With Astralis continuing success, most recently in ECS Season 6. We have seen 3 of their members break the $1,000,000 in tournament earnings. The first players to do so in the game and a sign of not only the strength of Astralis as a team but CS:GO as an esport. Breaking the $1,000,000 barrier means they are now in Esports highest earners.
As more games esports scenes mature with ever more tournaments and higher prize money we thought it would be fun to look at the highest earners of each of the big games. To look at how they got there, who they play with and just how big their bank accounts might be.
CS:GO Highest Earner – Andreas “Xyp9x” Højsleth
The story of the highest earner in CS:GO is really the story of the three core members of Astralis. They are Peter “Dupreeh” Rasmussen and Nicolai “Dev1ce” Reedtz and taking the top spot for earnings is Andreas “Xyp9x” Hojsleth who won $1,040,000 in his CS:GO career to date.
The main reason for their success is a simple one – stability. These 3 have been playing together for over 5 years, making their first appearance together back in September 2013 under the banner of Copenhagen Wolves. Since then they have played under Dignitas, Team SoloMid and for a short time they were unsigned attending tournaments as Team Question Mark. It was in this period where plans were put into place to create their own organization where the players themselves would have an ownership stake.
By 2016, Astralis was born and while there have been roster changes, most famously Karrigan leaving in February of that year to lead FaZe clan, the three original players have stuck together.
And how that stability has paid off. It was 2018 when things finally fell into place for Astralis, and this is arguably the greatest year for any CS:GO team ever. Since April they have won the DreamHack Masters Marseille, ECS Season 5, ELeague CS:GO Premier, FACEIT Major: London, Intel Extreme Masters XIII and most recently the ECS Season 6.
Xyp9x has played a vital role in that success, a support player with the raw skill of a star player. He is known for his insane clutch plays, to the point you wouldn’t bet against Astralis, even if he is the last man alive. It’s a skill that has gotten them out more than a few holes this season and made him an indispensable part of the team.
The story for Xyp9x and Astralis is far from over next week they take to the stage again in the $750,000 ESL Pro League Season 8.
Total Prize Winnings: $1,040,300
Dota 2 Highest Earner – Kuro “KuroKy” Takhasomi
Kuro Takhasomi isn’t just the highest earner in Dota 2 he is the highest earning esport player ever. He has been playing the game professionally since the beginning and his road to the top was a long one. It took 7 years and the captains role at Team Liquid for things to finally click into place for the German-born Iranian but when it did, there was no stopping him.
He has now accomplished more alone than other teams combined. His winnings speak for himself; he has already amassed more than $4 million in earnings, He’s one of only 34 other players to have ever hoisted the Aegis of Champions and won The International of which he is one of a few who has competed at every single one. This is a feat matched only by two other players: his former teammate Clement ‘Puppey‘ Ivanov and Chinese stalwart Leong ‘ddc‘ Fat-meng.
While all of these achievements highlight KuroKy as a special player, one record propels him above the rest: being the first professional Dota 2 player to ever win 1,000 games throughout his career. With Team Liquid still looking strong, they finished 4th in this year’s International, there’s no doubt that KuroKy will add to this prize money in the years to come.
But what of the future? KuroKy may already be thinking about life after Dota 2, he recently appeared in the first official Artifact tournament finishing a respectable 4th.
Total Prize Winnings: $4,100,000
Fortnite Highest Earner – Turner “Tfue” Tenney
The game is just over a year old and the professional scene even younger than that, but Fortnite is already the 5th highest esport with respect to earnings and one player has been at the forefront of this cash grab – Turner Tenney but you probably know him as Tfue.
Tfue exploded onto the scene when he and his duo partner Dennis “Cloakzy” Lepore were smashing the competition in Keemstar’s Friday Fortnite Tournaments. They excelled in the pub stomping tournament – winning it 4 times and taking home $40,000 each.
By the time the official tournaments kicked off many were already tipping the duo as the ones to beat. However, luck wasn’t on their side – which in a BR is kinda important. It was the players of Team Liquid and Ghost Gaming who most impressed, with Tfue’s best performance being with FaZe Yelo in Week 6 Day 1 which netted him a rather paltry $6,000.
But by the time Fall Skirmish started Tfue had ironed out the kinks in his game. He had found a landing spot in “El Dorada” that would become a signature of his game and he finally started taking home the big wins. There were 1st places in both Weeks 2 and 4 as a solo player which gave him Fall Skirmish winnings of $90,000.
While fans of Tfue were happy to see him succeed, it was bittersweet. Many had come to love him for his partnership with Cloakzy. Tfue with his insane aim and clutch plays and Cloak for his game sense – together they were the perfect Fortnite duo.
It was perhaps fitting then that when these two did finally win it was on the biggest stage of them all. Fall Skirmish Week 6 at TwitchCon. They dominated the weekend and in the Grand Finals Cloakzy single handily won the tournament with a performance in the first 3 games that will go down in Fortnite history. It ironically wasn’t Tfue’s greatest performance but that’s what teammates are for. This win alone would net the duo $200,000 and a claim to be the greatest duo in the game.
With the $100,000,000 Fortnite World Cup just around the corner, expect Tfue to add to this total in a big way.
Total Prize Winnings: $505,500
LoL Highest Earner – Sang Lee “Faker” Hyeok
A man considered by his peer as the “Lionel Messi of League Of Legends” certainly deserves his place at the top of the earnings charts. His entire career has been spent at SK Telecom and in that time he has risen to become the greatest player in the game, with his ability to play any champion a big part of his success. He has won the World Championship 3 times a joint record with former teammate Benji.
The last two seasons haven’t been as impressive – SK Telecom T1 lost to Samsung Galaxy in the Final of Season 7 before failing to qualify for the Season 8 World Championship in what many described as one of the most unpredictable worlds in League of Legends history.
That loss was followed by major changes at SK Telecom with 7 of their roster being released. Fakers position seems secure but with teams from China on the rise, Fakers time at the top may be running out.
Total Prize Winnings: $1,750,000
Rocket League Highest Earner – Courant “Kaydop” Alexandre
The French-born Courant “Kaydop” Alexandre has been at the top of the Rocket League world since RLCS Season 3. He came 2nd that year but followed that up with 3 Championship wins first with Gale Force and then a further 2 under the banner of Dignitas. They came so close this year but ran seemed to run up of steam in the final getting beat by Cloud9 in a victory that shocked many. Kaydrop is considered a key member of the Dignitas side. He isn’t known for his fancy tricks or crazy dribbles, he is just a highly dependable player who has expert game sense and knows how to attack and defend.
The earnings may look small compared to some of the other top leagues but the growth in Rocket League is a continuing phenomenon – with plans to expand the RCLS to South America and Asia the purse will only get larger. In fact, even though Kaydrop and his side lost the RLCS 6 they took home more than they won the previous year $40,000 to $33,000 – not bad for a weekends work.
Total Prize Winnings: $179,500
FIFA Highest Earner – Aldossary “MSdossary7” Mossad
When Aldossary Mossad of Saudi Arabia burst onto the scene in FIFA 17 he quickly established himself as one of the top players in the game.
His first tournament put him on the map winning Season 2 of theFIFA17 Ultimate Team Championship taking home $30,000. His reputation was further enhanced during the FIFA 18 season. He came 3rd in the FIFA eClub World Cup before winning the end of season FIFA eWorld Cup making him the undisputed No.1 FIFA player in the world. Money isn’t all he was won, FIFA esport players also get invited to the glitzy FIFA Award ceremony where he got to rub shoulders with top players in Football like Neymar and Ronaldo.
Msdossary is a clinical player, calm under pressure and is comfortable playing FIFA on both Xbox and Playstation a fact that puts him above many of his peers.
Total Prize Winnings: $315,500
So what do you make of the Esports highest earners? Who is in danger of losing their place? Will Dota 2 always be on top? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below