League of Legends is known worldwide by its regular, amateur players, but there is also a more competitive type of gamer who is in it to make money. Some of these professional gamers have made over $500,000 throughout their League of Legends career.
League of Legends offers some huge tournament winnings—Season 2 World Championship being the biggest, featuring a $2.8 million prize pool for the winners. League provides professional players stability, especially when it comes to salaries. Some professional League players can make over $100,000 a year on salary alone, with some of the top players earning closer to $300,000 per annum.
We’ve hunted down the figures to bring to you the top 13 highest paid League of Legends players in 2018.
13) Jang “Looper” Hyeong-seok – $346,307
Jang “Looper” Hyeong-seok is a Korean player who has retired, he was previously the Top laner for Echo Fox. Looper made his fame during his time in Samsung White where they won the 2014 World Championship—which is where most of his earnings came from.
Samsung White then dissolved because of Riot enforcing rules on organisations owning more than one team in a region. This meant that Samsung White and Samsung Blue ceased to exist, leaving only one team—Samsung Galaxy.
12) Cho “Mata” Se-hyeong – $418,207.64
Cho “Mata” Se-hyeong is a Korean player who is currently playing support for KT Rolster. Since winning Worlds with Samsung White in 2014, Mata was a part of two other teams before joining KT Rolster in December 2016.
A large proportion of Mata’s earnings came from a famous World Championship victory, with the minority coming from regional performances.
Mata spent two years in the LPL (Legends Pro League) with very little success, failing to make a name for himself with Vici Gaming and Royal Never Give Up. He decided to move back to Korea to play alongside his old teammate, PawN.
11) Ming “ClearLove” Kai –$428,086.78
ClearLove is a substitute jungle for EDward gaming, he is also the only Chinese player on this list. He earned the majority of his prize money through multiple regional titles and by leading EDG to multiple knockout rounds at Worlds.
ClearLove began playing League of Legends in 2011, and has been playing for EDG since 2013. He has successfully helped the team make multiple World Championships.
10) Heo “PawN” Won-seok – $435,240.64
Heo “WonSeok” Won-seok kickstarted his career playing for MiG Blitz under the name Wonseok as a mid laner during the HOT6iX Champions Summer 2013. He left the team in October 2013 to join Samsung Blue when he changed his name to “PawN”. PawN made a name for himself in the 2013 WCG Qualifiers when he managed to solo kill Faker in Lane. PawN later became the mid lane for Samsung White, achieving the highest earner from the roster, and he’s done the best since the team was dismantled.
PawN joined EDG in December 2014, and he stayed with the team for nearly two years. He has won multiple regional titles and earned a lot more money after his heroics at Worlds 2014 in comparison to his former teammates. PawN eventually left EDG to head back to Korea and join KT Rolster in December 2016.
9) Kang “Blank” Sun-gu – $559,518.75
Blank is a Korean League of Legends player who joined SKT in 2016 as a jungler. He has since helped the team to both regional and international success numerous times. Out of the 15 cash awarding tournaments that Blank has competed in, the largest amount was $338,000 from LoL 2016 World Championships. He ranked first, making up 60.41% of his total prize money won. Before the age of 18, Blank was awarded $25,528 in cash prizes from 3 tournaments.
8) Gao “Ning” Zhen Ning – $566,369.53
Ning is a top League of Legends player from China. He’s earned over $566,000 from a total of 16 tournaments. His largest win was $403,125.00 from the LoL 2018 World Championship.
Ning’s main role is Jungle, and he’s currently the jungler for Invictus Gaming.
7) Jo “Core JJ” Yong In – $569,837.84
Core JJ is another Korean League of Legends player. Nearly half of his earnings came from a single tournament in the LoL 2017 World Championship where he placed first and won an impressive $309,185.67.
Core JJ is mainly a support player and currently plays for Team Liquid.
6) Song “Rookie” Eui Jin – $610,207.36
Rookie is a Korean League of Legends player who has accumulated over $500,000 from the game. Before his 18th birthday he had already earned over $18,000 in cash prizes from various tournaments.
His largest win was in 2018 at the LoL World Championships where he won over $400,000 in a single tournament. Rookie is currently a mid-laner for the team Invictus Gaming.
5) Bae “Bengi” Seong-woong – $810,683
Bae Seong-ung (also known as Bengi), began his professional career by playing as a jungler for SKT. Bengi was a huge factor in contributing to SKT’s success thanks to his outstanding consistency. The three-time world champion left SKT at the start of the year to join team Vici Gaming—but he struggled in his debut.
4) Bae “Bang” Jun-sik – $910,451.46
Bae “Bang” Jun-sik joined NaJin Shield in 2012 as their ADC. After this start to his competitive career, he joined SKT in 2013 as their starting AD carry. Bang has had an amazing career since joining SK Telecom and has since helped the team secure multiple regional and international titles. His large earnings are a recipe of successive Worlds titles, MSI titles, and regional success.
3) Lee “Wolf” Jae-wan – $913,084.70
Lee “Wolf” Jae-wan also began his competitive career in 2012 when he joined NaJin Shield as their new support. Wolf is currently playing for SKT in the LCK. Wolf has grown in global dominance over the past few years, and he’s arguably been the best support in the world for some time. Partnering with his teammate Bang, they are undeniably the best bot lane in the world.
2) Lee “Duke” Ho-seong – $954,620.62
Lee “Duke” Ho-seong is a top laner for Invictus Gaming. He was previously known as Leopard. Most of Duke’s winnings though, come from his time with SKT in season six when he helped win the team the Spring Split title and the 2016 World Championships. After coming 1st in Worlds with SKT, Duke left SKT to join Invictus Gaming. But Duke’s luck ran out when he lost against Team WE in the Summer Regional Qualifiers to prevent him from returning to Worlds in 2017.
1) Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok – $1,255,465.80
League’s highest earner is also considered to be the very best player in the world—Faker.
Faker is currently the highest paid League of Legends player and the first ever player on League to earn in excess of $1 million. This can be attributed to winning three World Championship titles, two mid-season invitational (MSI) titles, and a number of LCK regional titles.
Is there any stopping this King of Leagues?
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