Esports revenue: Which games and their competitors have made the most money? cover image

Esports revenue: Which games and their competitors have made the most money?

Read below for a list of the top esports franchises in the US and their leading competitors when it comes to earnings.

As one of the world's highest-growing industries, esports has taken over when it comes to modern entertainment. With 30 million consumers in the US alone, the industry is predicted to scale to $1.8 billion by 2025.

A recent study done by Bonus Ninja revealed the most popular esports franchises within the country and the richest competitors residing within them.

Here is the top five.

1. League of Legends

With 36% of esports fans in the US following the League of Legends competitive scene, the game holds first place for the most popular esports franchise. This comes as no surprise, considering the game's massive fanbase worldwide.

Leading the front is competitor Peter “Doublelift” Peng. Located in California, Peng has accumulated $306,475.81 in prize money from the popular MOBA.

Being the top game in the US, you would think it would take the cake for the richest competitors. To our surprise, Peng does not even sit in the top five highest-earned gamers within the US.

2. Call of Duty

In the study, Bonus Ninja found that 23% of the people they polled were competitive Call of Duty fans. This puts the game at number two for the most popular esport franchises in the US.

With multiple tournaments spanning across different game modes, the game holds a high standard for the gaming community.

Not only does this game have large-scale tournaments, but it also holds some of the highest prize pools within the esports industry.

Crimsix via the Players' Tribune
Crimsix via the Players' Tribune

Ian “Crimsix” Porter currently holds the record amongst Call of Duty players when it comes to earnings. The player has earned $1.4 million, while still actively competing.

3. Apex Legends, FIFA and Super Smash Bros

Apex Legends, FIFA and Super Smash Bros have the attention of 17% of esports fans within the US, tieing the three games for third place. Not only do these games hold massive fan bases, but they also have players earning six figures just from competing.

Apex Legends competitor Philip "ImperialHal" Dosen currently holds the top earnings, with $318,821 in winnings. The TSM player continues to bring his A-game when it comes to performance and competition.

Philip Dosen via Liquipedia
Philip Dosen via Liquipedia

In the Super Smash Bros world, 29-year-old Juan "Hungrybox" Debeidma currently holds the lead for earnings with approximately $395,738 in prize money.

Hungrybox via Inven Global
Hungrybox via Inven Global

In the FIFA realm, Christopher “Chris” Holly currently holds the number one in earnings with $167,686. While this may not be nearly as much as the others, it is still quite a bit to earn competitively.

Chris Holly via New York City FC
Chris Holly via New York City FC

4. Fortnite and CS:GO

Taking fourth place together is Fortnite and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, where 16% of participants claim to follow both esport franchises. Regardless of where the games are on the list, they both hold some of heaviest prize pools.

In 2019, Kyle "Bugha" Giersdorf shocked the world when he won the Fortnite World Cup, awarding him the largest amount of earnings amongst any other gamer in the US. Giesdorf currently has made $3,492,986.72 playing Fortnite.

Bugha via TMZ
Bugha via TMZ

Giesdorf is currently still competing within Fortnite, with recent titles such as an FNCS champion during Chapter 2.

With CS:GO being tied with Fortnite, the highest-earned competitor in the US for the first-person shooter is Jakey "Stewie2k" Yip, who currently has $1.1 earned.

5. Overwatch

The fifth most followed esports franchise in the US is Overwatch. Being as the series just released the successor to its 2016 predecessor, the Overwatch community has been making a comeback within the gaming world.

Moth via Dot Esports
Moth via Dot Esports

The current highest earned US player within the franchise is Grant “Moth” Espe, who currently holds $353,965 in winnings.

As esports continues to scale in growth, we should expect new competitors to pop up within the scene, creating new opportunities for the community and its players.

Stay tuned to for more esports news and updates.