Video games have come a long way since their start, and they have grown and gotten better as well as more popular, there were fortunes to be made in the industry. The industry was estimated to make over $93 billion in revenue in 2013 and is expected to grow to $111 billion by 2015. We know this list is not complete, through our research we found that there are many wealthy people tied in to the gaming industry that have kept their finances fairly private. For example, we were not able to locate a net worth figure for Richard Garriott who created the Ultima video games, but it is reported that he flew to the International Space Station in 2008 for 12 days paying $30 million. Don Mattrick, the CEO of Zynga was another person’s net worth we were unable to locate a calculated number for, but the company’s board approved a pay package worth $57,814,391 for him this year. With that caveat, check out the 10 richest people in the gaming industry!
10/9. Sam and Dan Houser – $80 million each. The two brothers founded Rockstar games back in 1998 and are well known for the Grand Theft Auto series of video games. Their most recent release, Grand Theft Auto V has sold over 34 million copies.
8. Mark Pincus – $425 million. Mark Pincus is the mastermind and founder of the gaming company Zynga, Inc. Zynga provides games for mobile devices and social networking like Facebook, among its portfolio of games is the popular Facebook game Farmville.
7. Frank Pearce – $1 billion. Frank Pearce is one of the founders of Blizzard Entertainment, he is executive producer of World of Warcraft as well as Starcraft II. The popularity of Blizzard’s games including World of Warcraft which is now almost 10 years old at the time of writing has certainly helped his fortunes.
5. Hajime Satomi – $1.1 billion. Hajime Satomi founded Sammy Corporation which manufactures machines for pachinko and pachislot games, pachinko and pachislot are popular gambling machines played in Japan. In 2004, he bought out the ailing videogame maker Sega Corporation for $394 million and he now heads the combined Sega Sammy holdings.
4. Gabe Newell – $1.5 billion. Newell like Bill gates dropped out of Harvard University to work at Microsoft Corporation. He spent thirteen years with Microsoft and left Microsoft to found Valve Corporation. Valve Corporation and Gabe Newell are behind such hits like Half-Life, Counterstrike, Portal, and Left 4 Dead.
3. Yoshikazu Tanaka – $1.9 billion. Tanaka started Gree,which has a social networking aspect a well as a mobile gaming aspect. Behind mobile games such as Crime City, Modern War, and War of Nations, Tanaka has done quite well for himself. Although at one point investors poured into the stock of Gree making his stake in the company worth at about $4 billion, they pulled back a bit and now his worth is listed at around $1.9 billion.
3. Mike Morhaime – $1.8 Billion. Another founder of Blizzard Entertainment, he is currently president of the company.
2. Bobby Kotick – $2 billion. Bobby Kotick has been CEO of Activision and now Activision Blizzard since 1991. His career started with him building software for the Apple II. He is also a member of the Board of Directors for Coca-Cola.
1. Hiroshi Yamauchi – $2.1 billion. Mr. Yamauchi passed away on September 19, 2013, but his worth was estimated around $2.1 billion as of April 2013. Yamauchi inherited a company called Nintendo when his grandfather suffered a stroke in 1947. At the time it was a card company, creating playing cards, he went on to try different ventures, some successful, some not so much, including a taxi service, selling food, and a love hotel chain. We all know what a powerhouse Nintendo has become since that time and that is how Mr. Yamauchi accumulated his net worth.