Back in the earlier days of computer games, the narrative would be that playing sports was “cool” while video games were seen as something that was nerdy and had no future. However, fast forward to today, and that narrative has changed massively. Take Kyle “Bugha” Giersdorf, a 16-year old teen who took home a cool $3 million and the title in the first ever Fortnite World Cup championship.
This is no doubt a huge sum of money and just goes to show how big the world of eSports has become, where there is enough interest for such huge prize pools to be created. The prize pool for the Fortnite World Cup match was at $30 million, which by the way matches the FIFA Women’s World Cup, a more traditional sports championship.
As Engadget points out, Giersdorf took home more money than what some famous athletes did when they won their respective games, such as golf legend Tiger Woods who earned $2.07 million with his 15th major title. Epic’s Fortnite seems to be on track to have one of the largest prize pools for gaming tournaments, although Valve’s Dota 2 “The International” is still very much in the lead for that, where winning teams have taken home cash prizes as much as $11.2 million.
We’ve also seen how some educational institutions are acknowledging being good at video games is a skill worthy of a scholarship, to the point where we’re actually seeing parents hire tutors to help their kids improve in Fortnite.