You don’t need to be a superstar to be a professional player. Anyone can make it through hardwork and dedication.
My name is Marky ‘MarkyB’ Bryceland and I’ve got to the top the hard way. During my streams I’m consistently asked how I became a pro player. I know it’s a common question asked to my colleagues and other pro friends, so I’ve teamed up with Dexerto to bring you this guide.
Below I’m going to talk through 10 different ways that you can help yourself reach the top. This list won’t include some of the obvious advice which is to play consistently and to be good at the game.
Everyone gets to the top in a slightly different way, but hopefully this helps as some form of guidance. If you have any other recommendations please Tweet me @MarkyB.
1. Get yourself noticed by performing well in any competitive scenario.
If you ask almost any professional player, it’s likely that they have climbed through the ranks by playing in competitive tournaments. This isn’t like League of Legends or Overwatch where you might get noticed in a public match.
Playing Gamebattles, scrims, wagers and tournaments is the only way you’re going to get recognised by players who will want to team with you. You’re also going to have to accept that top teams are unlikely to pick you up unless you’ve proved yourself both online and at events.
2. Understand You’ll Receive Criticism.
The world of professional gaming is a tough environment to be part of and that starts from the very beginning. You need to understand early on that you’re going to receive criticsm from other players and that you’re going to get roasted for being a new player trying to break through.
Every single part of your gameplay will be questioned, scrutinised and potentially laughed at by people you may once have looked up to. I know this myself from my time in lower tier teams, but it made me have a tougher mentality when shit started to hit the fan.
3. You Need To Have A Bit Of Character
In my experience unless you have got insane talent, then you’re going to struggle to get noticed if you’re a silent player. I know a lot people who’ve made their break by making themselves known by becoming friends with a pro player and getting recommended.
One thing that’s important to remember is that you don’t overstep the fanboy line, because you won’t get respected. Don’t act like a 13 year old girl at a Justin Bieber concert because Scump joins your lobby.
4. Don’t Get Fixated On Joining An Organisation.
A common mistake by young players is getting fixated on joining an organisation. Whilst it’s understandable that you want to represent a brand and be part of something, it’s not going to make you any better as a player.
Realistically that organisation isn’t going to be able to give you anything if you’re just up and coming, so you have to question what the benefit of joining would be. Players won’t give you a breakthrough because you’ve played for an organisation before, it’s just not how it works.
5. Be Careful About What You Sign.
Leading on from joining an organisation when you don’t need to, you need to be careful what contracts you will be asked to sign. Whilst most will have good intentions, you don’t want your career to be stopped because you signed a year contract with someone that doesn’t benefit you.
Even if you’re joining the biggest and best organisation in the entire world, make sure someone who knows what the legal terms and conditions means reads over it and explains what is what. Don’t get stung.
6. Expect To Pay Out Of Your Own Pocket.
The unfortunate reality is that almost every professional player has had to pay out of their own pocket in order to attend events. In an ideal world your equipment, travel, hotel and expenses at events would get paid for, but until you’re close to the top, you’re going to need to work out a way to pay your way.
7. Be Determined.
One of the main attributes you need is to be determined. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve been dropped, players have snaked, I’ve lost important tournament moments or something has just not gone my way.
The life of a professional gamer is filled with disappointment because you’re constantly competing to be the best with other people who will do whatever it takes.
You need to have a mental toughness to know that you’ll make it out of the other side. That’s what people don’t appreciate about being a pro player, it’s not all singing and dancing.
8. Focus On Individual Improvement.
As mentioned above, you’re going to get criticsm and you’re going to be told you’re doing something wrong as you develop as a player. A key component to making sure you grow as a player is down to your own personal development.
You should be always looking back at your gameplay via theatre and working out what you could have done better or what you could have done in that scenario. It’s a habit that I know a lot of pro players do naturally, because you should want that drive in order to improve and be better.
9. Watch Pro Players.
Another way to improve is to watch the streams and footage of the top players in the world. When watching you should be looking at how they move, communicate and their general mentality, because that will give you an indication of what is required to make it at the top.
10. Careful Of Burnout.
My final tip to becoming a professional players is making sure you don’t destroy your body and mind by playing 18 hours per day.
I’m an advocate that you need to play Call of Duty a lot in order to be successful, but if you play so much that you’re not getting sleep, eating well and you become burned out, then you’re not going to improve. There is plenty of studies online that will give you a rough guide on how long is appropriate to play for.