Remember the old days when playing video games existed as a solitary pastime? In this day and age, gaming means millions of people can watch you crush the competition during a live stream or huge companies can pay you big bucks in tournaments. Wondering if you should stick to being a streamer as a hobby or level up to a professional eSports player? Check out the pros and cons of each listed below.
Being a streamer:
Pro: You can do it whenever you have the time.
Streaming your gaming adventures is basically the perfect side hustle. You can log on whenever you have some free time and fit it in around other things in your schedule (like your main job or school). You have the freedom to play whatever games you want, and you get to decide how much time you devote to your gaming. There are also still ways to monetize your talent by getting donations from fans (so you don’t have to leave money on the table by not going pro). If you love gaming but don’t want it to take over your whole life, being a streamer is the way to go.
Con: You can get harassed pretty frequently.
The main downside to being a streamer is that you’ll probably experience quite a bit of harassment. Some people make it their mission to tear you down during your streams (even when you’re killing it). There are even incidences of some pretty extreme examples of stalking that can occur if one of your haters goes too far. So, you should only consider being a streamer if you have a thick skin and won’t get put off by some heckling.
Being a professional eSports player:
Pro: This can be your full-time gig.
If you’re ready to devote a huge chunk of your life to gaming, you might want to think about becoming a professional eSports player. These gamers get (often massive) sponsorships and are paid to stream their gaming or compete in tournaments for top prizes in the eSports world. If you have what it takes to go pro, you have to make sure you can be 100 percent committed to this world. This type of gig takes a ton of time so stick to being a streamer if you aren’t ready to eat, sleep, and breathe gaming 24/7.
Con: You can experience neck/wrist injuries.
Having a professional eSports career means you’re subject to physical injuries that go along with the job. For example, a lot of pro eSports players experience symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome (because of the repetitive motions of gaming), as well as neck, wrist, and elbow injuries that can be severe in some cases. Back pain is also a frequent complaint for pro gamers – you can end up sitting in one position for hours while you’re playing. If the idea of these types of injuries doesn’t scare you off, going pro might be an option for you.
You can see additional information about the eSports industry over at Evolution of eSports to help you make your decision about working as a streamer vs. a professional eSports player. Happy gaming!