Do you want to earn big bucks playing games?
Sounds like a dream, right?
But it isn’t – nowadays, there are even sites that pay you to play online games.
But that’s not the only way. There are so many ways gamers can earn cash.
Compensation for playing varies too. It can range from near minimum wage to six figures annually. eSports athletes, for example, can earn hundreds of thousands while game testers are paid the minimum daily wage.
Quick Fact: According to the ESA (The Entertainment Software Association), the gaming industry pulled in a whopping $20.77 billion in 2012 from video games, hardware, and accessories. Yeah, gaming is that big!
Read on to learn how you can make money with those video games.
1. Get paid to test games
Big video games firms hire video game testers. The job is to basically test the games being developed and report whatever bug you encounter.
An alternative name for game-testing is “ play-testing”. This term has been romanticized in the past as people often think that game testing is an easy task. But it can be quite the opposite.
For starters, the pay is low. Video game testers are often paid a minimum salary.
Job security is another issue. Plus, not all games are enjoyable. Some testers need to play video games that are for kids. The job too can be monotonous and repetitive.
But, if you like video games, I don’t think any of that would matter.
If you’re interested, check out our post on video games testing jobs.
2. Farm gold & other items
Farming gold has been around for quite a number of years.
Have you played the multiplayer online RPG such as the World of Warcraft?
If yes, then you have seen those spammers’ advertisement of their gold prices within the game.
Selling items within games is nothing new. Try recalling Diablo 2. It had a certain system of black market selling style with players being allowed to sell their items to fellow players for cold cash.
Item selling in games even became more mainstream with Diablo 3 and its real money auction house. This was a turning point, as the virtual items and currency trading became embedded in the game.
Blizzard makes $1 from each sale or 15% for currency and commodities, and additional 15% when you use PayPal. So you see, virtual selling was more than allowed, it was promoted.
3. Participate in eSport tournaments (and win)
Competition brings big bucks. This is how very skilled players make so much money. Playing professional level video game competitions are often called as “eSports”.
We’ are not talking about coins here, we’re talking of large cash winnings…
The team that won at Valve’s 2011 DOTA 2 tournament went home with one million dollars, $100,000 was given to the winner of the 2011 North American Star League Starcraft 2 tournament while the winner of last US Monopoly National Championship took home $20,580.
Of course, only a number of players receive big cash payouts at competitions. Just like in any tournaments, those professional video gamers who win are those have the talent and the dedication.
Finding corporations to sponsor you as a professional gamer is another way of earning cash in tournaments. Nike and Nascar, for example, are heavily into corporate branding and have sponsored some professional gamers.
In the past, even the likes of Intel, Western Digital, and SteelSeries, a developer of gaming peripherals have also ventured into corporate sponsorship of gamers.
4. Record Let’s Play videos
Now, this is where YouTube becomes useful for gamers who want to earn for playing.
Are you the type to play plenty of games?
If so, you can earn money streaming video games. It’s known as “Let’s Play” on YouTube and tons of gamers are making good money doing it.
Of course, you have to talk throughout the game, explain what and why you’re doing something, basically, narrate your gameplay.
Not surprisingly, there is a lot of competition out there, so you have to stand out.
You also need to be realistic about the earning potential. You see, the way you make money here is by enabling ads. These in-video ads earn you money for every click and impression. And that means the more people watch your videos, the more you’ll make. So in the beginning, you won’t make much (if anything at all). You have to slowly build your viewership. But once you do, it’ll be worth it.
The best part about this whole experience is that it becomes a form of passive income. Once you put the video up, you’re done. The video will stay up, earning you money, for as long as the video is up.
5. Share your expertise
If you’re an expert, you could get paid to teach.
Believe it or not, there are people who are willing to give some cash for what you know about games.
You can, for example, turn your knowledge of a certain video game to an eBook and self-publish it on Kindle. You could create an eBook where you share cheats, how to beat certain levels, how to get the best of a game, etc.
Need some inspirations? Check out this Amazon best sellers list, all related to video games.
6. Write about games
Have you seen those video game websites full of advertisements?
There are tons of game related websites out there that consistently have to pump out new content. They employ hundreds of thousands of full-time, part-time, and freelance writer.
If you have a flair for words and a decent amount of knowledge on gaming, then you may want to try to get hired as a writer for these sites.
Here are a few sites that pay game writers:
If you like playing games, these are some awesome opportunities for you to not only do something you enjoy but also get paid for doing it.
That said, you have to be realistic about it. A lot of these opportunities should be looked at as ways to make money on the side. They won’t replace your day job. Sure, there are people who make their living writing about games, but for the majority of us, it’s just a great way to make a little extra cash in our free time.