Turn Your Gaming Passion To Profession With E-Sports
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In our country, barely 10-12 years back, making a full-time career playing video games was considered as an impractical thought. If any youngster would consider taking up gaming or e-sport as a profession, parents would rather advise her against it. However, things have changed a lot in the past few years. Thanks to the massive Internet and smartphone penetration across the nation as well as rising purchasing power of the consumers and availability of affordable gaming hardware, an increasing number of the millennial and youth are getting attracted towards competitive online gaming, and further considering this as a legit income stream and/or career option.
In this context, a fair bit of inspiration can be drawn from Naman Mathur aka ‘Mortal’, a 23-year-old Indian PUBG superstar whose gaming-based Youtube channel has more than 4.3 million subscribers as of date. Mortal, along with his team members, recently triumphed the PUBG Mobile India Series Championship 2019, securing a total cash prize of INR 30 lakh and a brand new OPPO F11 Pro. Or, let us take the case of 24-year-old Tirth Mehta from Gujarat, who created history winning the first ever e-sports medal for India during a video game tournament at the 2018 Asian Games.
To be honest, there are thousands of gamers across the country today who are ready to take the plunge and make big names and fame in competitive gaming. In this article, we will take a close look at the prospects and job opportunities in the e-sports industry in India and the globe.
Understanding e-Sports and its Scope and Opportunities
To put it simply, e-sports or electronic sports refers to any type of organized multiplayer gaming or sports competitions. While semi-professional video game tournaments were conducted in somewhat amateurish manner until the late 20th century, it has evolved to become a much more serious and fiercely competitive spectator sport in recent years, thereby turning e-sports into a widely popular concept and phenomenon.
Contrary to popular perception, e-sports players are not just gaming ‘nerds’; they are the ones who may spend a large part of their days (around 6-10 hours) in practicing, sharpening their skill sets, as well as strategizing and coordinating with their teammates figuring out optimal attack positions, and so on, even when there isn’t a match or tournament going on. It is important to highlight that e-sports can no longer be viewed merely as a leisure/entertainment activity; professional e-sports players need to toil hard and maintain the same level of dedication, passion, and discipline (if not more) as any traditional sports’ athlete.
Some of the most commonly played and most profitable genres vis-a-vis e-sports include real-time strategy games, fighting games, card games, multiplayer battle arena, etc., and examples of some of the popular competitive games/tournaments played globally are League of Legends, CounterStrike, PUBG, Call of Duty, FIFA, and Hearthstone, to name a few. In order to become a successful pro e-sportsperson, one needs pick her niche or a specific game (where she would develop skills and expertise over the years), and remain focused and consistent. Having excellent hand-eye coordination and reflexes can be of help, but only up to a certain point. In almost every e-sport of the modern day, sharpening your skills via rigorous practice and gaining competitive advantage are the things that matter the most (especially when it comes to beating your competitors).
With over 400 million e-sports fans present in over 150 countries, e-sports presents a prolific opportunity of personal growth as well as building fan base and communities. The global e-sports market has been estimated to grow at a CAGR of 18.6 per cent between 2018 and 2023, and would be worth $2,175 million by 2023. At par with global peers, the market size, reach, and opportunities are growing in India too. According to a study by Indian Federation of Sports Gaming and KPMG, India shall have 628 million avid gamers by 2020, and therefore the audience share and revenue generated through e-sports will also continue to enhance at a fast pace.
Today, a large number of e-sports tournaments and/or championships are high-value, big-budget affairs offering prize money to the tune of millions, and are often live streamed through platforms like Twitch, Youtube Gaming, etc. Further, content development, marketing and distribution of gaming-related content/accessories have paved the way to newer opportunities. Once a seasoned pro-gamer retires or decides to give up as a player in the competitive gaming space (usually after achieving a certain level of fame and success), she can opt to become a shout caster (like a commentator in traditional sports), analyst, coach, or gaming live streamer.
If you have a deep passion and love for e-sports, but feel that you do not have what it takes to be a pro e-sportsperson or hardcore gamer, you can still choose to pursue a lucrative career in any one of the following roles:
● Game developer (needs to know coding etc.)
● Content developer for e-sports
● Community manager
● E-sports journalist/reporter
● Marketing/sales manager for e-sports brands
● E-sports event manager
As mentioned earlier, the e-sports market (including video games, mobile gaming, PC gaming, and other niches) is currently booming, and is expected to witness healthy growth and create a multitude of job opportunities in the coming years. With the influx of an array of gaming cafes/parlors and e-sports start-ups, social and more interactive gaming experiences with augmented reality and virtual reality technology, coupled with huge investments from major tech and gaming giants and corporations, India is catching up with the rest of the world in terms of e-sports, and the future looks very bright. If you are someone who is serious about converting your gaming hobby into profession, or even looking at earning good side income by leveraging your outstanding gaming skills, right now is a great time to jump in and join the e-sports bandwagon.