Fortnite World Cup Finals
Updated: Dec 17, 2019
This week, a US teenager who goes by the name Bugha – real name Kyle Giersdorf – became the Fortnite World Cup Champion. The 16-year-old beat 99 other players, fighting his way to a $3m (£2.4m) victory.
Bugha got ahead in the very first round of the tournament, racking up nine kills and outlasting all other players.Though his performances in later rounds were less attention-grabbing, his consistency meant that he stayed in first place throughout. In the sixth and final round he stayed alive until the top 10, eventually falling, but already smiling because he knew no one could catch up to his points lead. He ended up with almost double the score of the second-place competitor.
Speaking after the tournament, Bugha said “I’m just so happy. Everything I’ve done, the grind, it’s all paid off.” His family was in the stadium to watch and congratulate him. So, too, were approximately 16,000 other attendees, with millions more tuning in online.
This now means that the 16-year-old has jumped to 10th in all-time esports player earnings. -according to esportsearnings.com
The World Cup title win has launched Bugha above thousands of players, pushing him to an earnings total of $3,025,900. This makes him the youngest player in the top 10 and the only player within the top 10 who isn’t a Dota 2 competitor.
Whilst everyone knows that’s a lot of money, Let's give Bugha's massive paycheck a little perspective. The $30 million prize pool for the Fortnite World Cup matched that of this summer's FIFA Women's World Cup, the biggest showpiece event in women's soccer. The teenager even earned almost 50 percent more than Tiger Woods did for winning the Masters -- the golfing legend scooped up $2.07 million along with his 15th major title.
One 15-year-old British player, Jaden Ashman, took home over £1m by placing second with his partner in the duos version of the competition on Saturday. He told the BBC that he would probably save half of it and put “quite a lot of it into a house and my family”.
His mother admitted that she had been “quite against his gaming”. But with Bugha, Ashman and others taking home life-changing amounts of money, and every competitor in the final 100 earning at least $50,000, it’s clear that professional gaming can be an incredibly lucrative career for those few who are lucky, talented, and hardworking enough to make it.