Esports is expanding quickly and is being watched by millions of people. Early on, eSports was mainly a local phenomenon, with fans traveling great distances to watch their favorite players compete.
Bookmakers are also increasingly broadening the range of esports markets they provide punters, with even revolutionary sites now offering CS:GO betting with crypto.
But as the esports sector gains popularity, organizers are beginning to create more professional-level competitions and leagues.
Major leagues and tournaments are widely available today on many platforms, and fans can watch matches live thanks to specialized streaming services. There is a sizable international scene as well, with competitors at events from all over the world.
Competing in these leagues are several players who have gone on to establish their name in the annals of the sports. Below are 10 of the best gamers that esports have produced.
The 36-year-old Dutch professional gamer Manuel Schenkhuizen, also known as Grubby, gained notoriety as one of the greatest and most well-known Warcraft 3 players of all time.
He won his first tournament in his native country at the age of 17, taking home €200.
He became the poster boy for 4Kings, one of the most recognizable esports teams of the middle of the 2000s, and won over 30 gold medals at important competitions, including six world championships.
Additionally, he received an all-time high of seven nominations for the Esports Awards.
Most notably, he broke through the nearly unbeatable Chinese and South Korean invincibility in strategy games.
At the 2009 BlizzCon video game convention, Grubby proposed to his wife Cassandra Ng, who is also an accomplished Warcraft 3 player. The well-known, loving, and photogenic couple has been affectionately dubbed the “Posh and Becks of the esports world.”
Although he is now retired, Jonathan Wendell, also known as Fatal1ty, began his career in 1999 when he was just 18 years old.
He is regarded as one of the all-time great first-person shooter players.
This might be the result of his early entry into the professional gaming industry or because he was superior, particularly in one-on-one situations.
His first game was Quake III Arena, and in his first competition, he finished third. He later experienced continuing success in Quake III Arena, Unreal Tournament 2003, and the Painkiller events.
He also experimented with Counter-Strike and Call of Duty where he had success too. Throughout his career, he won 12 world championships.
When competing, Johan Sundstein goes by the alias N0tail. With interests majorly in Dota 2 arena, he is one of the highest-paid players in eSports history.
He rose to prominence after joining Fnatic, going on to play for other teams such as Cloud 9 and OG.
N0tail is renowned for his skills and tremendous prize money wins. His skill at Dota 2 helped him emerge victorious four times in the Dota Major in Boston, Manila, Frankfurt, and Kyiv).
In addition, he also became the International Champion in 2018 and 2019.
Jang Jae-ho, popularly called Moon, was particularly successful in South Korea. The Asian nation is frequently referred to as the “Mecca” of eSports.
Jang rose to fame since the early days of Warcraft 3, frequently defeating the best players he came across.
During his career, some of his achievements include 4 WCG champions, 2 PGL champions, 4 WEG champions, 9 MBC Game League champions, 2 IEF champions, 2 IEST champions, and 3 WC3L champions.
Beyond his accomplishments, Moon will be remembered for the landmark contract he signed in 2009. The Korean team WeMade FOX made him an offer for a $500,000 contract after he dominated the scene for over seven years.
Lee Sang Heok
Lee Sang Heok, popularly known as Faker has unquestionably established himself as the face of League of Legends after years of incredible performances and consistently excellent results.
He is largely regarded as the greatest player the game has ever seen, particularly in tournament settings.
His abilities as a solo-laner and a team player are well renowned, and he is capable of performing things that appear nearly superhuman.
Players who have faced off against Faker consistently talk about how uncomfortable and doubtful they feel about their own abilities.
Some highlights of his career include 2x MSI Champion, 1x NLB Champion, 2x MSI Champion, and 10x LCK Champion.
At the age of fourteen, Lee Young-ho, alias Flash, started playing Starcraft: Brood War professionally.
Interestingly, it didn’t take Lee long to become the most dominant player the game had ever seen. One year later, Flash won the championship, becoming a formidable competitor in the game.
Flash was known for having a very reliable style of play that allowed for enormous strategic versatility. He had win rates that occasionally even reached beyond 80% across all matchups.
His mastery earned him nicknames like “Final Boss” or “God”, having also obtained the highest Elo ratings for any player in Starcraft (2400s).
Flash became the WGC champion in 2010 and also the IEM champion in 2014.
Daigo has been involved in esports for two decades and has been present since the very beginning. He is regarded as a beast in the Street Fighter game.
He challenges players to the limit and acts as an example for his fellow gamers. He is also very reliable and gives his all during a gaming session.
Daigo has some of the most amazing moments in Street Fighter history, such as the EVO Moment 37, arguably the most well-known play in fighting game history.
During his playing time, Daigo won six EVO championships.
Oleksandr Olehovych, Kostyleiv
Although Counter-Strike has produced many prodigies over the years, very few of them come close to matching Oleksandr, popularly called S1mple.
The Ukrainian is an absurdly skilled marksman with a superior knowledge of the game than other top players.
S1mple had a reputation for having a short fuse and finding it difficult to get along with teammates in his early years. As a result, he briefly switched between squads before settling with Natus Vincere.
He really made a name for himself with NaVi, where he had the patience to strengthen the team’s assets while weeding out its flaws.
Among some accolades to his name are the HLTV MVP 20x and the IEM Season 3 Grand Slam Champion.
After Faker, Song Eui-Jin, also known as Rookie, is regarded as the best League of Legends player.
At the age of 16, this gifted esports athlete made his debut with the KT Rolster Arrows team. One year later, his team won the Champions Summer 2014 competition.
Rookie was moved to Invictus Gaming in 2014, where he made his first World Championship appearance.
In the group stages, his team was virtually unbeatable, and after many thrilling games, they took home the 2018 World Championship.
Rookie won the Rift Rivals 2018 and became the first player to win more than $100,000 in prize money.
Peter Rothmann Rasmussen
Peter Rothmann Rasmussen, also known as Dupreeh, is unquestionably one of Counter-Strike’s most talented and effective gamers.
Dupreeh has won a huge amount of money and innumerable events. The ESL Pro League’s seventh-season MVP award went to this gifted gamer. In addition, he came in fifth place among the top CS: GO players of 2018.
Dupreeh was ranked eighth on Thorin’s top ten list for 2018. He won the Blast Pro championship and was ranked 16th by HLTV in 2019.
Playing CS:GO has brought him over a million dollars. In addition, his team received a cash reward of $500,000 for winning the 2017 ELEAGUE Major Atlanta.
Tips on developing as a professional esports gamer
While we have gushed about the best esports players, we must remember that they excelled because they put in a lot of work into honing their craft.
Yes, they definitely were not born champions, but they steadily climbed the ladder to the top. So how can you then choose the best esports titles as a budding professional?
Discover Your Motive
It’s crucial to select an export game for the proper reasons. There are many good reasons to play, including the love of competition, the fulfillment of improving as a player, and the sense of giving back to a team and community.
Positive incentives ultimately maintain player interest. However, players driven by money, fame, and speedy success will probably burn out before they become professionals.
Join a Community
Professional gaming is as much about cultural factors as it is about individual talent. Spend some time observing players on forums and online communities before devoting too much time to understanding the ins and outs of a certain game.
You’ll be able to decide whether the pro-player journey fits with your own objectives and motives after having some experience, which will give you a better idea of the road ahead.
Pick the right gaming equipment
Make sure you are using the appropriate equipment, beginning with a reliable gaming mouse and mechanical keyboard.
If it comes to peripherals, there are many options available that range in size, form, and sensitivity. It is best to pick the option that works for you, though.