current state of competitive gaming
August 15, 2008 12:32 PM   Subscribe

What video game competitions award the most prize money? How much are kids pulling down per month or per year? Playing which games? This is mostly an international question. From what I can tell, this isn't as big in the US as it is in Korea, Sweden, and ... where else? Are kids in the US making a living playing games competitively?
posted by low affect to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I have no idea as to amounts but I think you will find that it is not "kids" engaged in this kind of activity. Every event I've ever seen advertised was 18+ (or whatever the local age of majority was).
posted by Riemann at 12:46 PM on August 15, 2008

Yeah, in US, it's not least from my experience. High buy-in, travel, etc. I know of two people who have won a fair amount of money (both playing Halo 2) and one is in his late 20s and the other is in his early 30s.
posted by iconomy at 12:55 PM on August 15, 2008

Response by poster: I know of two people who have won a fair amount of money

Approximately even?

No more comments on the word "kids"
posted by low affect at 1:02 PM on August 15, 2008

Here's evidence of current prize money for a single event. $20,000 for first place. Extrapolate from that. Or use google.
posted by dersins at 1:15 PM on August 15, 2008

Many of the people in top tier competition for Halo 3 (in the Major League Gaming tournaments that dersins linked) are in their mid to late teens, early twenties at most. Walshy, formerly of Final Boss (Halo 1/2's most dominant team) is one of the older (top tier) players and is 24, I believe.
posted by Pantengliopoli at 1:22 PM on August 15, 2008

Doh! Sorry -- didn't see your note to ignore the age component...

From this link, there's $70,000 on the line at the Toronto MLG tournament. $85,000 at the NYC MLG tournament. A lot of the money for the top 8 teams comes from sponsorships, as well.
posted by Pantengliopoli at 1:35 PM on August 15, 2008

posted by comatose at 1:44 PM on August 15, 2008

You might be interested in this recent article from 1UP regarding the current state of pro gaming in the US. It also references a new book out called Game Boys: Professional Videogaming's Rise from the Basement to the Big Time, about the current turmoil in pro PC gaming concerning the rise of DirectTV sponsored Championship Gaming Series which has usurped many of the sponsors of the formerly disparate video game competitions.
posted by sophist at 2:37 PM on August 15, 2008

Sorry, the book is actually more about two particular teams' rivalry in the pro Counterstrike: Source tournament circuit, but has great info on many aspects of current pro gaming in the US.
posted by sophist at 2:41 PM on August 15, 2008

This fellow made 100,000 at a warcraft tourney, then 18,000 coming in second place at a starcraft tourney. Starcraft is still a very big game in Korea, perhaps as popular as major sports.
posted by Citizen Premier at 6:12 PM on August 15, 2008

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