Playing video games can be relaxing and fun, not to mention challenging, but people who spend lots of time gaming are often criticized for wasting time with pursuits that are purely for entertainment. After all, you can’t earn any money playing video games, people will say.
But that’s not exactly true.
The truth is that there are ways for avid gamers to turn their hobby into some extra money. While for most people it won’t be possible to make a living or become millionaires solely by playing video games, nearly anyone can make some extra money to cover expenses, save for major purchases or simply to fund their gaming hobby.
There are five main ways that you can earn money playing video games: video game blogs, video game guides, YouTube videos, games testing and e sports. Read on to learn more about each of these five ways that you can make a little money doing something that you love.
1. Become a Video Game Blogger
If you’re looking for a quick and simple way to begin to earn money online playing video games, making money with blogging is the answer. Many people today use the Internet to search for information and news about games, creating opportunities for video game players who like to write and are able to use simple blogging tools like WordPress.
WordPress is a free and open-source content management system, and we can highly recommend it. You can get started making your own blog by clicking on the image below, or if you’ve already done so, check out the WordPress themes Elementor and ElegantThemes to take your website to the next level!
You can approach video game blogging from a variety of angles. You may want to have a review site where you describe games, list their pros and cons and then provide rankings. You could create a site that includes video game news about upcoming releases and new technologies in the industry. Niche sites are also possibilities. Maybe you would like to write about a particular video game series that you love, about vintage or classic games or even about topics like the portrays of women in video games.
No matter what you plan to write about, you’ll want to make sure that the posts you produce are of good quality. You want to produce content that will appeal to readers and make your site the one that they want to visit over another. In addition to writing interesting and informative content, you want your gaming blog to be appealing to the eye and easy to navigate. You can use templates like the ones mentioned above to customize your site in very little time.
Once you start to write, you’ll need to promote your blog to make it a success. Having a blog and sharing articles on social is a smart strategy to make money. In fact, monetizing your Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, can boost your blog significantly. You can also post the article on gaming forums and work out arrangements with other bloggers to share one another’s work.
To make money with your video game blog, you’ll need to advertise with Google AdSense or Yahoo Publisher. These sites place ads on the website and pay you money when people click on links. You’ll want to make sure that whatever form of monetization you choose will provide targeted ads that are likely to appeal to readers. Otherwise, you won’t have much hope of making any money through clicks.
As you begin to build your site and increase traffic, you can get in touch with game publishers to see if they would like you to review their games. This can mean getting free copies of games so you don’t have to purchase them, which will end up saving you money.
2. Become a Game Guide Writer
If you love to play video games, you know how frustrating it can be when you reach a point in the game when you’re unable to continue because you can’t figure out what to do or can’t complete the right sequence of movements to advance. When that happens, you likely turn to the Internet and check out gaming guides.
While there are free resources available for gaming guides, paid guides are often the best options for those who want the best advice and information about games. Becoming the author of those guides can help you earn a decent income.
Killerguides.net is one of the leading sources for gaming guides related to MMO online games. Guides at this site are purchased as an e-book that is usually around 80 pages in length. Many of the guides sell for around $30 with writers receiving a portion of the money from each one sold in the form of royalties. When you publish an e-book on the site, you must continue to write updates to your guide for as long as the game exists in order to continue receiving royalties.
You can increase your earnings by promoting your guides using social media and video game forums
3. Publish YouTube Videos and Monetize Them
Game guides aren’t the only places that people find information that they need to get past difficult parts of video games. Many gamers would prefer to see tutorials and demonstration live on the screen and will come to YouTube to find them. By creating videos of the action on the screen while you’re playing games, uploading the videos to YouTube and monetizing them, you can make some decent money.
There are some catches to creating video game videos on YouTube and using them to make a profit. Mainly, there are some concerns that these videos could conflict with copyright laws. Generally, legal experts agree that as long as you provide commentary while you are playing the game you are covered by fair use laws and able to legally produce videos. YouTube will only allow monetization if videos include step by step commentary as a result.
In order to make money with videos on YouTube, you can use Google AdSense. You can sign up for an account and then the service will add commercials that play before your videos. If someone clicks on the advertisement, you’ll receive money. To get the funds accumulated from video clicks, you must earn a certain minimum dollar amount, which Google frequently updates.
Twitch.tv is another place where you can make money with video game videos. A newer site, Twitch is dedicated exclusively to video games, and its number of visitors grows every month. To make money on the site, you must complete a form and become a partner. Then, you can qualify for regular payments based on revenue made by your videos.
In order to become a contributor, you need to meet certain requirements established by Twitch. You must show evidence of consistently publishing videos and you must have a good sized viewing audience. As a result, you’ll need to broadcast videos for free on Twitch for awhile and build followers and an audience before applying.
If you really want to make money with YouTube or Twitch, the quality of your videos will matter greatly. While there are millions of people who watch video game tutorials and demonstrations, there are also thousands of other people making these videos. As a result, you need to produce content that is unique.
Commentary that is especially funny or clever, demonstrations that show secrets and tips that few people know and other creative content will help to set you apart from other video producers and put you on the path to making money with monetized videos.
4. Test Video Games Professionally
Before a video game can be released for sale, it must be tested to ensure that it is free of bugs and defects that interfere with game play. Because this can take thousands of hours, video game publishers hire specialized testers to play their games for them.
Becoming one of these testers can allow you to earn a rather nice supplemental income; however, the work can be very difficult. You will need to be very detail oriented and perceptive and be able to keep an accurate running log of the bugs and flaws that you find. Most of the time, testers must work under high pressure deadlines and must meet a certain quota for the number of flaws and mistakes that they find.
Video game testers typically earn somewhere between $17,000 and $25,500 per year. Testers who are very good at what they do and are experienced can sometimes earn upwards of $42,000 annually. You typically don’t need to have a degree or any other type of experience to apply for a video game testing job; however, people who have backgrounds in computer programming, game design, graphic design and areas related to video game development may be selected before others for open positions.
The world of video game testing can be very competitive, as many people find the idea of being paid to play games appealing.
Before you apply for a job as a game tester, it’s important to be aware of some of the downsides of these types of jobs. The pay per hour is often very low when you consider how much work it can take to find the required number of errors to receive payment.
Because the work can be so time consuming, game testers may be unable to hold full-time jobs in other fields. There is very little job security in the industry, and you may go for periods where you’re unable to find work at all. This means that game testing is usually not a feasible option as a sole source of income either.
A clear upside to why you should earn money as a game tester is, that you are able to do the job from home. There are no requirements to where you sit in the world, and this makes a game tester job very attractive.
If you want to succeed as a video game tester, you need to go into the job thinking from the perspective as an error finder rather than a gamer. You likely won’t enjoy playing the game the way that you would want to with the games you’ve purchased.
In addition to professional video game testing positions, there are casual sites that allow you to earn small amounts of money for playing games for short periods of time. You can try a site like PlayerResearch.com which pays a flat fee for playing a game for 45 minutes and then answering questions or providing feedback about the experience.
5. Become an E Sports Competitor
If you excel at playing video games, e sports may be for you. At e sports competitions, top players vie for cash prices either alone or in teams. While champion e sports players do not earn as much as professional athletes, the most successful ones can earn a large amount of money.
Take Jae Dong Lee, the most successful contestant to date, who has made over $500,000 in winnings or Marc Mangiacapra of the UK who has earned almost $65,000.
To enter the world of competitive e sports, it’s best to start off with local competitions. You can search the Internet to find competitions that are close to home. These match-ups may only have small cash prizes, but they will allow you to see what the world of competitive gaming is like.
Some competitions can qualify you for larger ones with larger prizes, and the more than you compete, the more confident you’ll become and better prepared you’ll be to enter into larger contests.
Being an e sports competitor can also lend some authority to a video game blog, YouTube account or Twitch account, allowing you to make more money through other revenue streams while you work toward winning prizes.