Here are the top five women in eSports
In the world of Esports, there is a sad shortage of female players compared to the plethora of male players and gaming celebrities we see in the industry. But as viewership of Esports tournaments bounces up, as seen in the last few years from an audience of 8.4 million, to the more recent viewership of over 70 million people, the number of women getting involved and enjoying the competition has increased as well. According to Polygon, despite marketing mostly to the main demographic of male gamers in their 20s, the female audience has more than doubled. With more interest generated among women towards this industry than ever, it’s time to take a look at a few of the top earning, and highest ranked female professional gamers that the world of Esports has to offer:
Sasha “Scarlett” Hostyn
Sasha Hostyn, under the player ID of “Scarlett,” is a transgender Canadian professional gamer from Kingston, Ontario who has rocked the e-sports world in Starcraft II competitions and has won over $114,000 in cash prizes across 59 tournaments. she first gained attention during a 2012 competition in Las Vegas, after overcoming several top-ranking players. According to the New Yorker, she is the most accomplished woman in Esports; Polygon said she is “one of the few women succeeding at the top level of the StarCraft 2 pro scene”. Earlier this year, Hostyn made the shift from Starcraft II to Dota 2, and fans are excited to where this route will take her.
Christine “potter” Chi
Christine Chi is the top earning Counter-Strike Esports gamer, with over $18,000 of winnings across 11 tournaments. She’s a five-time world champion amongst Counter-Strike players. In 2011, she won a $2,400 prize for first place in the Electronic Sports World Cup, a ranking she has received six times. She is known far and wide under the username “potter.”
Marjorie “Kasumi Chan” Bartell
Marjorie Bartell was a breakthrough name in the world of Esports after her massive win over Sarah Harrison in the Championship Gaming Series Dead or Alive tournament. In under a year, she won over $55,000, making her the the Dead or Alive player with the highest winnings. Despite having few wins under her belt, she has been propelled towards the top of the list of highest-earning Esports gamers. She chose the username and player ID of Kasumi-Chan, after a character from the Dead or Alive series.
Katherine “Mystik” Gunn
Katherine Gunn (under the username of “Mystik”), with over $120,000 in winnings throughout her career, is the single highest-earning female Esports gamer. Despite making massive earnings in Dead or Alive, her largest winnings come from the WCG Ultimate Gamer Championship in Halo:Reach, where she took home the first-place prize of $100,000. To this day, it’s the largest win taken home by a female professional gamer.
According to thriveWire, Stephanie Harvey joined CheckSix Divas, the best competitive female team at the time, only two years after starting to play Counter-Strike, and helped them take home fifth place in the Electronic Sports World Cup. Since then, she’s gone on to make $16,775.61 From 11 Tournaments. Harvey is the co-founder of Misscliks, an online safe space for female gamers. In an interview with thriveWire, Harvey spoke of discrimination she faced in the world of gaming: “It’s only going to get better over time because it’s not as crazy to see girls at games,” she says. “Over time, people will get tired of insulting girls because they’re girls. But it still happens to me every day.” Her love of games doesn’t stop at just playing them — after studying game design, she started work as a game designer for Ubisoft, a company which has since sponsored her in the 2011 and 2012 Electronic Sports World Cup.