Oct 21 2013 - 9:33 pm

How this 23-year-old League of Legends player makes nearly $1M a year

Meet Carlos "Ocelote" Rodriguez, a 23-year-old professional League of Legends player from Spain
Paul Tassi
Dot Esports

Meet Carlos "Ocelote" Rodriguez, a 23-year-old professional League of Legends player from Spain. He's closely identified with European team SK Gaming, where he's been a member since 2010 and currently serves as captain.

Ocelote plays middle lane for SK, a role often deemed the most important in League of Legends, where teams try to shove down defensive towers in three different lanes, the middle being a key focal point.

And he makes an obscene amount of money.

Ocelote was recently interviewed by Spanish newspaper ABC where he spoke candidly about his pay over the past year.

"I do not know if I should say. Well, do me a favor and put it in a way that does not seem arrogant, because really I'm not... because only the merchandising income is half a million euros a year easy. That's like 70 percent of the total, since I have to add my salary I earn in tournaments, the streaming of my games and what I get from personal sponsors. In total I earn between €600,000 and €700,000 annually. But now is the time to save and help the family."

That translates to between $820,000 and $950,000.

Ocelote isn't exactly ordinary. He's been described jokingly as the "David Beckham of eSports," a not entirely inaccurate description. He's built himself into a brand, which allows him to make so much off of merchandise at his online shop. Well-spoken, good-looking, he's a prominent face and voice for eSports and beloved by fans in Europe and around the world.

Still, he and his team SK Gaming hardly dominate the competitive world. They're very good, sure. But in season three of the League of Legends World Championship, they failed to qualify for the world stage, losing to European rivals Gambit Gaming and Evil Geniuses.

Clearly, you don't even need to be the best player or on the best team to make serious money in eSports (though it's worth pointing out that League of Legends is by far the most profitable game in the industry). It takes a strong personal brand and good business sense to maximize on your own popularity. Ocelote seems to have found the perfect balance, where he's able to bring money from merchandising, sponsorship, gameplay streaming, and actual winnings—the last of which probably accounts for the smallest percentage of the total.

For now, Ocelote might be the exception and not the rule. But as eSports continues its extraordinary growth, how long until we see someone who really is making David Beckham-type money?

Screengrab via IntelExtremeMasters/YouTube

Jan 20 2017 - 9:02 pm

The Blood Moon hangs in the sky—and Blood Moon Jhin could be League’s next skin

In an eerie tweet, Riot hints at the next champion in the Blood Moon skin line.
Aaron Mickunas
League of Legends Writer
Images via Riot Games | Remix by William Copus

The latest skin in the League of Legends Blood Moon skin series, Blood Moon Jhin, could be in the works.

Earlier today Riot tweeted out a teaser, in which the crimson moon can be seen through an archway of sorts with Jhin’s gun suspended in the air, making it almost certain that he’s the next champion to receive a Blood Moon skin. The red haze covering the scene really adds to the creepy factor.

The Blood Moon skins have been pretty awesome—even the early iterations of the series like Akali’s Blood Moon skin. The Blood Moon skins are all colored red in some way, and feature demon masks based on “The Red Demon”—a version of Japanese “oni” which is a spirit that brings strife, disease, disasters, and deceit. In addition to Akali, there have been five more skins in the series: Thresh, Yasuo, Kennen, Kalista, and Shen. Jhin’s will hopefully be no exception to that pattern of awesomeness.

If the skin turned out to be a dud the community wouldn’t take it too kindly. Why? Well, two reasons. First of all, the community has been asking for another Jhin skin since his launch in January last year. He has only had the skin he was launched with, High Noon Jhin, since he actually came out. It is a pretty cool skin, but fans want more. If they finally see Jhin get his new skin and it sucks? Well, I’m sure you can imagine how that would go down.

With ADC mains sending death threats to Riot staff over not enjoying ADC gameplay, imagine what they’d do if their favorite champion received a bad skin. And that brings us to the second point. Jhin is one of the favorite ADCs in the game right now.

Jhin sports almost an 18 percent rate of play, which means he is in nearly one-fifth of all ranked games. In the ADC role, there are only three other ADCs that compete with that play rate out of nearly 20 ADC champions: Vayne, Caitlyn, and Ezreal. I know you were expecting me to say “Ziggs,” but Ziggs isn’t played all that much in the bot lane (yet).

Fortunately, Riot’s skins have been very cool lately. Just look at the Worldbreaker skins, and even the new Lunar Revel set. With the track record of those awesome skins and the previous Blood Moon skins, we’re hoping Blood Moon Jhin will be as badass as it deserves to be.

Jan 20 2017 - 1:25 am

Get your Red Envelopes ready—the Lunar Revel event in League starts today

Riot is kicking off the 2017 Lunar Revel with some slick new skins.
Aaron Mickunas
League of Legends Writer
Image via Riot Games

The Lunar New Year is a sacred, historic holiday that is celebrated by nations in the far east. It marks the beginning of the year based on the cycles of the moon. There’s dancing, festivals, parades, but much more importantly: A special League of Legends event. Why is that so important? Because you can get sweet new skins, of course!

The Lunar Revel Event is a yearly occurrence in League that features shiny new goodies to buy in-game. The event was announced and started today, so after you update the client, you’ll be able to take part in the festivities.

1) Free Icon

That’s right, for the small cost of going to the official Lunar Revel web page, you can claim a free Summoner Icon! The interactive home page acts as the hub for the Lunar Revel event, and you can click through the menu to see all the features. There’s even some lore tying each of this year’s Lunar Revel skins to their respective champions.

2) Champion Skins

There are three skins coming out for the Lunar Revel event this year: Garen, Azir, and Vi. Each has a matching Summoner Icon available in the store.

Garen’s sword and rad man-bun make this skin what it is: Awesome. When he spins to win, a green dragon swirls around him. When he ults, the giant sword that falls from the heavens... well, it’s green.

Azir seems to be more of a themed skin specific to this year, as it’s the Year of the Rooster—and Azir is as rooster-like as any League champion gets. His soldiers are also made to match his skin, sporting golden armor.

Vi’s theme is “the green demon” and when she ults, a big green dragon swirls up into the air and slams back into the ground as she does. This one’s our favorite, but mostly because it’s the only time we’re ever going to see Vi in a ponytail.

Not only are those three new skins available now, but past Lunar Revel skins and bundles are in the shop as well.

3) Crafting

A brand new Lunar Revel crafting system will also be in the client until the end of the event. It uses the same crafting page as usual, where you open chests with keys you earn from playing games and combine shards to form skins and champions. You can buy a Revel Red Envelope for 250 RP and visit the crafting page in your client to turn it into a skin shard and one random relic.

The relics come in three types: the Pauldron Relic, the Golden Relic, and the Gauntlet Relic. Once you have all three, you can combine them into Epic Skin Shards (1350 RP skins), random skin permanents, Gemstones, or Hextech Chests and Keys.

4) Merch

Finally, you can visit the Lunar Revel merch store to check out some IRL event goodies. Want a shirt featuring each Chinese Zodiac with League champions instead of the usual animals? Well it’s in the merch store, as well as a collectible figurine of Lunar Revel Azir.

The event is running from now until Feb. 2, so be sure to log into the game and check it out!