If your son was locked away in his bedroom playing computer games for hours on end, you would rightly be worried about his prospects.

But Dan Middleton, better known as DanTDM, has earned a staggering $24.3 million fortune in the past year – all from filming himself playing games online.

The 26-year-old puts footage on YouTube of computer games he is playing while he describes what is happening.

Minecraft was launched in 2009 and is hugely popular with gamers of all ages. Photo / Getty Images
Minecraft was launched in 2009 and is hugely popular with gamers of all ages. Photo / Getty Images

He also passes on tips to his viewers regarding how they can reach higher levels on the game.

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Middleton makes money from advertising on the videos and is classed as a professional "YouTuber". And now he has been named the richest YouTuber in the world for 2017 by Forbes magazine.

The former Tesco supermarket worker, from Aldershot, is watched by more than 16 million people. Generally, if a YouTuber's videos are regularly attracting more than 1000 viewers, they can monetise their channel through advertising.

YouTube gives about 68 per cent of its advertising profits from a video to the YouTuber.

Getting 1000 views is thought to make the YouTuber around $2.17 of revenue.

Middleton, known as DanTDM to his millions of young fans, recently went on a 97-date world tour which included the second fastest-selling show of all time at Sydney Opera House.

The former Northampton University student began his empire during his studies by filming himself playing popular adventure game Pokemon.

His videos now mainly focus on Minecraft – a computer animated game where players build a world out of blocks.

He holds the Guinness World Record for "most views for a dedicated Minecraft video channel".

Middleton married his girlfriend Jemma in 2013 and she also plays Minecraft.

Middleton, known as DanTDM to his millions of young fans, recently went on a 97-date world tour. Photo / Supplied
Middleton, known as DanTDM to his millions of young fans, recently went on a 97-date world tour. Photo / Supplied

He has said in the past that they "spend a lot of time gaming together, and I bounce ideas off her as well". The gamer has spoken about having a "responsibility" to be a good role model for fans of his YouTube page, which was originally intended for five to 10-year-olds.

He said: "It's something I was just not prepared for at all. It's something I've slowly been learning about in the past three or four years. In the past five years YouTube has evolved. Being a YouTuber was not a thing before.

"I know people that make similar content to me who are 30 or 40 years old so I don't think there is an age limit to it at all."

His videos have been watched more than 10 billion times. In January, he was criticised by the London Fire Brigade after posting a video of himself using a blowtorch to burn a children's toy.

Warning parents about the video, the fire brigade said: "This behaviour could easily have had severe consequences. The blowtorch could inflict severe burns instantly if handled carelessly and if hot melted plastic came into contact with a person's skin, it could literally stick to it."

The brigade asked him to take the video down, but it has remained on his page and has received more than 202,000 views.