eSport Legends

eSports is a rising professional sport with an ever-improving public image. Slowly but surely, it’s becoming an international sensation, turning everyday gamers into household names. The stars of professional gaming are now working their way into the top tier of professional athletes, earning millions of dollars through tournaments and sponsorship.

It’s not surprising. League Of Legends, for example, a popular eSports title, has more than 30 million players worldwide. That’s a large market of potentially interested viewers of eSports, evident in the packed stadiums around the world that watch the best LoL players compete for ultimate glory.

The rise of Twitch has also played a pretty big part, with many pro players either having graduated from Twitch onto the big stage, or turning to entertainment and embracing the streaming platform to build an audience. Whether it’s CS:GO, Call Of Duty, Overwatch, Dota 2 or LoL, the best gamers around the world are essentially guaranteed celebrity status.

Some pro players are bigger and better than the rest, however, so let’s take a look at some of the best eSports players of all time.


Johan

Johan “n0tail” Sundstein

DOTA 2

You can’t talk about esports legends without mentioning Johan “n0tail” Sundstein, who is the highest prize money earner of all time, as well as one of the most prominent figures in the Dota 2 professional scene. Despite being well known for his exploits in Dota 2, n0tail kicked off his career in another game, Heroes of Newerth (HoN); however, the professional scene was quick to fall apart, which led n0tail to switch to Dota 2. After making the switch, n0tail joined OG, where the team would have a lot of success. N0tail and his teammates went on to win back-to-back Dota 2 Internationals which netted him the majority of his US$7 million prize money that he earned over throughout his career. Still in 2024, Johan “n0tail” Sundestein sits atop the prize money earning table for all esports players.

Lee ‘Faker’ Sang-hyeok

Lee ‘Faker’ Sang-hyeok

League of Legends

Lee Sang-hyeok, better known as Faker within the gaming community was the core member of the T1 team who has picked him out of the solo queue with a goal of forming a professional League of Legends team with him being the mid-lane player. This turned out to be a good investment because Faker really rose through the ranks quickly and is now considered to be the best League of Legends player by most journalists and gamers. He is mostly known for being an unbeatable LeBlanc player until the year 2015. Other champions that Lee prefers are Fizz, Zed, and Orianna and some of his notable achievements include placing first in the LCK 2019 Summer Playoffs as well as taking the first place in Rift Rivals 2019 LCK-LPL-LMS-VCS. Faker claimed his fourth World Championship title in his home country of South Korea in 2023, meaning he has won the most World Championships of any player in the history of League of Legends.

Christopher 'GeT_RiGhT' Alesund

Christopher ‘GeT_RiGhT’ Alesund

Counter-Strike

This is up for much debate, because the CS community is so divided as to who the “best ever” pro CS player is. One thing’s for sure, however, and that’s that GeT_RiGhT (gotta love that username) is definitely one of the best. He’s been playing since 2007, and is well-known for all-round consistency and “clutch” play: the ability to come out on top and beat an opponent during tense moments. Few could argue that his game IQ is through the roof, making him an invaluable asset to any pro team. His style of play is such that opposing teams need to completely change their strategy to play around him, giving GeT_RiGhT’s team an immediate advantage from the get-go.

Seth 'Scump' Abner

Seth ‘Scump’ Abner

Call Of Duty

The two-time Major League Gaming (MLG) X Games gold medalist, Scump is one of the more recognisable eSports athletes going around. Currently the captain of OpTic Gaming, he has had a long and storied Call Of Duty pro history, evolving into numerous lucrative sponsorship deals with major peripheral and hardware brands. He’s won more than a quarter of a million dollars playing Call Of Duty, namely Call Of Duty: Advanced Warfare, and has more than a million subscribers on YouTube and as much followers on Twitter.

Turner ‘Tfue’ Tenney

Turner ‘Tfue’ Tenney

Fortnite

We can’t talk about Fortnite without mentioning this prominent figure as well. We are of course talking about Turner Tenney, more commonly known as Tfue within the Fortnite community. Tfue is arguably the best Fortnite player alongside Ninja and they even had a rivalry at one point, often trading the top spot between each other. Tfue was a member of the Faze Clan which is a streaming organization and has won many tournaments alongside his teammate Cloakzy. One of his most notable achievements is the taking the first place in four out of the nine Friday Fortnite Tournaments. There is a lot of controversy surrounding this player and his esport and streaming careers are both on hiatus right now. Only time will tell how it all plays out for Tfue.

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Amelia
Amelia
8 months ago

What about female players?