As coverage of eSports continues to grow and as the tournaments gain more attention, the amount of money involved, and potential earnings also continues to rise.
The competitive scene can be considered profitable for strong players over a range of games, but certain games stand out above the rest when it comes to single tournament prize pools.
The Biggest Esports Prize Pools
The annual Dota 2 world championships, known as “The International” or “TI”, are arguably the most established competitive tournaments within eSports.
The ti10 prize money looks set to break the record for the largest eSports prize pool in history, with the total amount now having passed $38 million. This isn’t the first time the international has broken the prize pool record, with the tournament surpassing its prize pool total for the past seven years (2013 onwards).
Dota 2 has had by far the most lucrative prize pools out of all eSports tournaments that have been held, and the money on offer in the Dota 2 championships is life-changing for the players who are able to win it.
After seeing its popularity soar since its initial 2017 release, Fortnite has also established itself on the competitive scene with tournaments offering some serious financial rewards. The two main events at the Fortnite World Cup Finals 2019 had a combined prize pool of just over $30 million. The prize pool was split with $15.1 million in the Fortnite Duos and just over $15.2 million in the Solo’s total.
The 2019 Fortnite World Cup Finals is a sign of progression for Fortnite’s competitive game. Held at the Arthur Ashe Stadium, and having an eight-figure total prize pool highlights the significance of the occasion. Fortnite has held previous tournaments with seven-figure prize pools, however, the 2019 World Cup Finals has been the only event to challenge that of Dota 2’s The International.
League of Legends
League of Legends is considered one of the most influential of eSports, and with over 2400 recognized competitive tournaments being previously held, it’s no surprise that the game finds itself with some of the biggest prize pools on the competitive scene. The game’s single biggest prize pool to date is the LoL 2018 World Championship which had a total prize pool of over $6.4 million.
An internationally popular game, League of Legends World Championships have had teams and players from across the globe competing against each other since the first iterations of the event that were held back in 2011. The 2019 LoL World Championship won the award for ‘Best eSports Game’ and ‘Best eSports Event’ at The Game Awards 2019, showcasing how the game and its competitive events continue to stand out and grow in popularity.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
The Call of Duty League Championship 2020 was a big hit for the Call of Duty franchise and had a prize pool of $4.6 million – the biggest of any Call of Duty eSports tournament in history. With $1.5 million headings to the team that finished in the first place, it was the largest Call of Duty prize pool since the 2016 XP Championships.
Is There Bigger Prize Pools to Come?
The likelihood is that as eSports and the competitive scene continues to grow, there may well be even bigger and more lucrative prize pools to come. With the release of next-generation consoles around the corner as well, it is likely that interest in eSports and competitive gaming will rise and the prizes will be even more high-paying.