Vancouver's Kurtis Ling, 22, says he plays the game Dota 2 with his four teammates, spread over two continents, against other top teams six hours a day, seven days a week, on top of practising on his own and studying opponents' strategy.
"It's exhausting, but for us this is our dream jobs," he said — a job that pays him in the "low six figures" and has taken him on tour to the U.S., Sweden, Germany, Romania and China.
James Lampkin, general manager of the e-sports league ESL, said that 10 years ago a gaming event might attract a few dozen people and a couple of hundred dollars in prize money.
"Now you're seeing events with hundreds of thousands, even millions of dollars in prize money, with tens of thousands of people at venues and tens of millions online."
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