Alex Garfield began gaming competitively in his early teen years. In 2005, he started Evil Geniuses out of his dorm room, copping the name from a well-known “Quake” and “Counter-Strike” team.

Booting up

Garfield’s parents were supportive of his gaming endeavors—his mother thought it brought out and grew important character traits for his future. 

“You can make a lot of money and have a lot of life experiences professionally gaming, but it should always be balanced with an active lifestyle and finishing school.”

“While I had support from my parents, it was also very important that I finish my college degree,” Garfield says. “Even when the company started to take off when I was a junior, my mother would not get off my back until I got my degree and she was totally right to do that.”

Turning pro

Geoff Robinson, one of Evil Genius’ star gamers, has been playing since 1998, but didn’t really consider gaming as a profession until he won the U.S. National Championship for “StarCraft” in 2007. By 2009, he signed with Evil Geniuses—often shortened to EG.

“It was never actually my plan,” Robinson explains. “It kept opening doors for me. I planned to be an English teacher, but decided to put that part of my life on hold and pursue this.”

Choosing your difficulty

Considering the extent to which the professional gaming community has grown, the path to professional gaming is as alluring ever. Speaking from experience, the EG CEO stresses seeing proper education through, first.

“You can make a lot of money and have a lot of life experiences professionally gaming,” Garfield sums. “But it should always be balanced with an active lifestyle and finishing school.”