Do you love playing computer games? Did you know that you can monetize your gaming habit? Yes, you heard that well. Millions of gamers are making money with computer games out there. eSports professional players like Johan Sundstein are worth $6.9 million currently. With the gaming industry expected to reach $300 billion by 2025, you can get a slice of that pie if you know how to make money on computer games. The good news is that unlike other side hustles or side jobs, there is more fun in computer games.
Note that while you can monetize your gaming habit, it’s not as easy as you might think. You have to put in the time, hard work, and effort to start making a living playing video games. In this ultimate guide, we put together a list of 5 ways on how to make money on computer games to answer the following questions:
- How do I become a paid gamer?
- What games give you real money?
- Is gaming the best way to make money?
- Can you make a living as a gamer?
You don’t have to be a professional gamer to make money on computer games. You can learn the ropes and become a top earner in the gaming industry.
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Ready to learn how to make money through computer games? Alright, let’s dive in.
How Much Money Can You Make on Computer Games?
Undoubtedly, gaming is a thriving billion-dollar industry. However, how much money you can make depends on the occupation you choose. You can make tens of thousands of dollars as an eSports professional but earn a few dollars or less as a video game journalist.
For instance, according to Ziprecruiter, a video game journalist may earn between $24 and $60 per hour on average. You can expect to make more than this depending on your experience.
That said, let’s see:
How to Make Money on Computer Games
Disclaimer: Not all the ways on how to make money on computer games in this list are suitable for everyone. Choose your suitable method and work towards achieving your dreams.
1. Become a Quality Assurance Tester
Computer games are founded from multiple lines of code. Game developers work tirelessly creating and experimenting with multiple lines of codes to build a game suitable for different users with different preferences.
Before the game is sent out to the public, video game companies rely on input from independent users not involved in the game development process to explore the game before it reaches the final version to provide feedback about it.
What a QA tester does
As a quality assurance tester, you will be required to do the following:
- Try the game through different levels, modes, designs, etc.
- Provide feedback in case you encounter glitches, errors, or bugs.
- Provide feedback about your experience while trying the game.
- Try messing up with the game to see where users could experience difficulties when playing it.
- Play the game severally until there are no more errors, glitches, or bugs.
In the end, you will be required to provide feedback on what’s working or not working and where the development team needs to work. When you encounter no glitches, errors, or bugs when playing the game then the final version of the game is ready for launch.
Assurance testers are useful during the game development process since glitches and mistakes are inevitable in the beta-testing phase. If these issues aren’t solved, users will experience challenges when the game is launched.
Many computer games companies hire testers on a contract basis. As a QA tester, you can make between $10 and $58 per hour or even more. Your pay depends on multiple factors like your experience, the platforms you play the game on, etc.
If you’re looking for computer games QA testing jobs, keep an eye on job boards like FlexJobs, Indeed, Player Research, and more.
Note: Becoming a QA tester is easy. However, the job can be boring since you’re required to break games intentionally; and sometimes you will have to test the same place after each revision. Think about if the game has to go through twenty or more rounds of revisions. Of course, the salary is also not great unless you work with a large game development company with a lot of game testing opportunities.
2. Make Money Online as a Game Live-Streamer
Ever heard of PewDiePie? He’s a professional entertainer and live-streamer with an estimated net worth of $35-55 million as of 2021. This guy is one of the highest-paid YouTubers who make money as a liver streamer.
The good news is that this method of making money on computer games has a low barrier to entry. Of course, you will not start making money the very first day you start. You have to accumulate a huge audience first.
Another good thing is that anyone can make money live-streaming as long as you build a large and loyal audience. There are many platforms for streaming such as Twitch, YouTube, and more.
Let’s see how to make money on computer games as a live-streamer.
Twitch is a live streaming video platform that was launched back in 2011 but was later acquired by Amazon in 2014. It’s one of the go-to places for new streamers. The platform pays streamers around $3 per 1,000 ad views, $5 per month per subscriber. You can also use sponsorships like Amazon referral links and PayPal to generate more money and build a large audience.
The good news with Twitch is that, unlike YouTube, you can stream video games playing on this platform.
To benefit a lot from this platform, expert streamers recommend focusing on a particular game, narrowing focus on a specific fan base and channel, and maintaining consistency and a reliable schedule.
Also, you’d want to have a partner you can interact with while streaming a game. Interact with your fans when your channel starts to attract their attention.
How Much Money Do Twitch Streamers Make?
How much money you can make on Twitch depends on certain factors such as your ability to build a larger community as well as your popularity.
Top streamers make between $3k and $5k per month streaming video games 40 hours per week. On average, Twitch streamers earn approximately $250 in ad revenue per 100 subscribers or $3.5 per 1,000 views.
You can also use this Twitch Money Calculator to know how much money you can make on the platform.
xQcOW and Pokimane are the highest-paid Twitch streamers in the world according to a recent Saving Spot report.
How to Make Money on Twitch
You can make money on Twitch through any or a combination of the following methods:
- Affiliate Links
- Tournament Winnings
Do you have a huge following on Facebook? If so then you can take advantage of the Facebook Gaming hub.
How To Make Money From Facebook Gaming
There is still not enough information about the highest-paid streamers on Facebook Gaming. Helms World is one of the expert streamers and gaming video creators on Facebook who says he makes a decent earning from Facebook Gaming.
As a streamer on Facebook, you can make money through the following methods:
- Stars (Facebook’s virtual currency. In this case, viewers purchase Stars then send them to you. You need to register with the company’s Level Up Program to earn Stars and Subscriptions.
Do you have a successful YouTube Channel? If so then you can make money as a Streamer.
How to Make Money Streaming on YouTube
The barrier to entry as a YouTube streamer is low. However, making money streaming on YouTube isn’t as easy as on Twitch and Facebook Gaming.
First, you need to join the YouTube Partner Program. This requires you to have at least 1k subscribers and your channel must have had 4000 watch time within the past 12 months.
As a streamer on YouTube, you can make money through the following methods:
- Selling merchandise.
- Affiliate links.
3. Become an eSports Professional
The history of eSports dates back to 1972. The total revenue generated by eSports is projected to hit $1.8 billion by 2022. Why not claim your piece of cake in this ever-growing platform and start making money on computer games? Are you a talented gamer? If so, go join an eSport team and play tournaments hosted worldwide. Expert eSport players make around $1k to $5k per month which is a decent earning.
The good news is that eSports is growing rapidly and has tournaments hosted for games such as League of Legends, Starcraft, Fortnite, and more. To join an eSport team to play a tournament, you need a YouTube channel with a huge following. Expert eSports players recommend other players to specialize in certain games like Call of Duty, Fortnite, etc. The good news about being an eSports professional is that you don’t need to be a pro gamer to find employment opportunities in the eSports sector.
You can get jobs such as:
- Tournament referee.
- Marketing and selling eSports events.
- Commenting during eSports tournaments.
- And more.
4. Become a Video Game Journalist
Can you write about the latest trends in the gaming industry and are a talented reporter. If so then you can make money through video game journalism. As a video game journalist, you will be reporting and discussing video games. In other words, video game journalism entails focusing on events around the video game industry and involves reporting about new jobs being launched and more.
The highest-paid video journalists earn around $26,000 per year so generally, it’s somehow a low-paying job compared to other jobs in the computer games industry. Still, video game journalism can be a great side hustle. To become a video game journalist, you need to pursue a degree in journalism as well as some working experience in the sector.
You also need to be a passionate gamer as well. You can also take some paid internships to get some experience before you jump on the bandwagon. You can also decide to do video game journalism full-time or on a freelance basis.
Get Paid for Playing Computer Games Directly
While this sounds interesting (how can someone pay you for just playing their games?) there are many sites you can join and get paid to play their video games. Most of these sites pay you using electronic cash or cryptocurrency such as tokens that you can convert into gift cards.
When you play computer games, these sites depend on the feedback you leave on the particular games to improve. Mistplay, is an Android application that lets you monetize playing computer games. In this app, you get the opportunity to participate in games then you’re paid using prizes. You also start receiving your prizes immediately after you start playing the video games.
5. Become a Video Game Content Creator
Do you have a knack for writing? Can you teach a newbie how to video games? If so then you can become a video game content writer and start writing game guides and tutorials. You can create your own website and start sharing video guides or upload video game guides to your YouTube channel. You can then earn money through your streaming or YouTube channel through AdSense.
You can then monetize your content with ads or donations. You can also create eBooks about video games and sell them to aspiring gamers. Making money as a video game content creator is no easy task though. You need to create interesting content around popular games. Unfortunately, there is a lot of content around popular games out there. For this reason, you need to produce in-depth, informative, and entertaining guides and tutorials than what the competition is providing. This requires a lot of research. You also need to have excellent writing skills. If you choose to make money on computer games creating eBooks, you need to format your content.
To get started, you need to identify popular and interesting computer games that people are having challenges with. Learn more about these games, the challenges players are facing then come up with the solutions.
As of 2019, the top video game content writers were earning around $17 million.
There are many ways on how to make money on computer games. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Apart from the five methods above, you can also become a video game coach, developer, etc.
The list can be as long as the opportunities are but as stated above, you need to identify your suitable occupation and start working towards actualizing your dreams.
Sherri Carrier is a professional gamer and journalist with over 10 years of experience. She currently works with Ninjaessay, a professional essay writing service provider in the UK.