How much does an esport player make?

The answer to this question varies wildly depending on the game and the level of the player, just like traditional sports. One of the best League of Legends players in the world, Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok, is reported to have a salary of $2.5 million dollars a year on top of other revenue streams he has available such as sponsorship opportunities and streaming. Faker is on the very top of the scale, a player playing in a minor European league could be making less than $10,000 a year or even playing for free in an attempt to get exposure.

Salaries in League of Legends are among the highest in the industry with the average salary of players in the North American League of Legends Championship Series (LCS), which is not even the top-level league in the world, being $320,000 a year. The highest salaries are reportedly in the Chinese League of Legends Pro League (LPL) which regularly attracts top players from Korea for this reason. While no exact statistics have been reported, the average is likely slightly higher than the LCS and top players in China earn a salary to rival even Fakers.

The minimum salary in Blizzard’s Overwatch league is $50,000 but the average reported salary is between $80,000 and $120,000. This is about what top-level Defence of the Ancients 2 (Dota 2) players make as well. The best players the Overwatch League has to offer are likely on double the average salary. Overwatch and League of Legends players are the clear highest earners but top-level Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) and Dota 2 players earn respectable salaries as well.

As mentioned earlier, many players play for free for years before they start to earn a decent salary just like traditional sports. What starts out as a hobby often becomes a career if the player is good enough. So the answer, in short, is that an esports players salary can range from nothing all the way up to multi-million dollar salaries.

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