Turn Your Dream Into Reality: 9 Tips for Becoming a Professional Gamer
Did you know that you can earn $1500 a month just by streaming games? For the select few, it can even be as high as $5000. If you want to be a full-time professional gamer, you need to know the steps to take to get there.
Unfortunately, it takes a lot of hard work and effort, but luckily it is achievable. Below, we give you our 9 must-know tips for becoming a professional gamer.
1. Select the Right Game
No professional gamer is good at every game that comes their way. In fact, almost all professional gamers have a specialism. Think of it as training for an Olympic event, where people train in one discipline, not a multitude of them.
There are several different types of games out there for you to specialize in. From sports games to driving and fighting, you will know which you are best at.
Also, you must select one that interests you, as you will be spending a lot of time on it if you want to make money as a gamer. Being a professional requires the training and dedication you would apply to any sport. If you get bored halfway and decide to change, you will never achieve the goal you have set.
Once you have decided on the type of game, you need to decide on the actual game itself. Start by looking at games that have a following and are played at the competition level. Make a list of games in that field, then play each to get a feel for the games themself.
2. Get Equipped
If you have not already done this, then you need to choose a platform. A lot of competitive gaming is done on PC but there are exceptions. The game you choose and your previous history with PC and consoles will also dictate this.
If you are a console gamer but always wanted to switch, now may be the time to do it. As you will essentially be working from the ground up, it is better to do it now rather than later.
Of course, choosing a platform means getting the right equipment. If you want to make money as a professional video game player, you will need to put a little money into getting the right equipment.
The most important thing to have is a powerful gaming PC. Without it, then glitches and delays will render your dreams impossible. These choices are all equipped and ready to go for the modern, competitive gamer.
After this, you need to choose your setup. Your controller is the most important, be it a fighting stick, steering wheel, or gaming mouse. Try out a range of different ones and find one that suits you.
After this, find a chair. You will be in this for a long time, so it has to be comfortable. Look outside the realm of traditional gaming chairs, as you may find something more suitable, comfortable, and less costly.
3. Watch Professionals
There are no courses or schools to teach professional gaming. Because of this, you have to find your own sources of education. The most available and useful of these is to watch other gamers.
When streaming, people are always discussing what they are doing and how they do it. They will also often make videos with tutorials and advice. In fact, you can find these for most games on Youtube.
Study one professional video game player in depth. Watch their skills and tactics. When you feel you have learned enough from them, then move on to watching other players.
4. Practice, Practice, Practice
Esports is a competitive field, and you won’t get anywhere without hard work and practice. You need to start treating your game like you would any other sport. That involves training.
Create yourself a schedule. Start by penciling out your weekly routine. Fill it in with other commitments, such as your day job, study, and sleeping.
Once you can see where your free time is, schedule your practice sessions. Give yourself specific targets to attain. Don’t just play the game, but choose different aspects that you will work on in that session.
If you don’t have enough time, then you need to make it. You may need to retire from other leisure activities or get up earlier than usual to accommodate the new regime.
5. Build a Professional Gamer Following
If you want sponsorship or invites to competitions, then you need to get noticed. Once you are good enough at your game and have a big enough online following, offers will start to come in quickly.
Start by streaming your games. This does not have to be done all the time, but you should make a dedicated slot so people know when you will be online and stick with it. Gaming outside of these times will be practice time when you can experiment and train without the gaze of others.
Once you have a weekly schedule set up, start to save and upload some of your games. Make tutorials and upload them to social media. Make sure that you are using the correct hashtags and keywords, so they attract even more attention.
Once you have this, try to get some press. Go on gaming podcasts and talk to others about the game. Ask to write guest articles on blogs about the game itself.
The next step is to get to know other gamers. Start by visiting forums and social groups. Talk with the people on there, and share news and tips with the people in the gaming community.
The next step in becoming a professional videogame player is to join a team. Don’t try to jump straight to this step, as no one will want you if they do not know who you are. Build up a solid reputation and fanbase, and you may find you have multiple offers coming so you can choose your preferred one.
7. Compete in Competitions and Leagues
Once you get here, you are almost on your way to earning a professional gamer salary. However, you need to start winning before the money will come.
Competitions and leagues can either be done solo or with your team. If you are part of the community, you will know about the way in advance through the game’s developers and sponsors. Make sure you sign up in advance and notify your team if you need to do so.
Start small, going to local gaming leagues and competitions. Supplement it with online tournaments and leagues, such as ESEA and MLG. While you won’t yet be earning much money, winning will bring you a step closer to the big competitions.
8. Compete in Tournaments
Tournaments differ from competitions and leagues, in that they are often instant elimination events. Leagues and competitions will often be played over a long period, and you will gain points based on wins and draws.
Esports tournaments are much shorter affairs. They often run a knockout-style system. You are drawn against an opponent, and if you win, then you go through to the next stage until only one player is left.
Some games work much better in a tournament format, while others are better in leagues. Start by joining smaller online tournaments. They apply a different type of pressure and will help you manage stress when you get to the big leagues.
Next, you need to get to live events. These are the big events, where people will come to see you play live in a venue. As well as being a great event, they should start to provide you with some income for playing, which will increase the higher you get in tournaments.
9. Get a Sponsorship
The final goal is to get yourself a sponsorship. While tournaments will get you some serious winnings, a regular professional gamer salary will only arrive when you get a sponsorship deal.
Sponsorships work on the premise that brands and companies will pay you a regular income to endorse their products. This will mean wearing their merchandise and using their equipment during events and on your social media. You get paid a regular wage and they build brand awareness.
While this is exciting, you should consider who you sign up with first and not take any offer that comes along. If you sign a deal to use specific equipment, it may not be the gear you prefer and could impact your performance. There have also been instances where gamers have had issues with the politics and mission of certain companies, so be aware of what you are signing up for.
The longer you put it off, the longer you will be in your old routine. If you want to be a professional gamer, you need to start immediately. Get playing, choose your game, set up, and practice!
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