How To Make Money Playing Games: 7 Ways
Rikki Justin Go
October 31, 2022
Making money playing games may seem like a dream come true, but it is a reality for many. There are several ways to make money playing games and we will explore all 6 of them in this article. Whether you are a professional gamer or just someone who enjoys playing games for fun, there is a way for you to make money doing what you love. So, if you are ready to learn how to make money playing games, read on!
There are a lot of different ways to make money playing video games. Some people do it by streaming themselves playing games on sites like Twitch, while others compete in professional tournaments. Here are 5 different ways you can make money playing video games.
1. Sell Games
Since you’re already into playing games, why not try selling them for a living? It’s not that difficult. We will give you examples of how you can make money off games you own and some you know you can sell.
Online Game Store
Sites like poggers.com originated from the love of video games that turned into a successful, online video game store business.
Sell Used Games
Tired of games collecting dust? Do you play only one game out of the hundreds that you own? There’s a solution to turn that into cash by going into sites where you can buy or sell used games. Sites like declutter allow you the freedom to make money out of games you’ve already enjoyed in the past but no longer find useful.
There are different ways to make money in becoming an Esports Pro. However, this is probably the most difficult but rewarding path which will provide an unlimited source of income streams. Here are ways you can make money online playing games through this route. Here are a couple of ways you make a lot of money by becoming an Esports Pro:
The world of professional Esports is a very lucrative one. Boasting an audience in the hundreds of millions overall, advertisers for all kinds of products related to gaming and its fans will offer product or company sponsorship to the best or most popular players. Product endorsements can be for both teams and individuals, depending on a player’s standing.
Esports professional players’ salary depends on a whole range of factors like what game, team, or skill/popularity level a player is at. It all boils down to how much coverage and influence a player has on a certain game, and how widespread the game’s popularity is. More popularly followed games will usually pay more so keep that in mind.
Tournament Prize Money
Esports Tournaments have ranging amounts of prize money. Naturally, a tournament’s prize money is congruent to how mainstream and popular the game is. It would be good to choose a game to play according to popularity, then select the game you think you have a great chance to be exceptional at.
3. Live Streaming
Live streaming is probably the easiest way to make money playing games. That doesn’t mean that it doesn’t entail a lot of hard work, you will still have to give viewers a reason why they should follow or subscribe to your streams regularly.
Affiliate Product Promotion, Ad Placements, Donations, and Subscriptions are some of the ways you can make money through your live streaming channel. Twitch even has bits, a form of Twitch currency that followers can use to purchase special emotes or cheers to set them apart from non-paying viewers. Loyal fans play a vital part in the monetization success of a streaming channel.
Self-promotion can be quite difficult and getting in front of a camera and doing commentary does take a bit of getting used to. Here are the monetization options available if you stream to make money playing games online:
Coaching is a bit similar to becoming an Esports Pro in the sense that will have to be very exceptionally skilled for people to pay you. The only difference is that the qualifications in being a coach vary, as not anyone can afford coaching from actual pros since their rates would be too expensive. Semi-pros and above-average players do offer coaching at more affordable rates than Esports pros.
How To Play Videos
How To Play videos are tutorial videos that don’t require you to be an expert. It just requires one to have tips and tricks for the game that help viewers go over a level they’re stuck on. It applies to beginners or players frustrated with the game. These are usually Role Playing Games or Adventure games, but at times do involve some competitive Esports games. Generally, it’s just a way to help viewers enjoy the game more in whatever capacity.
Becoming an influencer sounds easier than it is. Like with other forms of social media, game streaming platforms also have their own sets of influencers. Some people are just born with charisma and personality, which is a huge edge. If you’re not one of those people, you can still qualify by either being attractive, funny, or simply informative about the game. It takes time to build an audience for most people, but it helps if you are persistent and just put in the work to engage your audience while playing the game.
Doing game reviews and commentary on games you play can be a way for you to make money playing games. People look to reviews on games to see if they’re worth purchasing so there is a strong demand for game review channels. A good advantage a game review channel has is that once your audience trusts you, you can leave links to affiliate products and get a commission for every purchase. It’s a great way to make money playing games as you make good use of something you enjoy doing - playing games.
4. Host A Gaming Podcast
Podcasting is similar but also slightly different from live streaming games. Podcasting has grown over the years and is a great way to zone out during commutes or just a great way to pass the time. You don’t have to be an Esports pro or some famous person to build a successful podcast. All you need is a burning passion for the game and attention to detail when doing commentary or having guests on. Being a good communicator is key to success.
Gamers enjoy a talk show guest format. It’s a great way to build a following without even being good at a game. Monetization options are similar to live streaming. Ad revenue, sponsorships, Patreon donations, and merchandise sales are options available.
Be A Gaming Journalist
Becoming a gaming journalist is difficult and to get a following you have to set up your profile as such and not be shy about it. Self-promotion requires a lot of confidence and persistence but in the age of the internet, one can just create profiles for every social media platform that is relevant to gaming to promote yourself. Microblogging sites like Twitter, Quora, and Medium, are good starting points. Eventually, gaming fans will recognize your name on multiple gaming platforms and there’s a good chance some will start following you.
5. In-Game Transactions
Some games directly or indirectly involve real money you can earn while playing them. Players all over the world pay for skins and items all the time. Depending on how the game’s trading system work, several games allow players to make real money. Here are some of them:
You’d be surprised how many MMO (Massive Multiplayer Games) players buy player accounts just to skip over the part where they have to grind out hours and hours to level up their characters in the game. It’s existed since MMOs grew in popularity and has been a
grey market in the video game industry. Trade Items
Some games have ways to buy and sell in-game items for real money, either directly or indirectly. Back in the day, it was easier as in the case of World of Warcraft’s gold currency but was revamped by Blizzard due to abuse from some groups. Some games still give players ways to make money by selling or trading items in auction houses within the game or secondary markets.
Play For Real Money
Games like Mistplay, Skillz, and the like involve real money simply by grinding away by playing their games to catch bonuses and redeem tickets which you then can convert into real money. There are tons and tons of games similar to the examples above, and you can find them on almost all platforms of games (android, browser,pc). These aren’t as profitable as the other options in this article, because the scaling options for revenue aren’t that viable.
Some games like Second Life are sandbox games that simulate the real world and give users their online avatars. You can live vicariously and do whatever you want without consequence and some people do business in the Second Life universe and make real money. Second Life even had its first real-world millionaire just by doing business in the game’s virtual world.
Blogging is not playing games but you get to write about your favorite games by creating your website and writing articles. Similar to streaming, blogging can be profitable if you have enough users who follow your written content online. Just like streaming, if enough people trust what entertainment or information you provide, they will visit your blog and create traffic. Here are some options for blogging revenue:
Companies like Ezoic, Adsense, and Mediavine will place ads on your blog and pay for impressions or clicks on ads. The more visitors your blog has, the more ad payments you’ll be able to collect. It’s simple enough and a passive way to make money. Ad revenue is a numbers game, and scaling the traffic visiting your site will only increase the chances someone clicks on one of them. Someone clicking on an ad, more so someone purchasing through an ad means a higher % commission so keep that in mind.
Just like Ad revenue, affiliate marketing networks are similar. Traffic dictates how much potential revenue you’ll be receiving with one caveat - they have to purchase the product links which are placed within your article. There are plenty of Affiliate Network programs that are large enough to cover all niches. The Amazon Affiliate Program is the most popular, but there are lots of other lesser-known ones that can give better % commissions on each purchase.
Donations are fan-funded endeavors that usually give out donations to show appreciation of your content. Sites like Patreon, Paypal, and Buy Me A Coffee are some of the more popular donation options. If you deliver quality, informative, and useful content, there’s no reason why the donation income stream won’t generate added funds.
7. Tech Jobs
Going the Tech route is somewhat different from playing games but it’s kind of similar if you’re really into gaming. You can also be involved in the game creation process without really helping out in the coding aspect of development. In this section, we’ll briefly list how you can make money playing games by going the tech route:
Learning programming allows one to create games. It’s easier said than done, but with the newer languages like Python, beginners have a shorter learning curve since a lot of automation is involved. Older languages can be cumbersome since a lot of code has to be built from the ground up. Creating Mobile Game apps is another option since it’s easier to create and sell as mobile game apps.
Quality assurance teams have similar roles to Beta Testers but are independent of the Beta Testing phase of game development. Their main job is to play games to find bugs and glitches so devs can address them and put out a more polished product to market. Think of QA teams as the first line of defense, when all the bugs and glitches are addressed, the Beta Testers come in to play the games in their entirety.
You can also make money playing games without participating in game creation, but you’ll work closely with its developers as a beta tester. Beta testing requires that you play the games and see if everything works as intended. It won’t be as fun because you can’t pick the games to play. Sites like beta testing are one of the places you go to see how you can be a beta tester.
Making money playing video games has never been so widely accessible. With the internet and all the platforms available, there’s simply no excuse why you can’t make money playing games if one is seriously considering turning it into a side hustle. But ask yourself if you want to commit to making money playing games because it will require some hard work.
One can make money not only by playing games, but also by participating in events and topics related to the scene e.g. writing, blogging, and reviewing. Popular subgenres like Anime, MMO, or shooter-based games have built-in hardcore audiences. Just search for them on social media sites like Reddit, Quora, and Facebook to let people know who you are.
That’s all there is to it. We might’ve missed a couple of opportunities to make money playing games, but we’ll keep updating this article once we find more secret tips to get paid while enjoying your favorite games!