Like any other sport, eSports requires a lot of hard work and practice to get good, not to mention all the expensive equipment and the struggle, especially if you’re planning to play at the international level.
In this article, we discuss whether or not it is a practical option for the average Indian teenager to become a professional eSports athlete.
But first, let’s take a sneak peek inside a typical day of a pro gamer to understand better what it takes to be an eSports player.
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What does it take to be a pro gamer?
There’s not too much of a daily schedule; all pro eSports players do is play their respective titles for as long as 14 hours a day. They eat lunch and dinner over match replays and strategy discussions with coaches and analysts.
Apart from the usual training at the team’s facilities, most players often play “solo queue” at home. These players hardly have the time to catch up with family and friends as they are always at the game.
On top of it, almost all competitive titles are updated every few months with minor tweaks here and there, which these players have to master as well. They’re always playing, always learning, always getting better.
But is it worth it?
Just like other pro players, eSports players are also hired by different teams on a contract basis. According to Riot, a video game developer and pro eSports tournament organiser, every player in the League of Legends receives a salary — the minimum being $12,500 for a 28-match season.
However, this can go much higher. For games requiring a five-person squad, CS: GO, for example, could range from $2,000-10,000 per player. For games like DOTA2, the prize pool can be up to $20 million.
In addition to basic compensation and sponsorships, players usually compete in individual tournaments, which often have attractive prize pools.
However, when you compare these numbers to what an Indian eSports player earns, the enthusiasm quickly disappears.
India still lags behind
India still lags regarding the number of annual competitions, and the prize pool is often not that attractive. Besides, only a small number of Indian teams and players are skilled enough to participate in events at the international level.
But that does not mean that it isn’t worth the effort. With the constant rise of eSports in India, more and more events are happening daily, and support is improving.
As more and more people turn to Twitch, a video game streaming service, Indian streamers are making a decent sum of money.
Competitions like Dew Arena, ROG Majors and frequent ESL leagues offer decent prize pools (up to INR 1 million sometimes) and happen regularly.
So if you’re good at the game you play, you might earn even more than you expected. Taking up an eSports career in India is still a leap of faith. If you’re willing, however, this might be the best time to make it.