It is often mentioned to “Do something that you love for a living, and you never have to work a day for the rest of your life.” What exactly then, keeps a person glued to the digital world these days? Apart from the scourge of social media, games tend to take up a huge chunk of your time without knowing it. Just take a closer look at people around you the next time you hop on the train or bus: most folks would be glued to their smartphones or tablets, furiously tapping away at the screen while engaged in their favorite game.
If you are really good at something, why not make money out of it? This is the core idea that has led to the opening up of electronic sports, or better known as e-sports. Commercial sponsors have seen the phenomenal growth of e-sports over the years, and more recently decided to take the plunge and jump on board the bandwagon while overseeing a jump in the overall prize money. With data and connectivity being extremely affordable across the board these days, online gaming has become such a huge trend, so much so that it is possible to make a living by being a professional online gamer.
There are many different kinds of online games to choose from, where some are cerebral in nature while others require extremely fast reflexes and quick thinking in order to emerge the victor. The likes of PUBG (PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds) have certainly caught the imagination of millions since it was released less than a year ago across multiple platforms, but if there is one particular online game that continues to draw in the audiences with matches analyzed via commentaries and TV channels, it would be the undisputed king of e-sports games: DOTA 2.
Falling under the genre of Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA), this free-to-play video game (minus irritating ads) was developed and published by Valve Corporation. DOTA 2 is the stand-alone sequel to Defense of the Ancients (DOTA), where it is duked out between two teams of five players each, where each team will have their own base to defend while having to search out and kill off the opposition team’s characters within the confines of a map. All ten players will be able to choose a “hero” of their choice, an extremely powerful character who will have a direct impact on the game due to his/her abilities. The winning team is the first one that destroys a specific structure that is called the “Ancient”, located deep within the belly of the opposing team’s base.
While DOTA 2 has a steep learning curve and is extremely complex to master, it is also very easy to pick up for virtually everyone. This makes it so appealing, which is what fuels the dreams of many a pimple-faced teenager in hopes of making it big in the e-sports arena. There are many different leagues and tournaments for DOTA 2 worldwide, with premium DOTA 2 tournaments drawing in the very best players with prize pools that go beyond several million US dollars, making it the highest amount for any e-sport at the moment. A great example of this is firstblood.io with a huge selection of tournaments every day.
Of course, before you are able to compete with such elite level players, you would need to make sure that you have the necessary skill to go toe-to-toe with the very best of them. You can always begin by checking out listings for local tournaments in your area or state, in order to gauge just where you stand amongst the giants. Once you have a better idea on how high your skill level is and whether you have what it takes in order to turn professional, then it is time to start writing in to various companies who have eked out sponsorship deals in e-sports tournaments in order to ask them whether they would like to be your sponsor. It is not easy, as these companies will be flooded by such requests on an almost daily basis, but it is worth a shot if you have an enviable gaming track record to back you up. If you find yourself unable to break through even in a local tournament, it is best not to quit your day job.
Of course, that would be simplifying matters as you can also earn money by playing online games through “pay-to-play” titles, but the main question that you should ask yourself is this: is it worth the amount of my time invested in playing such games to obtain a pittance compared to what my current job pays me per hour? Performing such a simple calculation would make it easy to arrive at a decision, unless of course, you have too much time to kill on your daily commute.