Dream of becoming Pro in Fighting Games

Op and this thread


It’s great that you have a goal. It’s great that you’re taking steps to achieve that goal. Before you commit literally your entire life to that one goal, however, you need to know exactly what that means. What you want to do, have your sole source of income come from fighting game tournaments, does not lead to a fun financial life. There’s a professional Smash player (whether you think Smash is a fighting game or not is irrelevant for this example) that doesn’t have a job named Mew2King. His two sources of income are tournaments and Twitch streams. He came down to Texas twice on his way to a major in Florida. He had to have people pick him up from the airport, had to rely on people housing him, had to have people drive him to the local tournament he was stopping at on the way, drive him back to the place he was crashing, drive him to the airport, etc. Without relying on people’s generosity he probably wouldn’t have made money. 2-way plane ticket, 2/3 nights in a hotel, 2/3 days of food, would all be what, a thousand bucks? The pool for CEO 2015 in Melee was about $7500. Top 8 is 60/20/10/5/1.5/1.5/1/1, all in percents. That means that the only way he makes money to go to more tournaments with is if he places either first or second. And second would only be $1500, after the $1000 it cost to get there that can’t cover your bills for wherever you’re living for very long. Even assuming fighting games get ridiculously huge in the next ten years it’d require either a major every month with a similar pot or pots five times as large to actually have tournaments as your sole source of income. And you’d have to be overwhelmingly dominant for years at a time, something that’s only happened maybe twice in the history of fighting games. My point is that is extremely unlikely, regardless of how hard you work there will always be someone else who works as hard or harder, who can give you a literal run for your money.

As for improving at fighting games, understand why players do things. If you’re watching Haitani’s Makoto try to figure out why he uses standing fierce to frametrap instead of standing strong. If you’re playing against a Chun try to figure out why she’s going to hit standing fierce to poke you and take the appropriate action to counter it. Too many new players get caught up in the how without fully understanding why they’re imitating someone they saw from a tournament. Imitation is fine, actually a good place to start from, but you need to be aware of every question that top players use. What do they do, when do they do it, why do they do it, how, etc.

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I haven’t even read the rest of the thread yet, but take note of what we’re saying before you say we’re shitting on your thread, what an immature way to treat legitimate feedback that just isn’t what you wanted to hear. We’re not going to sugar coat it for you, we’re trying to support the goal with a grounded and realistic approach. I’m 18, one year older than you, so let’s look at this on equal terms, okay? I LOVE video games, Fighting Games are my favourite genre by far and I would love nothing more than to “go pro” I’ve been playing for almost 9 years now and I have around 4000 hours on Street Fighter IV alone, I play online all the time and have around 4000pp currently so I like to think I’m good at it, never attended an offline event but I really want to just to meet new people and play some solid offline matches. My goal for these games is DEFINITELY to be a name in the community, I’d love nothing more than to be the guy people are hype to watch play and have a cool sponsor with a jersey and the whole get-up that comes with it. EG Froztey, how dope would that be?

Do you think I’ve set my entire life ambition around becoming professional? Hell no. I’ve just finished further education here in the UK and I’ve come out with an A*/A/B in my chosen subjects so I’m more than prepared to tackle the next step in my life, and I have the foundations set to pursue something that won’t fall flat on me whilst I’m pursuing it. Pursuing fighting games as a legitimate career defeats the purpose of playing the game entirely. You don’t play the game to sustain your lifestyle by playing it, you play it because you enjoy it, and because your current lifestyle allows you to do so. Making money out of it and becoming sponsored is something that should be considered a side goal, all we want to do is play the game we love and it’s why we all come to the forums in the first place - fighting games. We’re not shitting on you, we just don’t want someone to end up as a bum barely getting by because they want to play video games for a living, and you’re a total stranger to us so if anything we’re being pretty kind-hearted here.

Sure, follow your aspirations and attempt to become someone who is sponsored in the FGC. But for heaven’s sake, don’t waste your life chasing it and work a dead-end job for your entire life on this planet. The FGC is a place to make friends, learn about the game you love, and watch everyone try to prove themselves the best of the bunch, it was never about making a career out of it and only a handful of players have made such a career out of it - Daigo Umehara is one to make note of.

Also 2 years is kinda short…I’m 18 and I’m still juggling between what I want to do. My dream was/is to become a professional boxer but it’s a damn hard sport to even break into slightly. I wanted to be a chef at one point and then discovered I fucking hate how tedious some aspects of cooking are. I wanted to be these easily for 2-3 year periods of my life. Currently at an impass on what to do for a career. Don’t take negative feedback as something to disregard, actually listen to it and take a more grounded approach to what you’re doing. You’ll end up making ends-meat your entire life otherwise. Street Fighter should be considered a hobby with the possibility of making money on the side when you consider almost all American players aren’t making enough money to support themselves through a sponsorship, how are you going to? Japan is really the only place where players truly get to “make it” but even then, it’s still such a small percentage probably around <1% of that nations population.

Dude, that was some of the realest shit. Props.

P.S - Katawa Shoujo, Hanako best waifu.

I bet Ryan Hart learned to speak fluent Japanese while flipping burgers at McDonalds.
Mike Ross probably graduated from university in TV and film productions, while working 8 hours at Walmart.

Get real, lol.
All those people just happened to be approached by sponsors and did not put all their time into gaming hoping to get a sponsorship.

Lol. Only games you can make a living off of are Moba’s and FPS, and Magic the Gathering.
Thats where the real money is at. Talking about 25K-1mil prize pools.

Fighting Games just don’t give tthat kind of money every tourny, and the people who do make money in it have been in the community for like 10+ years, well fucking known, and still went to college and used their education to bring shit to the community that people are willing to pay them for.

Get an education or learn a trade and play games on the side like everyone else who made it big playing fighting games. If you get to the point where you can just stream, go to tournies, get a sponsor and can at least make 50K a year just playing games? Cool, but don’t bank your entire future on something so fucking dumb.

He hasn’t taken into account this effect it can have on people either, which is definitely something that happened to me in regards to the subjects I took into further education - an example I found online.

“When I was about nineteen I knew this guy called Andrew, who was a junior accountant, a few years out of college. Andrew didn’t really like being an accountant, at least, that’s what he was fond of saying. His passion, of all things, was antique silverware. In particular, antique silver cutlery. In particular, antique silver teaspoons. He knew A LOT about antique silver teaspoons. He collected them en masse. He lived and breathed them. OK, maybe that’s a pretty strange hobby, but hey, he was pretty much a national authority on them. To make a long story short, eventually he quit his accountancy gig and got a new job as at a very prestigious auction house, specializing in valuing silverware. I remember buying him a drink and congratulating him. What happy news! A few years later, I was hanging out at the same bar with some mutual acquaintances, and his name came up in conversation. This time the news wasn’t so happy. Apparently he had recently lost his job. Apparently he had gone into rehab for alcoholism. What a bloody shame. “That’s why you should never turn your hobby into your job,” said one of my friends, someone far older and wiser than me. “Before, this man had a job and a hobby. Now suddenly, he’s just got the job, but no hobby any more. But a man needs both, you see. And now what does this man, who’s always had a hobby, do with his time? My friend held up his glass. “Answer: Drink.” Make of this what you will.”

Taken from some random site that I Google’d the effect from. Can easily happen with fighting games.

Actually now after reading all that, has fgc prizepools stayed the same or increase over those years?
I remember some rts gamers said prizepool was in the millions btw, conan Obrian was on a episode where he was commentating a world of craftwar match.

But to hanako, bruh…you is one drastic nigga lol. Don’t get me wrong I learned a few things from alucard but dude that is a pretty drastic way of thinking and honestly it sounded grim the way you said it. That was serious.
And Haitani makoto is regular makoto tactics.

Some moves in the game is complete ass keep that in mind too.

They’re higher now than they’ve ever been.

To keep it short, if you wanted to live solely from tournament winnings you would have to place top 3 in almost all competitions to get by at an average amount. You would need a hell of a hot streak. If we removed the CPT pot bonuses we’re still abysmally low in comparison to the big e-Sports, hell even with the CPT pot bonus. As stated only RTS/MOBA games offer legitimate sources of income.

Brah. You’dd have to place first every time.
2nd and third would just pay for the trip there and the cost of hotel. Maybe have a few bucks for bills and other necessities. Traveling is expensive as all hell and unless you live like right where every single tournament happens then you’ll be paying bank just to go from tourny to tourny.

If you do manage to get First or Second at CPT you’ll be fine for a year, two if first place (maybe more depending how your spending habits are.)

Compare that shit to a moba like Dota 2, the international tournament is at 18mil pot bonus right now. 18 fucking million dollars. Even low end Moba tournaments still will net you like 40K for first (this is after splitting it with your team btw,) probably 20K for second, and 10K for third.

Same goes with First person shooters like CS:GO and the like.

Same goes with card games like Hearthstone and magic, and depending on the way they do tournaments you will probably end up keeping the prize pool yourself without having to split it 2-5 ways.

Well over time it could grow I guess, cuz if world of craftwar has prizepool in the millions, and fps games?Well actually some of em is fun I get that, warhammer and halo wars are pretty good rts games but the speed was so slow lol. I had to use cheat engine just to make warhammer average speed, they give you way too much time in battle imo.

Come to think of it all those games with higher prizepools have a very low execution window in comparison. One button winstreak games. Should be the other way around, because of persona’s crazy ass lol.

They’re growing, and now we have the backing of Sony the prize pots will grow more. But it will take years before we hit the multi-millions in competitions, our biggest event is the only thing that breaks everyday viewership for MOBAs and Hearthstone. We don’t have a large enough community.

Something has gone tragically wrong in this community if people can consider it a dream to be a professional fighting game player.

Not gonna knock the over the top of the screen games cuz I like warhammer and halo wars but hearthstone? Wow. Hearthstone has a prizepool. -_- shame, for such shame.

“Hey guys! DSP here, I am a former PRO fighting game player” snort

Wow, there’s a lot of people that posted here so it would take forever to reply to everyone individually. Before I continue, I’m just going to say screw the people that just came here to call me an idiot or say “lol.” Seriously, why the hell are you here in the first place? I came here for advice, nothing more.

 With that being said, I want you all to know I read everything posted here. The main thing everyone keeps talking about is how it's unlikely to be a viable career to make a sole living out of, and that I should take a more grounded approach by continuing education and getting a good job while playing fighting games on the side as a hobby. What I was thinking is it could be possible to make a living out of it if you make a big enough name for yourself, because then you could possibly be making money from multiple sources, like sponsors, live streaming, creating videos on fgc stuff, etc, and people would actually watch your stuff because you're good and they want to learn from you. And maybe you'd even get certain job opportunities from companies that support the fgc for being a big name out there, who knows. But i understand, it's highly unlikely as you guys keep saying. 

 The thing is there literally isn't anything else I want to do in life. Well maybe there's one or two things I like the "idea" of(working for Gameinformer, or becoming an artist in the manga style), but I have doubts I'd be able to make it in Journalism and I hell as sure know I don't have what it takes to become a competent artist. Trust me, I've tried, but there's always going to be an artist that's light years ahead of you that makes your art look like shit, unless you're just that amazing. For these reasons I just looked at the one thing in life I was truly motivated to do, and that's competing in fighting games. If there was something else more viable I was motivated to do, I would just keep fighting games as a strong hobby... But there isn't.

 As for the talk on other games having more money involved, I know about that. Not too long ago I was really into League of Legends, a popular RTS game, but I stopped enjoying the game and quit playing it. Maybe because I took it so seriously I'd get too frustrated to enjoy it, or maybe because it actually started to bore me. Or maybe both, I'm not sure.

 Also thanks for caring guys, really. It may not all be strategies on improving in-game but there have been some really in-depth posts here, which I'm glad you've taken the time to type. And thanks to those that even put in a few tips on improving in-game as well.

Speaking of pocket change, there is always Youtube

A better response to the stuff said, I at least respect that you read it all thoroughly this time. Okay let me just give some short responses to things.

And you haven’t thought about how that could happen for Street Fighter either? People get bored of games and just quit sometimes. I’ve seen many players just drop the game and move on when they’re like 5-6 years into it.

Street Fighter as a whole is not a career, that’s the main issue. Justin Wong, Daigo, Kazunoko, Momochi, PR_Rog(Insert player name) only started to played because they LOVE the game, and never initially wanted anything other than just to play the game. The sponsorships and money they make via their sponsors are something they never intended to get - a “perk” of their investment of time into their hobby. You can get into a position like Maximillian where he isn’t great at the games yet makes money just by producing content and having a large following, but yet again this was a hobby for him which has just gotta extra perks along the way.

Playing Street Fighter isn’t a career or a source of income, in it’s current form it is impossible to sustain yourself by just being a “pro” player. It’s just a hobby, and you may/may not be able to get a bit of money out of it if you amass a following or win events. It’s fine if you just want to be good and face the competition, but it is near impossible to actually sustain yourself through this video game. I’m not trying to put you down for having an aspiration but doing it because of money is the wrong way to go about it, it’s just a video game that you play because you like it.

Dude! You’re 17, I’m 18. There is literally so much for us to discover it isn’t even funny. Nobody finds their calling in life by just sitting around and saying “I don’t have anything I want to pursue” if you lack ambition, you have to at least be willing to research into new things and explore the working world. I’m just looking for the right University course so I’ve taken a year out just to find it and I’ll be working a part-time job to gather funds for my University fees. I’m clueless on what I want to do, but I’ll find it on my own.

I love video games too, they’re one of my only hobbies outside of like…Boxing and uh…that’s it really. But I didn’t start playing them and think “This is my career path, I will make money doing this” because the reality of it is I won’t A - Because it isn’t a valid source of income and B - Because I play it as a leisure activity, why would I turn that into work and put pressure on my shoulders?

For an outward perspective of what you’re saying - look up a YouTuber by the name of DarkSydePhil who thinks his YouTube channel is a “Full time job” and see how desperate this dude is to get by, but take into account how he enjoys NONE of the games he plays now. And do you know why he doesn’t enjoy them any more? Because it became about views and pushing out new videos of the newest games as quick as possible, he has no time to actually enjoy a game, he just beats it once and goes onto the next new game to sustain himself. It’s a huge shame his life turned into what it is, he’s essentially wasted his life. He also used to be a part of the FGC and got universally kicked out because he’s a douche, but that’s beside the point.

You think this attitude is getting you a top spot in fighting games?
You know how Daigo/Justin/Sako/Momochi/whoever would make your gaming craft look when they are sitting next to you?
You will never make it far in anything if you do not work for it.

Most people here know how shit the feeling is that there’s always somebody that does what you love better than you and makes shit that you thought was impossible look like it’s easy.
That’s what famous artists, journalists and pro gamers feel as well. The difference is that they do not get discouraged by that, throw all they’ve worked for in the trash bin and start thinking of a new direction (that’s even harder to achieve than what they did before) and start at 0 again only to get discouraged again and start the cycle of failure anew.

No they fucking feed on that shit and work through that crappy feeling towards the goal of bettering themselves day in and day out.

Sorry to be so blunt but you sound like someone who gets handed everything and never had to work for anything in his life, and I guarantee you that if you don’t sit down on your ass and work for the shit you want to do, nobody will come to you and hand it to you on a silver platter, unless your name is Paris Hilton.

Becoming a journalist is not even far fetched as well as becoming an artist, if you put a couple of hours into it every day and push your education into that direction.
You could take courses in English as well as your native language, work with the school newspaper and write articles for gaming sites like SRK/JoinDota/TeamLiquid who always look for volunteers in your free time and that shit even makes you look good in your resume.
Then go to university and learn all that rhetoric and journalist mumbo jumbo and apply for a job.
You could even play fighting games in your free time and get good while doing so. UltraDavid is a fucking lawyer for example.

Instead you say "Fuck it, too much work, let’s become a pro gamer"
I swear you will never get an Evo Moment 37 in any part of your life if you don’t sort out your shit and change your attitude towards work.