In most conventional sports activities, a 30-year-old participant very nicely could also be proper in the midst of their prime. In esports, nevertheless, many gamers at that age, even those with quite a few accolades, have already retired.
For the primary a number of months of 2020, Hiko, a 30-year-old Counter-Strike veteran, appeared as if he was additionally prepared to finish his professional profession. Since being changed on Rogue in 2019, he performed in only a handful of qualifiers whereas he watched his streaming profession fade as nicely.
From Jan. 1 to April 6, Hiko averaged 789 viewers and had in the reduction of his each day stream time to about 4 hours whereas taking off three days per week, in line with Twitch Tracker. But on April 7, the closed beta for VALORANT kicked off and so did Hiko’s resurgence on Twitch. For the just about two months the beta was reside, Hiko averaged practically 8,000 viewers and streamed on daily basis, averaging 9 hours per day.
In an interview with Dot Esports, Hiko mentioned that with out VALORANT, he has no concept what he’d be doing now.
“I used to be teamless in Counter-Strike for a few 12 months and a half, and my stream wasn’t actually at some extent to be sustainable, so I used to be contemplating both looking for a job contained in the business nonetheless or simply type of wait to see what occurs,” Hiko mentioned. “It wasn’t trying good, that’s for positive. I used to be contemplating teaching, I used to be contemplating being a caster or on the analyst desk, so yeah, VALORANT positively turned my life round and I positively wouldn’t be the place I’m at present with out a new sport.”
In addition to the success of his channel, which surpassed 10,000 subscribers on June 11, Hiko will proceed his professional FPS profession by competing in VALORANT under 100 Thieves. But deciding to compete wasn’t a snap determination, in line with Hiko.
The Michigan native thought-about how his streaming profession can be affected by pursuing a professional profession, which is able to possible quickly require journey and hours of off-stream follow. Several gifted gamers, together with Hiko’s former teammate Shroud, have given up promising professional careers for full-time streaming. But Hiko simply couldn’t try this.
“With how fast my stream kind of blew up, even before I joined 100 Thieves, it was definitely a thought in my head to be just like, ‘Why even bother going pro? I might as well be a streamer,’” Hiko mentioned. “But at the end of the day, what drives me as a person is the competition. Once you’ve had the taste of being the best in your region or being on a top team, I feel like streaming doesn’t satisfy that hunger that I have, that desire I have to play professionally and hopefully win championships.”
For Hiko, competing has turn into part of him. Over his practically decade-long CS profession, he’s traveled the world over in hopes of profitable titles. And whether or not it’s CS:GO or VALORANT, Hiko’s objective stays the identical.
“I said it when I signed with 100 Thieves, my goal is to win. My goal is to win championships,” Hiko mentioned. “My number one priority in life is to build a team that has the potential to win and that has the drive and hunger to win.”