Who are The Top 15 Highest Paid Professional Gamers In The World Today Online. Many of us were once upon a time dreaming that gaming will one day be considered a legitimate career, rather than just an awesome hobby, and this dream has now become a reality. eSports is the vision many of us had in our youth. Games like Dota 2, League of Legends, StarCraft II and COD are just some examples of games where individuals or teams compete with each other, and the prizes involved may surprise you.
This article will reveal the 15 highest-paid professional gamers in the world, with the best paid Dota 2 player having earned over $2,720,623.84 over 60 tournaments. In you’re not good with maths, this amount actually equates to $45,000 per match, more or less what we mortals make per year.
For those who are already familiar with gaming, there is little surprise that Dota 2 is where the money lays when it comes to eSports, with last year’s International 2016 prize pool equating to $20 million.
So without any further ado, prepare to be amazed:
15. Johan “N0tail” Sundstein ($1,057,144,16)
Johan “N0tail” Sundstein is a Danish Dota 2 gamer currently playing for OG. At the young age of 23, Johan has impressed the world with his talent -unsurprising since he shares the same name as Bach.
However, his journey started long time age. At the age of 15 N0tail was one of the youngest competitive Heroes of Newerth players in the world. After his initial debut as a solid mid player, he switched to Dota 2, where he took on the role of support, becoming increasingly appreciated for his performances as Chen and Wisp. While playing Dota 2, he got a taste of success and what gaming life can bring, having won 1st place in multiple events.
14. Daryl Koh “iceiceice” Pei Xiang ($1,091,900.76)
Daryl Koh “iceiceice” Pei Xiang is a Singaporean Dota currently playing For Mineski. The gamer started his career playing StarCraft II on a competitive level, from the release of the game in early 2011.
In August 2011, iceiceice made his first steps in the Dota 2 competitive, while also playing League of Legends and Heroes of Newerth, at the same time. Nonetheless, it was in Dota 2 that this gamer saw the most success, scooping massive earnings along the way.
13. Aliwi “w33” Omar ($1,160,778.58)
Aliwi “w33” Omar is a Syrian Dota 2 player who impresses in his career, as well as in his personal life –being fluent in multiple languages including English, Arabic, and Romanian. Once upon a time, Aliwi also studied chemical engineering.
Similar to other players on our list, w33 began his professional career as a DotA player, all the way back in 2004, at the mere age of 9. Years later in 2011, he emerged himself in Dota 2.
Nowadays w33 plays for Digital Chaos, an NA team who’s housed some of the best Dota players in the world, all of whom have gone on to win over $1 million, by “simply” playing Dota.
12. Gustav “S4” Magnusson ($1,165,145.88)
Gustav “S4” Magnusson is a Swedish Dota athlete who is currently playing for OG, along with N0tail. Like many others Dota players, S4 started out in Heroes of Newerth, a game which has a similar playstyle to Dota.
He is acclaimed for his brilliant performances as Magnus and Puck—two Dota characters used for offensive playing. It didn’t take S4 a long time to learn the ropes of Dota, and by the end of 2012, he was competing in No Tidehunter—a Swedish professional team.
Not long after, S4 went on to win The International 2013 while being on Alliance –his team at the time. The total prize pool of the event was a whopping $1,437,190.
11. Ludwig “Zai” Wahlberg ($1,184,448.04)
Ludwig “Zai” Wahlberg is a Swedish player who made a name for himself at an incredibly young age –another player who shares the name of a composer.
Like many other before him, Zai start out playing Heroes of Newerth, where he won an absorbing tournament called DreamHoN. After Dota 2 increased in popularity, so did some player’s interest in the game. As a result, in 2013, at the age of 14, Zai started his imposing career in Dota 2. Although he’s only 20 now, he has become one of the richest eSports gamers in the world.
10. Rasmus “MiSeRy” Filipsen ($1,335,957.12)
Rasmus “MiSeRy” Filipsen is a Danish Dota 2 Player who is considered to be extremely versatile. Having played the hard carry role on MYM, the mid role on CLG, the support role for a variety of different teams, and the offlane role for Team Secret, it's safe to say that this gamer has shown flexibility.
What better way to prove your worth than to demonstrate your skills than to be an all-around adaptable player? MiSeRy has a track record which goes back to 2008, and his highest earning year was 2016, where he secured $982,876.80.
It should also be mentioned the MiSeRy was part of Evil Geniuses and Digital Chaos, which are some of the best teams in the world.
9. Clement “Puppey” Ivanov ($1,348,176.36)
Clement “Puppey” Ivanov is an Estonian Dota 2 player who is currently the captain for Team Secret.
Considered one of the most creative and glorified captains in Dota, Puppey has made a name for himself by proving he’s not afraid to experiment and think outside the box. That’s why he’s incredibly popular amongst his teammates as well, as his ability to make bold and spontaneous decisions has won him a place in many prolific European teams.
Puppey’s creative nature also shows in his personal life, as he has a background in musical education, being able to play the violin, clarinet, guitar, and saxophone.In terms of his career, he started playing Dota back in 2007, with his highest earning year being 2015 – a total of $446,222.82
8. Zhang “Mu” Pan ($1,390,711.90)
Zhang “Mu” Pan is a Chinese player who retired from professional Dota 2. Along the way, Mu played for teams such as TongFu and participated at The International 2012 and The International 2013 tournaments.
The gamer started playing Dota in 2012, securing over $1,098,069.21 in 2014, which will now forever remain his highest earning year. In addition to this impressive sum, Mu’s legacy will always be remembered–an impressive player not afraid to take calculated risks which commonly paid off. Known as a high risk, high reward player, this would explain his huge earnings in 2014.
7. Zhihao “Hao” Chen ($1,759,847.03)
Zhihao “Hao” Chen is a Dota 2 Player who had taken a break from the competitive world, but has now returned and is playing for Vici Gaming.
Known to be one of the most aggressive players in the scene, Hao has displayed some notable skills, and this claim is backed up by his earnings –over $1,759,847.03.
The impassioned player has always shown a high appetite for winning by usually playing risky and wanting to destroy all enemies with every change he gets. His risky plays define his character, and both his rewards and shortcomings are the result of his in-game aggression.
6. Zhang “xiao8” Ning ($1,824,534.95)
Zhang “Xiao8” Ning is a Chinese Dota 2 player who is currently a member of Newbee Boss. Having started his career in 2010, Xiao8 is a relatively new player; however, in this short time, he has more than proven his worth –by 2017 xiao8 has raked in an impressive $1,824,534.
Like so many other players, Xiao8 bounced around various teams until he settled with Invictus Gaming. However, after his team failed to perform in The International 2011, Xiao8 moved to LGD Gaming.
5. Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling ($1,930,128.64)
Aui_2000 is an active Canadian Dota 2 player who started his professional career at an early age. During his teen years, Aui_2000 was known for playing DotA, however, he went on to attend college at University of British Columbia (UBC).
Although some may believe he would have stopped gaming at that point, Aui_2000 became even more competitive, and eventually joined the UBC Starcraft Club. After a while, he changed his focus to Dota 2. Having played as a support player for Evil Geniuses, Cloud9, and Digital Chaos, this gamer is much more than meets the eye -Aui_2000 had two jobs and went to school while funding his own career. It all paid off in the end, as several years later the player’s successes mounted up to a total of $1,930,128.64. Well done, Aui_2000!
4. Clinton “Fear” Loomis ($2,383,155.64)
Clinton “Fear” Loomis is an American Dota 2 player from Medford, Oregon. If you haven’t seen Fear in action, you might have caught him on the documentary “Free to Play”. Considered as one of the best North American players to ever exist, it’s hard to not root for Fear, as his determination is quite inspiring.
Like some of the best players on this list, Fear saw his beginnings on DotA. In 2005 he had formed and was the team captain of PluG Pullers Inc. As time went by, Fear became part of teams with other major players, like Puppey, MiSeRy, and UNiVeRsE, all of which we’ve seen or will see on this list.
Having proven his worth and skill set, Fear moved on to Dota 2. His versatility and adaptability to play in virtually any position at a competitive level has made and continues to make Fear a great possible addition to any team. He is currently the coach and a part-owner of Evil Geniuses.
3. Syed Sumail “SumaiL” Hassan ($2,401,426.34)
At present the mid player for Evil Geniuses, Syed Sumail “SumaiL” Hassan is an impressive gamer who just happens to be one of the youngest best-paid players in Dota 2. Due to his young age yet vast array of skills, SumaiL is widely regarded as one of the best players of all time.
SumaiL became immersed into DotA at the age of eight. Quickly establishing himself as one of the best upcoming talents in the North American scene, he climbed the ranks so fast that UNiVeRsE pushed for Evil Geniuses to recruit him.
Featured in Time Magazine’s top 30 influential teenagers of 2016, SumaiL is not only an incredible player but also an inspiration and example for others teenagers looking to make a career out of gaming.
2. Peter “ppd” Dager ($2,618,120.36)
Peter “ppd” is an American Dota 2 player best known for his time spent as support for Evil Geniuses. Amongst his long list of accomplishments, ppd has also been the captain of the team and has spent a year working as the CEO of Evil Geniuses.
Like many other Dota 2 players mentioned on this list, ppd’s journey started with Heroes of Newerth. After having played for numerous teams, he eventually switched to the increasingly popular Dota 2. However, in light of some team changes, he joined forces with legends UNiVeRsE, Fear, Zai, and Arteezy, and formed the S A D B O Y S team.
Ppd is known as one of the more outspoken players and is often referred to as the Salt King. Despite having won around $2,168,940.76 in prize money along with his team Evil Geniuses, ppd maintain his prudence when it comes to money, being known as meticulously careful. It’s impressive to know that money didn’t change this player!
Number 1 Gamer In The world
1. Saahil “UNiVeRsE” Arora ($2,720,623.84)
It’s hard to not think of Saahil “UNiVeRsE” Arora when imagining the 15 highest paid professional gamers in the world. This American Dota 2 player has earnings which are rapidly approaching $3 million. Nonetheless, there is a reason for all that: this highly acclaimed admirable player blossomed into one of the most proficient offlaners in the entire Western scene.
Currently playing for Evil Geniuses, UNiVeRsE bounced around to several other teams for short periods of time and change of scenery, but always returned to Evil Geniuses. And there’s no better place to be, considering that Zai, SumaiL, and Fear are part of this distinguished team.
The life of a pro gamer is dependent on exceptional discipline and perseverance. The reality is that when you first start out, parents won’t take you seriously, fans won’t always back you up when you fail, and the real money always goes out to the top Nonetheless, having a career in eSports in much more than that –passion, team friendships and ongoing support is what has transformed gaming into a real sport, and a chance for players to follow a legitimate career into competitive gaming.