.

So far, Dota 2’s professional competition, The International Championship, has the largest prize pool. The competition will be held in Shanghai this year, with a $34.33 million prize pool. That makes it the biggest award money set for a single esports event and a significant increase from the $25.53 million prize pool awarded in 2018.

While such competitions allow the top esports players to rake in millions, several factors affect the amount of money you can make monthly as a gamer. These factors include skills, reputation, and social following. Of course, the earning will also vary from player to player and team to team. Nonetheless, professional esports gamers can earn $1,000 to $5000 every month on average.

How esports players earn money

There are multiple ways that esports players can make money every month. However, how you can earn money as a professional gamer depends on the games you choose to compete in. Here are the most common ways that esports players earn money.


Salaries are usually the most lucrative ways that esports players use to make money as they’re paid regularly by the teams they represent. However, the salary that every player gets depends on the team’s size, the player’s skills, which games they compete in, and the competitions the teams participate in.

At the top level, some esports players are paid millions every year by leading esports teams like Cloud9. In 2020, LoL star Perkz was signed on Cloud9 for $6 million on a three-year contract. Several other players have commanded similar salaries over the last few years, including CS: Go player Robin Kool, who represents the Faze clan and earned over $900,000 in 2022.

Prize winnings

Prize winnings are basically the player’s share of what the team gets for ranking well in esports competitions. Most top-level esports events have large prize pools for the team, which allows winners to walk away with thousands of dollars. For instance, CS: GO’s competition Blast featured a $425,000 prize pool, with the winner receiving $200,000.

Esports prize pools may vary depending on the game. When a team of players is signed to a particular organization, the prize money will be sent to the team first. However, the players’ contracts tend to have a particular contract that stipulates the percentage that they get.

Skin sales

Most multiplayer video games have a marketplace where wearable items are sold, also called skins. The skins tend to be weapon designs or characters. Some games like CS: GO, Rocket League and Rainbow Six Siege sell these game-specific skins and the publishers share the revenues with esports teams. For instance, the publisher of Rainbow Six Siege has skins with the brand names of several top teams like DarkZero Esports and Faze Clan.  

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