Becoming a pro gamer is the dream of many gamer around the world. Gaming all day, hang out on Twitch, always get the latest equipment sent to you and still earn a lot of money, sounds like a dream, right?
The community imagines the life of e-athletes like this or something similar. But when do you actually become a pro gamer? How do you become one? And how do you really get better?
We would like to answer all these questions for you with this article, so that you too can soon go hunting for prize money and fame with a sponsor behind you.
Who is a Pro-gamer?
A pro gamer is every gamer who mainly earns his living with gaming or who plays at a very high level. It doesn't matter whether it's through sponsors or prize money, your income is mainly based on playing computer games or if you blow the entire ESL on the wall, others will call you a pro-gamer.
What does an esports player do all day?
Anyone who wants to become an e-sportsperson often thinks that professional gamers simply game all day, and that is what they get paid for. In most cases, however, it is not that simple.
The classic e-sportsperson is mainly trains with their team or plays so-called scrims against other teams. With a bit of luck, you will also encounter it on normal servers in everyday life, but in order to maintain a high level, you have to train a lot.
What we as a community mainly see, namely the exciting duels in the big eSports leagues and tournaments, often only makes up a small part of the everyday life of eSports players. But one by one…
Becoming a pro gamer means more than just playing for fun
How do you become an eSports player?
In most cases it's mainly because you're really, really good at a game. Whether as a mid laner in League of Legends or as a support in CS:GO, if you only play a good round every now and then, there is a high probability that you will not become a pro gamer.
So it's incredibly important that you keep getting better and keep working on yourself if you want to become an esports player. You can compare a professional gamer with the career of a professional athlete. While there are some exceptional talents, like in football or basketball, who have to do less than the rest, most players have to work on themselves every day to be able to keep up with the competition. But how do you get better?
Focus on one game
An important foundation for success in pro gaming is committing to a game. There are always pro gamers who are so talented that they can be successful in several games (e.g. Fatal1ty or Gamsu). These players are absolute exceptions!
The majority of pro gamers concentrate on a single game, at least when it comes to participating in tournaments and leagues. While it's common throughout your career to switch to a different game within the genre, you should concentrate on one game in the beginning.
Find your settings
If you want to become a pro gamer, you absolutely have to deal with the topic of settings. In pro gaming, fractions of a second count, quick reactions, good communication and long-lasting concentration. So if you change your mouse sensitivity every day, try to use every high-end graphics setting and don't understand your team because of all the sound effects, you're doing yourself a disservice.
Research what to look for in your game, test different settings, and then stick with them. This is the only way you can automate the decisive movement sequences in the medium term and really get better. The use of permitted scripts such as the Jumpthrow Bind in CS:GO can help you a little here, but the decisive sensitivity only comes after days and weeks with the same settings.
You cannot be successful in any sport without regular and planned training. Of course, this also applies to esports players. If you think that grinding the Battlepass or the evening sessions with friends count as regular training, we have to disappoint you.
It's absolutely no problem to make the servers unsafe from time to time with your smurf account and good friends. However, you should work on your weaknesses regularly and in a structured manner and train individual movement sequences/mechanics.
Only if you take things like aim training and scrims seriously you will have a realistic chance of success as a professional gamer.
The best way to become a pro gamer is with a team.
Join a team
You grow with your tasks. This saying is definitely relevant in the life of a pro gamer as well. If you join a team that consists mostly of significantly better players, you will also get better and better over time. You'll quickly learn what really good players pay attention to, how they move, what their priorities are and how they deal with stressful situations. All of this is invaluable for your development.
Another important factor is of course that most of the very successful games in e-sports are team-based games. If you think you can make it to the highest echelons of Counter Strike without a permanent team, you're on the wrong track. Only true team players make it into the hallowed halls of esports with talent, hard work and a bit of luck.
Work on your mindset
What has long worked in poker, business or professional sports still has a niche existence in pro gaming as well. Working on mindset, frustration limit and stamina are important prerequisites for top performance.
If you tend to rage quit after every unfortunate goal or frag and throw your controller against the wall, you will never unpack the all-important clutch play and lead your team to a title.
What is completely normal in professional sports can also help you to the next level. Recording your own videos is not only suitable for YouTube content or flexing on Reddit, but also for targeted further development as an esports player.
Look at the recordings with specific questions. Where was the opponent? What could you have done better? How can you work on it? With such questions you usually recognize patterns very quickly and can develop yourself in a much more targeted and faster way.
Watch pro gamers
Every eSportsperson has their own style, solves problems in their own way, or has special tactics to deal with a situation. How does player X behave in the early rounds? Which way does s/he take to A? How does s/he play with weapon XY? These are all exciting questions that can help you develop into a successful e-sportsperson.
Think of it as some sort of esports education. So make yourself comfortable, grab a snack and get your notepad ready. Because only those who observe the best players closely can learn from them and become the new e-sports star.
Play in tournaments and leagues
This is a known fact, that those who win tournaments and dominate leagues make a name for themselves. This is no different in e-sports. If you want to become a pro gamer, you aim to beat the competition in the biggest tournaments and leagues. From the start, make sure your name appears regularly on the leaderboards and podiums. No matter how small the tournament or league, test yourself and your skills against the competition as often as possible. This is the only way you can really develop in pro gaming and slowly make a name for yourself in the scene.
Find a coach or mentor
There are now coaches for all popular e-sports games who look over your shoulder for money. What may sound a bit strange at first can be a really good investment in the long run.
Coaches who may have already followed your planned path, or who play at a very high level, often bring a breath of fresh air and new perspectives to your game.
Why don't you throw the needle there or go that way? Why don't you concentrate a bit more on this or that in the initial phase? Such questions can be extremely helpful and take you to the next level in the medium term.
Work on your communication
Communication is everything in pro gaming. Anyone who has ever watched a match played by a professional team will quickly notice that the chatter is constantly high.
Where is which opponent right now? Who is approaching a streak or holding an important spot? These and other questions are answered continuously by the team in one round.
Those who are then able to process all this information and combine it with map awareness and their skills, have an upper hand and a decisive advantage in many situations.
It's your turn
We hope you now have all the important answers to the question "How to become an esports player?". As you can see, it's a long way and a lot of work. No one becomes the new esports phenomenon overnight.
Of course we keep our fingers crossed for you and look forward to your highlights and decisive plays from the big leagues and tournaments in the world. What are you waiting for? If you really want to become a pro gamer, get to work and show the scene that they have to reckon with you!