If you have been of the thinking that gaming is a pastime reserved for lazy couch potatoes, think again; all that has changed. Gaming is no longer just ‘something to pass the time’ on a stay-at-home Sunday. It has morphed into a viable way to earn public respect, a following, and even earn money. Many gamers have even been able to secure themselves a long term, lucrative career in the e-sports industry. How’s that for impressive!
Parents can no longer get upset when they find their children whacking away at their keyboards into the small hours of the night. Now they are learning valuable skills that could serve them well in the business world later in life. Skills, you ask? Yup, it’s true. Modern gaming platforms are helping pre-college goers develop in terms of confidence, teamwork, time management, and creating and implementing strategy.
Becoming involved in the esports industry as a career prospect is about more than just playing and enjoying video games. Your role won’t necessary involve being a player, which means that positions you can expect to fit into include the likes of being a host, sales specialist, marketing guru, journalist, coach, referee, gaming organization owner/entrepreneur, social media marketer, event planner, high definition streamer, or a sponsor. Careers in esports are as varied as many other industries.
What to Do
At this point, you probably just want to know what you can do to get more actively involved and get a step closer to landing an esports career. So, let’s look at a few things that you can do.
- Find Your Niche/game
You are probably thinking that esports and gaming is already a niche, but finding your true niche is about more than that. Having a broad area of interest makes it difficult for you to find opportunities. Narrow it down to the types of games that you enjoy. For many, this is first-person shooter games whereas for others it’s fighting games, or real-time strategy games that tickle their fancy. Once you have decided on the type of games you want to get involved in, you can start to find your way into the industry by specialising in that game or area of games.
- Get Specific About Platforms
Once you know what game types are for you, look at the gaming platforms and determine which platform you would like to focus on. Most people opt for a PC for online gaming, but there are also other platforms, such as PlayStation and Xbox. Give it a bit of thought.
- Educate Yourself & Connect/Network While Doing So
Some of the pros that are already involved in the esports industry will have uploaded videos, tutorials, instructions and lessons to help other plays improve on their skills. Use these resources to brush up on your knowledge and skills, but also use them for connecting and networking. Build a relationship with the pros by asking for their advice, commenting on their posts, and seeking out their guidance. It’s a great way to build report with people already in the industry. You know what they say…it’s about who you know.
- Achieve skill Through Practice
There’s a saying that goes “practice makes perfect” and it’s true. If you want to become skilled enough to achieve a career in the esports industry as a player, you can’t just be good. You must be the best. The only way to become the best is to play and practice more than anyone else you know. You may think it’s a big gamble if you will ever make it and stand out from the crowd but it’s not a game of chance, it is more like a game of high variance slots, high risk–high reward. If you never try you will never know.
- Get Into Competitions
You need to start building your gaming and esports CV. The best way to do this is to enter competitions that lead to tournaments and championships. You can get into competitions if you are part of a gaming league, so looking into joining one if you want to follow a career in esports. You should also investigate getting involved in online tournaments. The more exposure you get; the better. Here is a list of top esports that pay the most.
- Get to Work on Your Personal Brand
If you already have a good name for yourself by the time you are ready to enter the esports industry, you will land yourself a career quickly and easily. Start now! You need to focus on building an online presence that people love to follow. Make yourself available and ensure that you have content online that people love to consume. Because you are focusing on a niche group of people, this should be simple. Create video tutorials, do a bit of live streaming, write interesting blog posts, and keep updating your YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, and Instagram accounts regularly.
A word of advice is to keep a balanced and healthy lifestyle while you are working towards a career in esports. You still need to get enough sleep, food, and exercise while you are practicing, and it is important that you don’t deprive yourself of these things. A healthy and balanced person will go further in the esports industry than someone who is tired, strung-out, and stressed. Hopefully these pointers have helped to spur you on to activating an esports career that is fun, rewarding, and lucrative. Good luck!
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