When 2014 ended we had an idea of what could be expected for 2015 in terms of prize pool money. The prize pool for The International 4 (Dota 2) broke records for being the largest in eSports (reaching a total of $10,931,103) but it wasn’t until August of 2015 when we realized that Valve was up for a new record reaching a total of $18,429,613 with help from the Dota 2 community.
But 2015 was not all about Dota 2, during 2015 we finally got to see the Counter-Strike scene resurrect and reach a total prize pool of over 6 million dollars (distributed between 311 events), making CS:GO one of the top five eSports (by earnings) of all time.
With over 30 million dollars distributed between 217 Dota 2 tournaments, 7.6 Million dollars on League of Legends and over 3.6 Million dollars on Smite, we bring you the top 10 eSports teams of 2015 (based on their earnings).
- Cloud9 – $1,469,200.93 earned on 136 Tournaments
Cloud9 has multiple eSport teams, covering almost every game category.
During 2015 the team had a disappointing run at The International 5 finishing 9-12th earning only $221,155 from this event.
Their Heroes of the Storm team became the world champions at Blizzcon and claimed $200,000.
Their organization also won some of the prize pool for tournaments in games like CS:GO, Smite, Smash Bros and even Halo granting them the 10th position on this ranking.
- SK Telecom T1 – $1,531,484.02 earned on 30 Tournaments
SK Telecom T1 had an amazing year in South Korea, and became the winner of the 2015 World Championship after a convincing run against KOO Tigers, winning 3 to 1.
They also had an great run on StarCraft II winning $42,400 at the 2015 SK Telecom Proleague.
- EHOME – $1,627,431.11 earned on 9 Tournaments
The Asian Dota 2 team started the year with some disappointing performances, but during The International 5 placed 5-6th claiming a prize pool of $1,197,925 and continued cashing in by ending 4th on The Frankfurt Major, if you add up the smaller tournaments in which they participated you end up with over $1.5 million.
- COGnitive Gaming – $1,768,958.39 earned on 81 Tournaments
We can consider them the most successful SMITE organization of 2015. COGnitive had two teams participating in the Smite World Championship and managed to take the first place with their team COGnitive Prime for $1,306,130 and the third place with their team COGnitive Red for $391,839.
Their Super Smash Bros team participated in multiple tournaments and won over $30,000.
- Virtus.pro – $2,156,185.40 earned on 66 Tournaments
Virtus.Pro is a team known to many, their CS:GO roaster was considered one of the top teams in the world during 2015 and their Dota 2 team was not far from that title.
It was a great year for Virtus.Pro and their Dota 2 roaster, the team started the year by getting the 2nd place at D2L Season 5 and continued it by going to The International 5 and claiming $1,197,925 from the pot (thanks to their 5-6th place).
Their Dota 2 roaster contributed to over 1.6 million of their total prize pool, but it was thanks to their CS:GO team that they got closer to that 2 million mark.
- Team Secret – $2,231,114.09 earned on 14 Tournaments
Secret started the year winning almost every tournament they had the chance to participate on and earned well over $600,000 from “smaller” tournaments and well over 1,5 million from Valve’s events (2nd at Frankfurt Major, 3rd at DAC and 7th at The International 5).
- Vici Gaming – $2,624,702.23 earned on 31 Tournaments
Vici Gaming started the year by getting 2nd place at DAC (earning them $366,902) and later on got 4th place at The International 5, all this (on top of their winnings from smaller tournaments) netted them 2.6 million dollars.
- LGD Gaming – $3,226,494.03 earned on 21 Tournaments
LGD Gaming is known for both their League of Legends team as well as their Dota 2 team.
Their LoL team contributed a total of $246,354 to their prize pool, and their Dota 2 team closed the year with a total of $2,980,140 (after ending 3rd at The International 5 and winning some smaller tournaments).
- CDEC Gaming – $3,237,318.78 earned on 13 Tournaments
The team that went to The International 5 as the underdogs (starting as a wildcard invite) and working their way to the finals, the team that managed to get 2nd place after an incredible run and ended with $2,856,590 from the prize pool pot.
- Evil Geniuses – $8,952,675.05 earned on 91 Tournaments
Evil Geniuses had an incredible year. After the addition of Syed Sumail “Suma1L” Hassan to their Dota 2 roaster, the team went to China to participate on the Dota 2 Asian Championship (DAC 2015) and got their first title and $1,284,158. They followed that with a second Valve title after winning The International 5 and claiming the biggest eSports prize pool until this date – a whopping $6,634,661.
But it wasn’t only their Dota 2 roaster, they also had an amazing year with their fighting games roaster, as well as their Halo, Call of Duty and StarCraft II representation.
With the implementation of majors on Dota 2, the first american major for CS:GO and the numerous tournaments already announced, we’re excited to see who wins big in 2016.