Can you make money from online games?

by Mike on May 2, 2014

Can you make money from online games?

In one of my earlier posts I talked about gaming (something I am quite passionate about) and whether Gamers can save money or is it nothing but a sink hole into which we pour our available finances (that’s how I felt about it anyway).  To follow on from this today I have to admit something. Yes I am addicted to watching Twitch.tv and in particular to the streams of one of my favorite games. I am that crazy about watching other people play this game that it has replaced my TV time when I am in bed falling asleep. Yes I like watching it that much!

Whats interesting from a financial point of view is some of these players have taken up game streaming for people to watch as full time employment! Yes somehow they have replaced their day job with playing games (something their passionate about) . Now not all the gamers earn the same amount and some of them are in startup mode but all their profile descriptions talk about wanting to do this full time finances allowing. How is that for a dream job?

So can you make money streaming online?

All of these streamers on Twitch.tv seem to have subscription buttons (once their at a certain viewer level) along with encouraging PayPal donations in the form of sponsorship. After spending sometime looking at some of the more highly viewed gamers I was really surprised to find many donations are often several hundreds of dollars and that in some cases I can see donations up two and three thousand dollars! To be exact I counted donations to one gamer totaling approximately $18,000. That’s not a bad income to stay home and play games and if you add in hardware sponsors (for a gamer with that kind of audience) its closer to $25,000. If you read my first article about gaming the biggest cost is in ongoing hardware upgrades. These game streamers are literally being given the hardware!

So how would you like 1 cent every time someone looked at you? Gamers making money

In addition to sponsors the whole setup on Twitch.tv and their game streaming is to serve ads to us the viewers. Every time we login to watch someone play a game or you hop streams from one gamer to another you see a video ad. Now I dont believe the advertising is particularly relevant to you as an individual (or twitch seems to think I am an alcoholic) but every time this ad is shown the gamer receives a small percentage of the advertising fee. If this is only 1 cent those numbers start to add up when you have several thousand people watching your stream or coming and going over the course of the period your gaming online.

So whats your passion and can it give additional income

Now I understand completely just like with jobs in life certain gamers earn more than others. The variables can be who and how they present themselves, how interactive they are with their audience and even what game they play. But isn’t this just like in real life? Certain jobs pay more depending on who you are and how you act. But cant we all apply this to all our hobbies?

  • Can your passion for reading allow you to do some side work (or a “Side Hustle” as some other financial bloggers call it) proof reading documents for someone.
  • Can your passion for writing allow you to sell some article writing online.
  • Can your woodworking be something your able to sell at the market on weekends.

Its only once we start to think creatively can we start to look at opportunities to make additional income which can add up in the long run.

 

What hobbies do you have? Know someone making money on the side from their passion? Leave us a comment and dont forget sharing is caring!

 

***Photo thanks to Wolferey & commons.wikimedia.org***

 

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Andy@artofbeingcheap May 4, 2014 at 11:47 am

Interesting stuff. Another way people can make money on games is by creating really great characters in massive multi player online games such as world of warcraft and then selling the character accounts. I had a friend who played a particular game for years and when he gave it up he was able to sell his account for $10,000. Of course he told me he had put so much time into it that the $10,000 amounted to making less than minimum wage.

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Mike May 8, 2014 at 9:35 pm

Hi Andy thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment. Being an ex wow player I hear you about selling those accounts/characters. Completely illegal of course as the games companies dont want money being traded other than into their pockets. And with the return on investment compared to time committed not sure I would want to make a full time job of it!

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Evan @ The Smaller Dollar May 20, 2014 at 11:50 pm

Very cool article, I always wondered whaty was going on with those streaming gaming sites. I had heard of contracts for MLG gamers but if they can get money while they practice by streaming that’s pretty incredible.

Reply

Mike May 25, 2014 at 12:17 pm

Its somewhat my dream Evan. Id love to play games all the time and get paid for it!

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