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20 Professional Video Gamers That Make Enough Money To Infuriate You

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Who’s ready for their weekly moment of confusion that’s so intense, it can only be met with anger? I’m not even sure where to begin. So last week, Amazon bought Twitch, which is a company that live streams people playing video games to…well I assume other people who like watching people play video games. And I guess that company is worth a billion dollars. That was the beginning. So I start digging a little deeper. Turns out there’s a whole, massive community known as “e-sports.” I know. Apparently everything from first-person shooters to online strategy games are considered a part of “e-sports.”

Look, I’m not one to propagate the nerds vs. jocks stereotype. I play video games. A lot of my friends play video games. Hell, a couple of my friends went to E3 last year. So, it’s not like we’re a bunch of football lettermen in the ’80s giving swirlies to any kid who ever slid a quarter into a Missile Command machine. I get the attraction. But sports? Come on. Poker’s not a sport. Golf is barely a sport. Video game competitions are sure as fuck not sporting events.

But I digress. Here’s where it gets even more ridiculous. Go check out what these guys are making. The dude ranked 100th in the world made $178,000 last year. Sure, that ain’t Kevin Durant Under Armour money, but holy fucking shit. Scroll all the way up, and every guy in the top 5 is clearing over a million dollars. Playing video games. So what, like Call of Duty? Six guys on the list. Halo? Three. What the fuck games are they playing? Well first there’s Starcraft, which I never got into, and I honestly thought hadn’t produced a new game since like 1998. But the overwhelming majority of these players are making bank playing Dota 2. What? What the fuck is Dota 2? I had to look it up. Some kind of multiplayer fantasy battle game. It sounds like Call of Duty had sex with Warcraft, and then got trapped in Age of Empires. I’d actually play the hell out of that game.

Here’s the list of the 20 highest paid gamers in the world:

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Anyway, to sum it all up, guys with names like Fatal1ty, Admiral Bulldog, and “Banana” are sitting in their weird, ergonomic nerd chairs, playing games that you’ve never heard of, with hundreds of thousands of people watching them live online, and they’re making MILLIONS of dollars doing it. I don’t even know what to do with that information.

[via E Sports Earnings]

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Randall J. Knox

Randall J. Knox (known colloquially to his friends as "Knox") left his native Texas a few years ago, and moved to Los Angeles in his '03 Buick Regal named LeRoi to write movies with his jackass college buddies. His favorite things in life include bourbon that's above his pay grade, mix CDs, and Kevin Costner films. He isn't sure what "dad jeans" are exactly, but he knows he wants a pair.

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