Indian gamers are globally famous for their love for mobile gaming. Last year, four of the top five highest-paid video game players earned their money playing mobile PUBG. Naman “Mortal’ Mathur earned $18,225; making him the highest-paid mobile gamer in the country alongside his partner Yash “VipeR” Soni.
The top 15 Indian gamers earned at least $10,000 while the top 100 players earned $1200 or more. So, how do India gamers make their money?
Winning tournaments is the primary way Indian gamers earn their money. Mortal, for example, made his entire fortune of $18,225 in four matches last year. He participated in PMCO Spring India and emerged first, taking home $15,000.
The famous streamer also participated in two PUBG Mobile Club Open challenges, emerging 12th placed in both cases. As a result, he won $2,626. Mortal earned his last $600 at an event held last September after emerging 13th.
For the uninitiated, PUBG is a multiplayer Battle Royale game that pools together 100 gamers in a single virtual environment. They then have to compete for weapons and resources as they take down each other. The last man standing is treated as the winner.
Although PUBG is popular with Indian gamers, it’s not the only game they play. Dota 2, CS: GO, Overwatch and Chess are pretty standard with players. As proof, over a dozen eSports professionals in India earned over $10,000 each playing Dota 2.
Many eSports players in India tend to compete as independent gamers. However, some established teams also play in duos or fours. These teams have managers, marketers and financiers who ensure they get paid monthly.
Indian gamers don’t earn as much money in salaries as the top eSports squads in the US or Europe. But they get paid nonetheless. Fortunately, wages are just one way how they make their money.
Winning tournaments as we earlier mentioned is the most common method to earn money from eSports in India. That also applies to casino gamers, a gaming category mushrooming rapidly around the world.
Visit topslotsindia.com to view some of the best online casinos for Indian players. Most of these casinos have bonus programs for new players. But that’s not the only reason why people play casino games. The fact that you could win millions of dollars from a slot machine worth $1 makes casino games too lucrative to ignore.
If you are a gamer, you probably know a handful of Indian players who stream on Twitch or YouTube. These gamers play their favourite games in front of large audiences of people. In turn, they make money by monetizing their channels with adverts or marketing content.
Below is a list some of the most popular Indian streamers and their channels:
- Dynamo Gaming—5.66 Million Subscribers on YouTube
- Kronten Gaming—1.7 Million Subscribers on YouTube
- Alpha Clasher—over one million subscribers on YouTube
- Octo Owais—300,000 subscribers on YouTube
- The Rawknee Games—1.4 million subscribers on YouTube
Needless to say, YouTube is the favourite platform for many Indian streamers. Again, advertising seems to be the primary way these streamers make their money.
In the USA and Europe, sponsorships contribute 40% of how gamers make their money. Global brands like Coca Cola, BMW, YouTube and BMW splash millions of dollars to partner with popular eSports teams and players.
Moneywise, sponsorships make up over $400 million of the global $1.1 billion eSports industry. Unfortunately, little of that money benefits Indian players. If it did, top gamers would compete for a lot more than the $15,000 Mortal won in his best competition.
That being said, Indian gamers still benefit from sponsorship money. ESL, one of eSports’ top organizers globally, regularly sponsors gaming competitions in India. Mountain Dew, ASUS and PUBG also finance tournaments as well.
Of course, India’s eSports scene is still growing. And considering it’s mushrooming incredibly fast, it could become a massive sector in five years.
Gamers don’t get money from ticket sales directly. But the cash trickles down to their tickets through tournament winnings or allowances. In India, most tournaments allow fans to attend events free of charge or pay little money in gate tickets.
As such, event sponsors don’t focus so much on ticket sales and instead make creating awareness about eSports their primary goal. It’s an excellent strategy that has been helping the country’s gaming scene grow steadily.
Globally, North America and Europe are where eSports organizers make millions of dollars regularly by charging for tournaments. Last year’s Fortnite World Cup, for example, earned Epic Games $5 million from ticket sales.
While PUBG has the resources needed to host a tournament independently, organizers like ESL depend on media rights for money. ESL has partnerships with Facebook and Twitch, where it earns millions of dollars. In exchange, these platforms broadcast all tournaments organized by ESL.
Internationally, Twitch and Facebook aren’t alone in paying for broadcasting rights. Sky Sports UK, ESPN and YouTube are other competitions in the niche. Twitch, for example, paid $90 million last year to broadcast the Overwatch League. YouTube paid over $50 million to partner with multiple leagues also.
In this age of social media influencers, anyone with over 10,000 social media fans can make money through their fame. Usually, a famous gamer can make money by advertising products on behalf of a company. Or they could sell merchandise to their legions of fans.
Depending on their popularity, a gamer can make between $500 and $1 10,000 per twitter, YouTube or Twitch post. Streamers as famous as Ninja make up to $1 million promoting games.
Compared to Britain and the USA, India’s eSports scene is in its infancy. However, it’s established enough to allow gamers like Mortal to make up to $15,000 per competition.
It’s also attracted international brands: ESL, Mountain Dew and PUBG, to name a few. Against that backdrop, the industry could be incredibly huge in the next couple of years.