How do Gaming Celebrities Make Money?

The gaming industry is highly profitable these days, and not just to developers and console manufacturers. Gaming celebrities are making millions streaming their favourite games on Twitch or by winning competitions such as the FIFA 20 World Cup.

The most famous gamers make money in multiple ways, some which earn them millions of dollars every year. Below is a guide to every significant way your favorite gaming celebrities make money. Also, learn how you can also make some extra cash emulating influential gamers.

Live Streaming

Twitch is home to many famous streamers, even after Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, Shroud and a few other exceedingly well-known streamers left the platform. Google Live, YouTube and Facebook are three other streaming websites growing popular these days.

On Twitch, streamers make money through adverts, affiliate marketing, subscriptions, donations, and selling merchandise. You need a steady following for Twitch to place adverts on your channel. In the case of celebrity streamers, though, they have thousands of subscribers.

Jeremy Wang, who boasts of 10,000 viewers per stream and close to a million subscribers, claims he earned $20,000 from Twitch before he moved to Facebook. Ninja averaged $5 million per year before he joined Mixer. At the same time, Shroud commanded up to $3 million.

Getting started on Twitch, YouTube or Facebook is free. The challenge, though, is to attract viewers. Due to that, many streamers take months or years to attract a fan base willing to donate or to subscribe.

Winning Tournaments

Professional eSports players depend on their exceptional gaming skills to earn a livelihood. Precisely, they must win tournaments to make money. In doing so, they also attract sponsorships and endorsement deals that could rack up their income to the upwards of $1 million each year.

For the uninitiated, professional gamers work as teams or as individuals managed by organizations. They then compete in leagues like the Overwatch League or the ESL league. Like traditional sports, eSports players have competitions nearly every week and major tournaments every few weeks.

Often underrated, casino professionals are also part of the gaming community. They might not appear on Twitch frequently, but they also stream and compete for prize money. The most famous casino players have amassed millions of dollars, primarily by winning competitions.

The best way to get started with casino games is to grab £10 free no deposit bonuses and use them to play slots free of charge. If you enjoy the experience, you can then try out more games with your money.


Most gaming celebrities make most of their money from sponsorships. Precisely, the average eSports players earn 40% of their salary from money contributed by financiers. That means they need to compete and regularly win to attract high-paying brands like Coca Cola, BMW, Toyota and YouTube.

In Ninja’s case, Microsoft’s Mixer paid him $50 million to convince him to leave Twitch. It also paid Shroud around $20 million. YouTube, on the other end, is regularly sponsoring its top streamers to persuade them to stream on its platform exclusively.

 Before Microsoft stepped in, Ninja was still a major target by brands. Early last year, he got paid $1 million by Electronic Arts to endorse Apex Legends for a month. He also had partnerships with Adidas and Uber eats.

Ninja aside, many streamers have become celebrities. And in this age of influential gaming, they get paid thousands of dollars to endorse products to their fans. Sometimes these deals cause controversies, especially when the gamers don’t mention they got paid to promote the products. However, endorsements are still a crucial money-making method for players.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a massive moneymaker for many people online. But it works best to people who already have an audience they can market to. With gaming celebrities, their influence alone is an essential sales point.

Many of them spend only a few minutes highlighting what a product does and how it has helped them. They then recommend their fans to purchase the same products. Although they get paid 1% to 50% of each product they promote, they can make tens of thousands of pounds over a year.

Non-famous gamers can also make money from affiliate marketing. But they will always face the challenge of not having enough fans to promote products to. That’s why many of them are resulting in the next method of making cash.

Selling Merchandise

Gaming fans love to keep up with what’s trendy in the gaming world. They’ll buy T-shirts from their favourite streamers, souvenirs from events, collectables and limited commodities. As a result, almost every celebrity gamer has a line of products they are selling these days.

Unfortunately, gamers have a lot of competition from startups targeting the same markets. And because third party sellers tend to be cheaper sometimes, they command a significant share of the merchandise market.

Of course, gamers still love to support their favourite players. So, there’s always an opportunity for famous gamers who want to sell sweaters, mugs, underwear and gaming accessories to their fans.

Regular Salaries

Players contracted by teams don’t live through tournament winnings and sponsorship money alone. They also get paid fixed salaries each year, usually $10,000 to $80,000 for the most famous eSports players.

The salaries are determined by each player’s skills, win-rates, fame and reputation. Ember, a gaming organization, pays its top player sup to $75,000 per year in basic salaries. They also pay them $5,000 to $30,000 in bonuses.

Being an organized industry, players’ welfare is also sorted out. It’s common for teams to pay health insurance and college fees where necessary.

Other Means

Because professional gamers have short careers, they tend to widen their income avenues as much as possible while they are still famous. They could become active on Instagram to attract influencer money. They could blog, become match commentators or partner with game publishers.

A few gamers have elevated into team owners who find events and share revenues with players. Others have forged careers in the mainstream media to become sports journalists or TV show hosts. After all, everyone wants to keep making money!