US teenager earns record-breaking $3 million after winning Fortnite World Cup finals

  • Rob Swan

Playing computer games for hours on end used to get you called a nerd, now it can make you rich and famous.

eSports has become an increasingly lucrative and competitive industry and is growing in popularity year on year.

The Fortnite World Cup finals took place over the weekend and featured the largest prize pool in the history of eSports, with a whopping $30 million shares among the winners.

Fortnite, a popular online shooter game in case you’ve been living under a rock on Mars for the past couple of years, has 250 million users worldwide.

And a US teenager earned a record-breaking $3 million after becoming Fortnite world champion on Sunday - that’s more than the winners of Wimbledon earned this summer.

Kyle Giersdorf is now a millionaire after winning the solo event of the competition in the Arthur Ashe Stadium in New York - the venue which also hosts the US Open tennis tournament.

The teenager, known online as Bugha, was left laughing and shaking his head as the crowd erupted when his name was announced, BBC News report.

Kyle plans to save more of his prize, adding: "All I want is a new desk and maybe a desk for my trophy.”

Commentators described the final game as a “ridiculous victory lap” as the Fortnite master played with a smile on his face while beating his rivals.

The Fortnite finals saw 100 players battling on giant computer screens. A staggering 40 million players attempted to qualify for the finals over 10 weeks of online competition.

More than 30 nations were represented, with 70 players coming from the United States, 14 from France and 11 from the UK.


One lad from the UK, 15-year-old Jaden Ashman from Essex, pocketed £900,000 after finishing second in the doubles’ event.

The teenager, known as Wolfiez online, won £1.8 million, which he will split with his Dutch gaming partner.

His mum once disapproved of his video game obsession - going so far as to throw out his Xbox and break his headset - but now she’s being treated to a new house and car.


"I'm definitely going to buy a house but I haven't got a clue where. And some Gucci shoes. I might buy a car for my mum too, as she drives a little Fiat 500,” he told the BBC.

"Me and my mum, we clash quite a lot. She didn't understand how it worked, so she thought that I was spending eight hours a day in my room just wasting my time.

"So, now that I've proved to her that I can do stuff, I'm really happy."

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