I still remember when I was a kid, my mother would tell me that video games never helped anyone achieve anything.
While that might have been accurate back then, video games have now become a multi-billion dollar industry – which employs thousands of people worldwide.
In fact, one of the world’s most popular Youtube personalities, PewDiePie, is a gamer- commentator. His youtube channel is the second most subscribed channel ever, and he makes close to $12 million every year, from his video content.
While that might be an extreme case of internet popularity, you can still make quite a fair amount of money by just playing video games.
The best part is that as the years go by, this will become an even bigger industry and you can make even more money.
Here are some of the most common ways, people have been making money with games:
1. Play On These Websites
You aren’t going to get rich playing on these websites, but you can definitely make a bunch of money on the side. Two of the best platforms for online gaming include Swagbucks and InboxDollars.
Swagbucks has a number of easy and engaging games that anyone can sign up for. You also, get a $10 bonus on just signing up.
Inboxdollars, just like Swagbucks has a number of online surveys, games, etc. that you can do to make a few dollars on the side. You even get $5 for signing up!
2. Farming Gaming Currency and Account
Farming gold is the practice of acquiring in-game currency which you can later sell for real money. This is exceptionally popular in MMORPGs (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games) like World of Warcraft but recently branched out into mobile games such as Clash Royale, Ragnarok M, and many others.
In these games, you have a character and the more you play, the more you find equipment and hidden treasures, which you can use to level up your character. The more advanced and experienced your character is, the more people will pay to purchase that character. Some high-level characters can be sold for up to $1000.
In other games, you can even acquire secret weapons or gear which you can then sell for real-world currency. Plenty of people, when they first start out, instead of playing with a low ranking character, they pay to get themselves a more advanced character. That way they can take part in more quests and adventures.
Sites such as PlayerUp hosts forums and marketplaces where people can list their accounts and sell them to other gamers securely.
3. Start a gaming blog
If you’re really passionate about gaming and you think you have something to contribute to the gaming world, then starting a blog might be the way to go. Sites such as Kotaku and IGN has been the go-to blog for gamers
Blogs are absolutely indispensable when it comes to making money online. There are plenty of ways of making money from your blog – the most common method is becoming an affiliate marketer.
Every time someone reads one of your reviews of a game and then buys that game through the affiliate link on your website, you get paid a commission.
You can even enable Google Adsense and have ads running on your website. Every time someone clicks on those ads, you get paid a small commission. Once your blog begins to get better established, plenty of gaming companies will actually approach so that you review their products and then sell them through your site.
However, in order to have people visit your blog, you need to consistently put out high- quality content that is informative and engaging. This will require a lot of hard work, and above all, patience.
4. Set up a Youtube channel
If you’re setting up a blog, you might as well complete your online presence by setting up a youtube channel. There is no dearth of gaming channels on youtube nor of people who have made it big with their Youtube channels.
Gaming channels like Rezendeevil, Markiplier, and Jacksepticeye have millions of subscribers and make several million every year. The best thing about Youtube channels is that there is no limit on what you can do with it.
You can post game reviews, videos of your friends playing the game, or you can even make game-walkthroughs or tutorials. Many other YouTubers such as RandomFrankP focuses on gaming gear and accessories and has used affiliate marketing as one of their top ways of earning. You can even put out videos on how to find easter eggs, or you can discuss trailers and latest developments in the gaming world, the possibilities are endless.
Making and posting videos on Youtube is fairly inexpensive (all you need is a mic and a video recording tool) and setting up a youtube channel is completely free. As your viewership and followers grow, you can start making money through advertising and sponsorships.
5. Set Up A Twitch Channel
If you’re a gamer, you must have heard of Twitch. With gamers such as Ninja and Shroud raking up tens of thousands of followers on Twitch. For the uninitiated though, Twitch is a service which lets you game and then livestream it to your fans and followers across the Twitch network. In short, it’s a broadcasting service.
Twitch has several subscription options from $4.99 to $24.99. There is also a free option, which you can use to start with.
Plenty of gamers have turned Twitch into their full-time jobs and spend many hours every day, simply gaming and live streaming it. It’s very simple, the more views you get, the more money you stand to make.
You can get a Twitch partner account once you start racking up about 500 regular views with every one of your video streams The more subscribers your stream gets, the more you get paid. For each subscriber on your channel, Twitch will pay you $2.50 – which is a pretty good amount.
You can even ask for donations from your channel. Thus if people really like your content and admire your skills and want to show support, they can make personal donations to you.
Twitch also easily integrates with popular consoles like the Xbox One, PS4, and also other streaming services like Amazon Fire TV and Google Chromecast. This makes it very easy to use and super convenient.
6. Become a professional Esports gamer
If you routinely beat all your friends in games like Dota2, CS:GO, PUBG, or Apex Legends and you think you have a knack for gaming, you might want to become a professional gamer.
Gaming tournaments are everywhere nowadays, and there are plenty of teams and leagues, for example, Fnatic’s esports league. They are every bit like your usual football or basketball sporting leagues.
There are also many online tournaments hosted by sites such as FaceIt where any players can join tournaments and work their ranks up, many professional gamers were picked from FaceIt due to their ranking system, and easy matchmaking.
The top earners in 2018 were playing Dota 2, and have expected lifetime earnings ranging from $800,000 to $3.7 million. League of Legends pros makes between $810,000 and $1.1 million. CounterStrike: Global Offensive players trailing behind, but they’re still within the six-figure range for lifetime earnings.
The biggest gaming tournaments in the world have cash prizes of several million dollars which you would then share among your teammates.
This isn’t passive income though, and you’ll need to keep on practising and getting better at it if you want to hit the big leagues. Once you get yourself known out there, you’re going to start to get sponsors and then you’ll start representing them at various tournaments around the world.
If you want to get an idea of how much professional gamers make and what their lives are like, just check out Optic Gaming. They are one of the best-recognized gaming teams in the world today.
7. Become a game-tester
You can become a beta tester. All the well-reputed companies have people test out their games before they hit the market and they routinely hire game testers for full-time jobs.
Now, the truth is your job might not be as fun as you had pictured because you probably won’t be playing well-known games and the games wouldn’t be fully designed when you start playing them. Your job would be to find flaws and imperfections in the game and then report it to your superiors.
Now, there are both junior and senior game testers. Senior game testers usually have a bit of game development knowledge, or they are well-established gamers. Plenty of players who have well-established Twitch channels have daytime jobs as game testers.
8. Offer Technical Support
Game tester isn’t the only job you can get at a video game development company as a lot of them have begun to have a dedicated customer service team for their players.
When players get stuck on a certain level or they have other problems with their subscription, character attributes, etc. and they can’t find a solution to that problem, they call up technical support.
Technical Support professionals can make up to $40,000 per year source please, which is a good enough starting salary, but you would still ideally want to have something on the side.
9. Video Game Developer
Now, a job as a video game developer usually requires coding skills and also a degree in game development. However, if you think you have a knack for analyzing graphics, you could do an online course on game development to learn up the basics.
After that, all you need to do is find an internship at a small-time game development company, then you work your way up from there. This is a full-time career though, and I would caution that just because you like playing games doesn’t mean you’ll like developing them.
Well, that’s it from me today. The video game industry might seem hard to break into at first, but with a bit of luck and a lot of hard work, you’ll get there.
If not, you can always try to make some income on the side by employing some of the methods we outlined above.
Jeremy has been running several online businesses behind his laptop for the past 5 years and he has worked as a freelance web developer previously. A trained marketer by profession, he also has Ruby on Rails and web development knowledge. His forte lies in eCommerce, SEO and content marketing. He’s been featured on Vice, Thrive Global, YFS Magazine, Forbes and several other publications. He prefers to connect with people on LinkedIn.