12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 202413 min read

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024<span class="wtr-time-wrap after-title"><span class="wtr-time-number">13</span> min read</span>
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The gaming industry has exploded in recent years into a $196 billion behemoth, with over 3 billion gamers worldwide in 2022. This number is expected to reach an astounding 4.95 billion by 2030 as gaming continues its relentless growth.

With so many people playing games these days across multiple platforms from mobile to console to PC, there are now more opportunities than ever to actually make a real income from gaming.

While only a tiny fraction of gamers ever go pro, there are many other viable ways to leverage gaming skills, knowledge and passion into profits in 2024 and beyond.

Here are 12 of the top money-making methods for gamers this year:

1. Compete Professionally in eSports

eSports, or organized, competitive video gaming, has become a massive industry that shows no signs of slowing down. Global eSports revenue hit $1.38 billion in 2021 and could surpass $1.62 billion in 2024 according to Statista.

The very top eSports athletes and teams can earn life-changing money from tournaments, salaries and sponsorships. For example, Johan "N0tail" Sundstein has earned over $7 million during his career in Dota 2 tournaments alone.

While it's extremely difficult to reach such rarified heights, more grassroots opportunities are emerging all the time in popular competitive games like:

●   League of Legends

●   Dota 2

●   Fortnite

●   Call of Duty

●   CS:GO

●   PUBG

Gamers can compete in a variety of online and live events with varying prize pools and entry fees to try to supplement or even replace their income. Platforms like ChallengeMe.gg make it easy to find and enter paid gaming competitions across many popular titles.

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

2. Live Stream on Twitch and YouTube

Live streaming gameplay on platforms like Twitch and YouTube has also become an incredibly popular way for gamers to engage audiences, build followings and generate income.

The very top gaming live streamers can make millions per year from subscriptions, donations, sponsorships and ads. However, the earning potential varies widely based on viewership and loyalty.

Here are some tips for making real money by live streaming games:

●   Pick one main game to focus on and excel at rather than bouncing around titles. Audiences connect more with streamers skilled in specific games.

●   Commit to a consistent schedule so fans know when to tune in and can develop loyalty.

●   Interact constantly with chat to build relationships with viewers.

●   Produce other gaming content like YouTube videos to direct viewers to streams.

●   Run ads, enabled channel subscriptions, and activate monetization options.

●   Build teams for multiplayer games to encourage bigger, more engaged audiences.

The more viewers a stream can consistently attract over time, the better the money-making potential.

3. Create Gaming-Related YouTube Videos

While Twitch dominates live streaming, YouTube remains the king of on-demand videos. And gaming is still one of the most popular categories on the platform.

Posting well-produced gaming videos on YouTube can be quite lucrative, even for creators will smaller audiences. With enough views, videos can generate sizable income through YouTube's Partner Program, which allows creators to earn a cut of ad revenue from their content.

Some types of popular gaming videos that tend to perform well include:

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

●   Walkthroughs & strategy guides – Showing how to make progress or overcome challenges in games.

●   eSports highlights – Posting clips and commentary around big plays in competitive matches.

●   Reviews – Providing thoughtful critiques and opinions on new game releases.

●   News & analysis – Discussing latest updates, patches, controversies and gaming trends.

●   Comedic commentary – Putting a humorous spin on gameplay moments.

YouTubers also supplement their earnings through sponsorships, merchandising and even donations.

While making a full-time living on YouTube involves a lot of work, dedication and on-camera charisma, anyone can start small and see where things go.

4. Blog About Your Gaming Passion

Building an audience and income from blogging takes serious time and marketing effort, but remains an option for gamers more inclined towards writing vs broadcasting.

Gaming blogs can cover the same popular themes and games as YouTube channels but give creators more ability to highlight their unique personality through deeper writing.

Income sources generally include:

●   Display and affiliate advertising tied to views

●   Sponsored posts and brand partnerships

●   Affiliate commissions from featuring products

●   Merchandising custom blog gear and assets

Keys to successful game blogging include:

●   Obsessively covering a specific game or genre – Don't bounce around, go deep on a specialty.

●   Post often – Multiple times per week, ideally daily.

●   Promote relentlessly – Reach readers directly through social media and SEO.

●   Monetize early – Have income sources clearly visible.

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

●   Engage the comments – Keep discussions active with readers.

While gaining traction can be a challenge, passionate bloggers can gradually build niche audiences and income around the games they love.

5. Become a Game Tester

Did you know companies will actually pay people to play games? That's right – everyday gamers can earn an income working as a game tester.

Also known as quality assurance (QA) testers, these crucial roles involve playing game builds extensively to identify bugs, glitches and issues prior to release so developers can squash them.

As gaming has expanded, more testers are in demand to work either in-house or as freelancers and identify problems across areas like:

●   Graphics, rendering and animation

●   UI, menus and buttons

●   Audio quirks and music

●   Text, localization and translations

●   Networking and server loads

●   Overall gameplay and progression

Strong attention to detail, patience for repetition, basic technical inclinations and good written communication skills are key for competent testers.

Working full-time as a tester pays above minimum wage on average, although freelance hourly rates can be higher. Many gamers enjoy testing as a side income source or entrypoint into full development roles down the road.

6. Coach Other Gamers

From athletes to musicians to CEOs, coaching is big business across every industry, and gaming is no exception.

With so many people playing so many competitive multiplayer titles these days, there's consistent demand for experts who can train gamers how to improve skills, strategy, coordination and awareness.

Common games people seek coaching for include:

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

●   Fortnite

●   League of Legends

●   Dota 2

●   Apex Legends

●   Valorant

●   CS:GO

But coaching skills apply widely to any PvP or strategy-focused title.

Experienced gamers can offer services coaching individuals and teams via:

●   One-on-one training sessions

●   In-depth VOD reviews

●   Team coordination guidance

●   Pre-game strategizing

●   In-game leadership as shotcaller

Hourly rates for gaming coaching often fall between $25-$100 depending on expertise, audience and services offered. But the most skilled coaches can charge premium prices, especially coaching pro players and teams.

Building visibility as an elite player yourself before transitioning into coaching is an excellent path towards profitability.

7. Offer Software Engineering Skills

Modern video games are software marvels, pushing machines to their limits through incredibly complex code and systems.

Developing and supporting these backend solutions takes an army of software engineers, programmers and developers with highly specialized skills.

Gamers with technology skills, training and experience have opportunities to work directly in gaming as programmers across domains like:

●   Core game engines

●   Graphics and physics

●   Artificial intelligence

●   Network infrastructure

●   Tool development

●   Cloud architecture

Top engineers can easily make over $100k+ per year, although expanding into tech lead and team management opens additional income potential.

Major gaming companies like Activision, EA, Epic Games and Ubisoft, as well as countless smaller indie studios, hire programming talent constantly.

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

But developers don't necessarily need to leave their basement or garage to profit. Savvy solo coders can offer their services to studios of all sizes on a freelance or contract basis as well.

8. Stream Software Development on Twitch

A growing trend merges gaming content creation and software development skills into one surprisingly popular form of entertainment: streaming live coding.

Programmers broadcast their screens on Twitch and interact with audiences while building games, bots, apps, tools, mods and more gaming tech wizardry.

It may sound boring, but game developers like Casey Muratori (Handmade Hero) and Sebastian Lague have built highly engaged communities around their educational, transparent coder streams.

Besides substantial revenue directly from subscriptions and donations during streams, programming creators open opportunities to profit indirectly:

●   Market valuable skills to studios

●   Build portfolio pieces leading to jobs

●   Launch viral indie games or projects

●   Promote related courses and tutorials

As with other creator niches, consistently enthralling a loyal audience night after night with amazing skills leads to money-making possibilities.

9. Start Gaming Side Hustles

Besides directly monetizing gameplay itself, gamers can also profit from various gaming-related side hustles with low startup costs.

These small business ideas rely more on general entrepreneurial skills rather than gaming prowess per se. But passion for games often provides helpful context and credibility.

Possible side hustles include:

Gaming blog/news site – Report on industry news for ad and affiliate income.

YouTube gaming channel – Post videos for views and subscribers.

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

Gaming tutor – Teach novice gamers for hourly fees.

eSports events organizer – Run local competitions.

Gaming gear reseller – Refurbish and sell quality used items.

Gaming account trader – Buy, sell, and trade accounts.

Fantasy eSports platform – Facilitate fantasy leagues and contests for commissions.

Game critic – Sell professional reviews of new releases.

Building any business takes risk, effort and some luck. But game-related ideas allow entrepreneurs to pursue profit around their gaming passion.

10. Sell Virtual Goods & Accounts

Many online games feature bustling in-game economies driving the sale of virtual items, currencies and accounts for cold hard cash.

Dedicated gamers put in long hours to unlock powerful gear, coveted skins, valuable currencies and high-level accounts prized by players wanting to skip grinds.

EVE Online players infamously game the game's systems to accumulate vast virtual wealth. Elite WoW raiders sell high-end characters on PlayerAuctions. Fortnite schemers flip expensive skins on secondary markets.

The practice violates most games' ToS, but remains widespread and lucrative. Sites like PlayerAuctions even facilitate sales, taking cuts from all transactions.

Savvy sellers can carefully cash out to supplement gaming hobby costs or even pay real bills. Secondary markets provide tax-free revenue streams completely under the table too.

However, sellers should beware risks like getting accounts banned or failing to offload goods. And transactions beyond a game's ecosystem often violate platforms’ terms, risking account termination.

11. Trade & Resell Items

If profiting directly from games doesn't appeal, passionate gamers can always make money adjacent to actual gameplay through arbitrage.

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

Buying, trading and reselling high-value gaming goods for profit resembles small-scale retail arbitrage – just with graphics cards, consoles and GPUs instead of household goods or clothing.

When supply chain issues make hot gaming gear hard to find at normal prices, gray market prices shoot up. Savvy speculators can score stock and flip for gains.

For example, the extremely limited supply of next-gen consoles created ripe opportunities for this kind of retail arbitrage:

●   Buy a PS5 at Best Buy for $500

●   Immediately relist on eBay for $800

●   Wait for bids to top $1,000

●   Profit!

The same price spikes happen regularly with the hottest new GPU releases gobbled up instantly by miners and then resold at major markups.

Reselling works for cheaper gaming collectibles too. Like buying rare Amiibo figures on clearance to sell for higher prices to collectors elsewhere.

However, large-scale reselling often crosses shaky ethical lines around hoarding and scalping in-demand goods. Yet casual gamers can offset personal costs through minor arbitrage.

12. Mine Cryptocurrency

At first glance, mining cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum doesn't seem directly related to gaming.

However, the activity represents a stealthier way passionate gamers can leverage PC gaming gear – high-end GPUs in particular – to generate passive crypto income.

See, the computations involved in cryptomining require serious graphics processing muscle – exactly what powerful graphics cards offer.

With a gaming PC already equipped with beefy GPUs, plugging into a mining pool allows gamers to put their rigs to alternate use mining crypto coins when not gaming. It's practically free money!

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

Services like NiceHash and Cudo Miner make it simple to optimize unused processing cycles towards mining. Then deposited coins can pay for new gear – or anything else.

While mining benefits spike and crash with crypto volatility and profitability varies by electricity costs, putting GPUs to alternate use can provide gamers supplemental income through literally zero extra effort.


Gaming skills, knowledge and passion offer more money-making opportunities than ever in 2024 and beyond for those wishing to transform leisure into profits.

Competitive gaming, content creation, coaching, merchandise sales, tech and more present both primary and secondary income streams. With some strategic moves, gamers can earn a living around the games they love.

The most successful gaming money-makers either go pro streaming and competing for huge audiences or leverage specific expertise through services or niche products.

But even casual gamers can profit through arbitrage, mining, tutoring, testing and hustling – no fame required.

With such a massive and growing base of gamers globally, the potential to profit from this thriving ecosystem only looks to expand over time.

So while making big money gaming certainly presents challenges and risks, exploring these methods could pay off with the right dedication and effort.

The games industry continues to explode in size and many gamers likely wonder whether they can translate passion into profession. Luckily, more opportunities emerge each year. So why not play around the edges and see what sticks?

Frequently Asked Questions

What was the most lucrative esports title in 2022?

Dota 2 enjoys the highest prize money payouts to players thanks to record-setting crowdfunded competition The International. Valve’s 2022 tournament distributed over $18 million to the winning team, bringing the total prize pool to nearly $40 million.

12 Lucrative Ways To Make Money Gaming In 2024

Do people really make a living playing games?

Yes! Top eSports competitors, gaming content creators, coaches and other roles can absolutely generate full-time incomes from gaming exclusively. However, earnings potential varies widely depending on game selection, audience size, sponsorships and skill mastery. Relatively few gamers earn celebrity-level salaries, but six and even seven figure careers happen.

What gaming job pays the most?

Based purely on base salary, highly technical software engineering and leadership positions tend to offer the most lucrative gaming industry career opportunities. For example, engineering directors at major studios can make over $200-300k. However, famous content creators and eSports athletes can out-earn traditional jobs through tournament prizes, donations from fans and sponsorship deals.

Can I start making money by live streaming right away?

Generally no – it takes most streamers significant time and effort to build an audience large and loyal enough to generate lucrative subscription and donation income. While anyone can start streaming instantly, making serious money relies on first cultivating viewership through sharing clips and leveraging other social channels. Streaming profits often start small through occasional donations and ads.

Do I need amazing gaming skills to coach other players?

Not necessarily! While credibility as an elite player certainly helps establish authority with coaching clients, skillful communicators can effectively analyze mistakes and provide quality improvement advice to a range of player skill levels. However, coaching professionals and competitive teams does require deep expertise and achievements in particular titles. Novices may benefit most from coaches focused on fundamentals.