The gaming industry is growing by leaps and bounds every day. If you always thought that video games were children’s play, think again. Worldwide, there are video game competitions held every year involving big sponsors and incredible prize money. This industry is known as electronic sports or esports.
The global esports industry had an estimated market size of $1.1 billion in 2021. And it is expected to grow another 45% by 2024. Games like League of Legends and Overwatch are expected to have massive growth in their direct revenues. This growth is mostly going to be from ticket sales, merchandise sales, brand associations, and advertisements.
The growth and popularity of the esports industry have increased the popularity of esports influencers as well. Because of their expertise and success in the gaming industry, these influencers have huge numbers of followers on social media.
While Twitter seems to be the most popular social media platform for them, Twitch is where their gaming action is. In this article, and ranked in no particular order, we’ll take a look at the top 41 esports influencers you should know about in 2021.
Top 41 Esports Influencers You Should Know:
- #1. Peter Dager
- #2. Rick Fox
- #3. Matthew Piper
- #4. Revitalize
- #5. Artour Babaev
- #6. Harrison Chang
- #7. Saahil Arora
- #8. Darren Rovell
- #9. Lasse Aukusti Urpalainen
- #10. Manny Anekal
- #11. Clinton Loomis
- #12. Jacob Wolf
- #13. KezBrown
- #14. KuroKy
- #15. Duncan Shields
- #16. Clement Ivanov
- #17. Mike Rufail
- #18. Johan Sundstein
- #19. Travis Gafford
- #20. Resolut1on
- #21. Jesse Vainikka
- #22. Sébastien Debs
- #23. Topias Taavitsainen
- #24. Xu Linsen
- #25. Roman Kushnarev
- #26. Gabriel Toledo
- #27. Turner Tenney
- #28. Sasha Hostyn
- #29. Anathan Pham
- #30. Amer Al-Barkawi
- #31. Ivan Ivanov
- #32. Maroun Merhej
- #33. Sumail Hassan
- #34. Kyle Giersdorf
- #35. Lu Yao
- #36. Gustav Magnusson
- #37. Ludwig Wåhlberg
- #38. Tal Aizik
- #39. Andreas Højsleth
- #40. Peter Rasmussen
- #41. HIRO
#1. Peter Dager
Peter Dager, popularly known as ppd, is a professional Dota 2 player and a popular esports influencer. He was also the CEO of Evil Geniuses at one time.
#2. Rick Fox
Rick Fox, also known as Ulrich Alexander Fox, is an extremely popular esports influencer. The Canadian-Bahamian businessman is not only an actor in films and television but also a retired basketball player.
He has played in the NBA for the Los Angeles Lakers and the Boston Celtics. He also used to play college basketball for the North Carolina Tar Heels.
He is the owner of Echo Fox, a premier esports franchise. Apart from this, he’s also a partner at Vision Venture Partners, a private equity firm that’s now moving into professional esports. He also provides strategic guidance and other support to Vision Venture Partners’ portfolio companies too.
#3. Matthew Piper
Matthew Piper, popularly known as FormaL, is a popular esports influencer. He currently plays for Optic Gaming and is a Call of Duty Champion. He earned £212,000 for winning the Call of Duty championship in 2017. He has more than 76K active followers on Instagram.
Revitalize is an extremely popular Twitter sensation and esports influencer from Australia. He has about 33K followers on Twitter and has an impressive esports portfolio. He is an editor and has worked on multiple projects for OpTic.
#5. Artour Babaev
Artour Babaev better known as Arteezy is a professional Dota 2 player from Canada. He plays for Evil Geniuses. He is extremely popular on Instagram, where he has more than 219K followers. He also has over 654K followers on Twitter.
#6. Harrison Chang
Harrison Chang, also known as psalm, is an American Fortnite player. He has earned over $1.9 million in 2019 from just 39 tournaments. Apart from Fortnite, he also plays Heroes of the Storm and has 76K followers on Twitter.
#7. Saahil Arora
Saahil Arora, popularly known as UNiVeRsE, is an esports influencer and a professional Dota 2 player from the US. Saahil’s combined earnings of $3M make him one of the highest-earning esports players.
#8. Darren Rovell
Darren Rovell is a sports business analyst and a reporter on ESPN Sports. He is also a very popular esports influencer and has over 2 million followers on Twitter.
He graduated from Northwestern University and is a member of their advisory board for sports administration. He has also won an Emmy award for his 2008 Election coverage on NBC.
He has more than 49K followers on Instagram.
#9. Lasse Aukusti Urpalainen
Lasse Aukusti Urpalainen, better known as MATUMBAMAN, is a professional Dota 2 player from Finland. He currently plays for TeamLiquid. His total earnings at 2021are $3.7M from 79 tournaments.
#10. Manny Anekal
Manny Anekal is a popular esports influencer. He owns multiple companies in the esports space and has more than ten years of experience in gaming and marketing.
He started with Massive Inc., which was later acquired by Microsoft Xbox. He then worked in a bunch of roles in companies like Zynga, Electronic Arts, Kiip, and Major League Gaming.
He has more than 6,544 followers on Twitter.
#11. Clinton Loomis
Clinton Loomis, popularly known as Fear, is a professional Dota 2 player from the US. He is one of the oldest Dota players.
#12. Jacob Wolf
Jacob Wolf is an American esports journalist at ESPN and a popular esports influencer. He lives in Bristol, Connecticut. He is also the co-host of the ESPN esports podcast.
Before being associated with ESPN, he used to work for Daily Dot as a staff writer. He also used to contribute to Esports Heaven and Score Esports.
He is regarded as one of the best investigative journalists in esports. He is well known across Super Smash Bros, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, and League of Legends.
He has more than 86K followers on Twitter.
KezBrown, also known as Kieran Brown, is a popular FIFA player and an esports influencer from Manchester City.
Salehi Takhasomi, or KuroKy, is a popular esports influencer and a Dota 2 professional from Berlin. He was earlier part of TeamLiquid but has recently joined the team, Nigma. His total earnings are $5.2million, making him one of the highest-earning esports professionals.
He has more than 248K followers on his Twitter account.
#15. Duncan Shields
Duncan Shields, popularly known as Thorin, is an esports journalist from the United Kingdom. He is a popular esports influencer, and is known as “The Esports historian.” He specializes in Quake, Counter-Strike, League Of Legends, Overwatch, and StarCraft.
Duncan writes exclusively for DOT esports. He shares his perspective on esports in a video series called “Thorin's Thoughts.” His YouTube channel has over 264K subscribers. He is also the host of “OverSight” and “Counter-Points.”
He has over 232K followers on his Twitter account.
#16. Clement Ivanov
#17. Mike Rufail
He has more than 154K followers on Twitter.
#18. Johan Sundstein
Johan Sundstein, popularly known as N0tail, is a Danish professional Dota 2 player. He is part of esports team OG.
#19. Travis Gafford
Travis Gafford is an esports veteran and influencer from California. He is a reporter and independent content creator. He covers gaming events and also produces videos on his YouTube channel, which has 207K subscribers.
Roman Fominok, also known as Resolut1on, is a Ukrainian professional Dota 2 player. He belongs to esports team RedBull OG.
#21. Jesse Vainikka
He plays for the team, OG that has consecutively won two The International: Dota 2 Championships, for 2018 and 2019. He is often seen promoting his sponsor brand, Red Bull, in his social media posts.
#22. Sébastien Debs
He is a French Dota 2 player who is also on team OG, which won two The International championships. This makes him one of the most popular esports influencers.
#23. Topias Taavitsainen
He is a Finnish Dota 2 player who also plays for the team OG. He has 102k followers on Twitter and 118K on Instagram. He has his own website and blog as well.
#24. Xu Linsen
Xu is a Chinese Dota 2 player who is a member of the team, LGD Gaming. His team came third in The International 2019, Dota 2 championship.
#25. Roman Kushnarev
#26. Gabriel Toledo
He is a popular Counter-Strike: Global Offensive player from Brazil. He also owns the eSports company, Games Academy. His total earnings from 130 CS tournaments are $1.1 million.
He is massively popular on social media with 1.1M followers on Twitter, 959k on Instagram, and 1.32M on YouTube. This makes him one of the top esports influencers. Owing to his popularity, he gets numerous brand collaborations.
#27. Turner Tenney
He is an American Twitch streamer and Fortnite player with cumulative earnings of $6M from 68 different tournaments.
He streams his gaming performances on YouTube as well and has a subscriber base of 12M. He has 4.2M followers on Twitter and 4.9M on Instagram. This makes him one of the most popular esports influencers in the world.
#28. Sasha Hostyn
Most lists for esports influencers are almost exclusively filled with male players. So, we thought we should include the top female players as well.
Sasha is a Canadian StarCraft II player, who is popularly known as Scarlett. She has 39.6k followers on Twitter and gets millions of views on her Twitch streams. She is also the highest-earning female esports player with a total earning of $401K.
#29. Anathan Pham
He is one of the highest-earning esports players with a total earning of $6 million from 24 tournaments. He is an Australian Dota 2 Player who plays for the team OG.
#30. Amer Al-Barkawi
He is a Dota 2 player from Jordan who has earned $4.8M from 70 tournaments. He is popularly known as Miracle and though he is not very active on social media, he has a huge fan base. He has 23K followers on Instagram.
#31. Ivan Ivanov
He is a Bulgarian Dota 2 player with cumulative earnings of $4.6 million from 79 tournaments. He plays for the team Nigma, which was formed by 7 of the most popular Dota 2 champions.
He is also active on Twitter, where he has over 76K followers.
#32. Maroun Merhej
He is one of the seven top Dota 2 players who recently formed the team, Nigma. He is from Lebanon and, so far, has earned $4.2 million from 58 tournaments.
#33. Sumail Hassan
He is a Pakistani Dota 2 player who currently plays for OG, but was earlier a member of Evil Geniuses. His total earnings are $3.6 million from 73 tournaments. He is active on Twitter, with a follower count of 237K. Just like other members of the team, he also promotes the Red Bull brand that sponsors the team.
#34. Kyle Giersdorf
He is an American Fortnite player with total earnings of $3.1 million from 48 tournaments. When it comes to top esports influencers, the list is usually dominated by Dota 2 players.
Kyle is one of the most popular Fortnite players who can compete with the Dota 2 players both in terms of earnings and popularity. He has a massive Twitter following of 803K. That’s not all. He has a whopping 3 million followers on Instagram as well.
#35. Lu Yao
He is a Chinese Dota 2 player with the highest cumulative earnings of an esports player in his country. He has total earnings of $3 million from 74 tournaments. He is popular among his fans by the nickname Maybe and plays for the team PSG.LGD.
#36. Gustav Magnusson
He is a popular Swedish Dota 2 player, who earlier used to play Heroes of Newerth and also plays Counter-Strike: Global Offensive sometimes. His cumulative earnings from 133 tournaments are $2.57 million.
He is popularly known as s4 and is a member of the team called Alliance. He has been a part of other prestigious teams like OG and Evil Geniuses in the past.
#37. Ludwig Wåhlberg
He is another popular Dota 2 player from Sweden, with cumulative earnings of $2.5 million from 105 esports tournaments. He is popular by the name ZAI and is a member of the Team Secret.
Though he has not won many championships, he is still quite popular and has a follower base of 138K on Twitter.
#38. Tal Aizik
Tal is probably the only esports player from Israel who has made it to this list of top esports influencers. With total earnings of $2.45million from 122 tournaments, he definitely deserves to be here. He is also the captain of the team, Evil Geniuses.
He is a Dota 2 player who is popular by the nickname Fly. Since joining Twitter in December 2019 he has gained a following of 66K. He has over 66K followers on Instagram and he is often seen promoting brands on his channel.
#39. Andreas Højsleth
He is a Counter-Strike: Global Offensive player from Denmark and is popularly known by his alias, Xyp9x.
He plays for the team Astralis and has won several tournaments for the game. These include Intel Grand Slam Season 1 in 2018, ELEAGUE CS:GO Premier 2018, ELEAGUE CS:GO Premier 2018, and more.
#40. Peter Rasmussen
He is a Danish Counter-Strike: Global Offensive player with total earnings of $1.9 million from 159 tournaments. He is also a part of the team, Astralis, which has won several major CS championships.
H I R O is a popular esports influencer and gamer from Barcelona, Spain. He has over 16,600 followers on his Twitter account, and appears regularly on Twitch TV with live gaming action.
He also has more than 1.7K followers on YouTube.
These are some of the most popular esports influencers that you can collaborate with to reach gaming enthusiasts. Some of them are gamers while others are involved in the esports community in other ways. Regardless, they all have substantial influence on their audiences.
So, the next time you are looking for influencers in the gaming or esports industry, check out this list first.