While esports has been flourishing in the country over the past few years, it’s been a mostly male-dominated industry, with representatives from the fairer sex few and far between. Things have certainly changed for the better, and spearheading her way to the top is Tan Sok Chen. Also known as ZhenZi, the 28-year-old Penangite has been at the forefront of the esports scene for her university, the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang community, as a Moonton Student Leader.

The postgraduate student from Universiti Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP), who founded her university’s esports club, started her foray into the MLBB scene back in 2017 when her fiancé (then boyfriend) introduced the game to her. It was her first MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) game, and she was hooked despite its difficulty. “It took me about 3 months to learn how MOBAs worked. And there were a lot of toxic players in the game!” she lamented.

Sok Chen and her fiancé at the We Care Charity Program

Fortunately, she didn’t let that stop her and persevered in the game - Sok Chen ended up hitting Mythic rank at her peak! “Nowadays I play with my fiancé when he’s free, my teammates or other club members. I don’t enjoy solo games because there are a lot of noobs out there!” laughed the Penangite.

After getting good at MLBB, she took her interest in the game a step further - by organising tournaments for her university. Sok Chen had experience running events for games in the past when she was a Pirate King Online (an old school MMORPG) player, so it only seemed natural.

These events led to the formation of an esports club in her university in 2019, which became official after a 2-year trial period (the deans wanted to make sure that it wasn’t going to negatively affect the studies of those involved). “Funny story about that - when I started my post-graduate course, I didn’t have enough time to focus on my studies while being busy with esports. Thankfully, I had an understanding supervisor who let me switch to a part-time course!”

The response to the club was good but was also tinged with a little negativity. “A lot of the students complained about why there were so many MLBB events, but not for other games. What they didn’t realize was that UniMAP was filled with MLBB players. We encouraged these complainers to join the club so they could run events on their own but once they found out about the paperwork involved, they said thank you and goodbye!”

UEC Committee 21/22

Organising tournaments isn’t a walk in the park, as some of you might know. There are a lot of factors to consider and logistics involved. Not everybody is up to the task of undertaking such a monumental project. Sok Chen was one such person. Besides planning events, she occasionally took on the role of a team manager and entered a few tournaments as a player.

“As a manager, one of my main responsibilities was to set up scrims. If I didn’t set them, the players wouldn’t train at all.” She recalls a time when she had arranged for her team to play against Orange Lourve, a team from the MLBB Professional League. “We were very excited about the scrim even though we didn’t win.” (They lost 0-3, expectedly)

While she was capable of many roles, Sok Chen found herself most comfortable behind the scenes. This was why she applied for the role of a Moonton Student Leader (MSL) in 2019. MSLs were students from universities around the country who served as bridges between the game developer and their schools. For someone who arranged events for fun, that seemed like a lot of work. Thankfully, she was well compensated with in-game rewards, diamonds and a partial scholarship. “It was a lengthy process to become one! It took 2-3 months, there was a strict screening process with multiple interviews and a case study we had to complete.”

“In the beginning, I felt a lot of pressure being one of the only females in the scene. But as time went on and I met other women, I felt more comfortable,” she admitted. In her experience, the esports scene in Malaysia has been pretty fair to her. “I don’t think I get treated differently because I’m female. However, I feel that people have been friendlier after finding out that I’m a girl. A lot of people are shocked to discover that I’m not a guy!”

At the Intercollege Cyber Challenge

Since then, Sok Chen has had many events under her belt, the most memorable one being the GamePlan Intercollege Cyber Challenge (ICC) MLBB 2019, which was held in conjunction with Comic Fiesta that year - it was the highest tier tournament she helped to execute. However, she refuses to take sole credit for any of them. “Without the support of UniMAP or the recognition of Moonton, I wouldn’t be where I am today.” She highly emphasizes working in and with a team, especially for those looking to follow in her footsteps. 

“Study smart, take every opportunity to learn. Don’t be addicted to anything - be it working or gaming. Take time to rest, push yourself, but don’t force yourself. Don’t be selfish, when you learn something, try to share it with others especially if you work in a team. Learn together. If you work in a team and you learn something and do not share it with them, how can your team grow? Be humble, listen to the opinions of others before you make a decision. Always remember, we are not alone, we do not stand alone. We represent a team.”

She may no longer be a Moonton Student Leader but she’s still actively involved in the MLBB community together with her fiancé. They currently function as community leaders -  people who manage and interact with Facebook and Whatsapp MLBB groups, listen to the feedback and suggestions of the community and share them with Moonton. She also freelances writing event proposals and acts as an advisor to her juniors in the UniMAP esports club.

Cosplaying is a great way to escape from reality

What a ride it has been for the soon-to-be-wed beauty pageant fan - from not knowing what a MOBA was to starting an esports club and marrying the person who introduced her to the game. Sok Chen one day hopes to become a school teacher - the cool one who teaches her students how to play MLBB. “I will contribute to esports for life! Esports is in my blood.”

And if you wonder what she’s up to, you can follow Sok Chen on her Facebook page and stay tuned to eGG Network for more news and interviews with personalities from the esports scene.

“If I wasn’t a streamer, I’d be a Tesla-driving Uber driver,” said Chun Lin, or better known to his fans as VeryTJ (飛常天真) on Facebook Gaming. There was something about driving that fascinated the Taiwanese streamer as it became his go-to answer for a few questions we had throughout the interview. When he wasn’t being serious, his fun and jovial demeanour brought a lot of laughter to the conversation.

“My nickname, ‘Fēi cháng tiānzhēn’ is a reminder myself to not be naive. It’s a name I’ve used for a very long time. However, I am still a naive guy,” he said when asked about his nickname. Based on the success he’s had as a streamer so far, it doesn’t look like he’s as naive as he thinks.

The 33-year-old Facebook Gaming Creator, who has been streaming for many years, worked a lot of different jobs before transitioning into a full-time content creator - his last job being a security guard. When the opportunity came knocking, he accepted without hesitation, said the long term gamer who remembers playing Stone Age Online (the 1999 MMO) as one of his first games. He then transitioned to other games like Lineage and League of Legends as he grew older and it was the former title that helped him kickstart his streaming career.

Being part of the service industry, he felt that he had the skills for the task. “Both jobs require you to connect with people, and since I was good at that, I felt I could be a streamer.” He wasn’t wrong, people instantly noticed how charismatic he was. Unlike streamers who get recognized for raging, it was his positivity that helped him build a fanbase. He attracted folks who enjoyed his jolly vibes. “In the beginning, I had a lot of viewers who told me that I had very positive energy and they encouraged me to go keep streaming.”

“The best part about streaming is when I pull off skilful moves or outplays, emotions are high for me and my viewers, and we get hyped together!” However, the good comes with the bad and it’s not always rosy in chat. “Once in a while, I’ll get passersby who watch me fail and flame me or compare me to other streamers - I hate that!” Fortunately, since switching to Facebook Gaming, he’s been dealing with a more peaceful and less toxic chat.

Some people have even insulted him for his appearance, which has led VeryTJ to turn off his camera for most of his streams on Facebook. Fortunately, he doesn’t need to rely on his looks to keep his audiences’ attention. “When there is no camera, the quality of the stream is not dependent on my looks. Viewers will watch because of the gameplay.”

And it’s no coincidence that gameplay is the main focus of VeryTJ’s stream. The former League of Legends player who switched to Arena of Valor is good at what he does. If he’s so good, why doesn’t he go pro then? We asked and he joked that he felt he was too old to play professionally and he would starve as an esports athlete - apparently, they aren’t paid well enough. Fortunately for him, he has his streaming career and a loyal fanbase to keep him going.

“When I started, the most difficult part was finding out what was special about myself. How was I going to catch the attention of viewers? I had to discover what was my selling point.” Eventually, he discovered he had the knack to make people laugh and the skills to outplay his opponents - which has carried him thus far.

Chun Lin intends to keep streaming for a very long time - until people don’t want to watch him anymore. Then he’d start anew as an Uber driver or launch a talent agency to help streamers grow their career. He wants to help people out with all the knowledge he had to learn on his own - like figuring out how to grow an audience.

“For people who want to start streaming on YouTube or Twitch - as long as your family is rich enough, you can do it,” he said in jest and promptly followed with sincere advice, “if you want to stream, think of it as a hobby. If you stream as a hobby, you’ll be more passionate about it and you can go further. If you do it for income, you will take it as a job, which will negatively affect your stream.”

To his fans, he concluded the interview with a message of thanks, “if there is no them, there is no me.” And though he might not get recognized in public right now, he might be a familiar face in the rearview mirror of a rideshare car you get in next time.

In the meantime, check out VeryTJ live on Facebook Gaming, and stay tuned to eGG Network for more interviews with your favourite Creators!

At first glance, Mita doesn’t look like the kind of person who likes sticking blades into the hearts of her opponents but after spending a few minutes watching her stream, I immediately changed my mind. Despite her cheery and coy demure, Mita doesn’t miss a beat when it comes to slicing up enemies standing in her path to Glory - and yes, we’re talking about Naraka: Bladepoint - a game she’s been streaming almost every day since discovering it this year.

Mita is a unique Facebook Creator. Unlike most of her fellow streamers, she wasn’t a gamer from a very young age. The Taiwanese streamer’s first foray into gaming was in college, where she was introduced to the dancing game, Audition Online. The game’s simplistic and rhythmic controls were enough to kickstart her interest in the hobby. Being able to beat other people in the lobby was a taste of things to come - it awakened a competitive spirit inside her.

Shortly after, Mita was introduced to League of Legends, a game with which she fell in love immediately. The 5v5 Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) checked all the right boxes for her, and she couldn’t stop playing it. Mita would even bring her laptop to work to hop into some games during her free time when she was a cosmetics salesperson at a department store. LoL was her life, so it was fitting that it ignited her streaming career.

“Back then, my friends suggested that I give streaming a try since I was always staying home and playing LoL,” she admitted. Instead of going out to party and have fun like other people her age, she was more of a homebody. With no idea of what to expect, she took her friends’ advice and broadcast her gameplay on Twitch. There weren’t many Taiwanese female streamers playing LoL during that era and with her streaming 8 hours a day, it didn’t take long to build a loyal following.

After finding success as a streamer, Mita turned it into her full-time job by signing with a talent agency and leaving sales behind. Having an agency let her focus on what she enjoyed doing - streaming and playing games - while they handled everything else. It also opened additional opportunities for the streamer, landing her photoshoots, brand deals and more. The fact that she had people to help style, plan videos and write scripts was the icing on the cake.

It’s been a number of years since Mita’s transition to a full-time streamer, and she’s gone through a few changes since then. Instead of only streaming LoL, Mita branched into other games and occasionally treated her audience to live singing performances - the latter being a suggestion by her talent agency as a way for her to stand out from the competition.

The reception to her singing was encouraging, and it gave Mita the confidence to release a number of high-effort music videos, which also demonstrated her acting skills. 

To prove that she can be successful anywhere she wanted, Mita made the decision to switch streaming platforms earlier this year. Leaving her Twitch account behind, she jumped to Facebook where she rebuilt her fanbase. Her most loyal supporters followed her, of course, but it didn’t take long for her to hit the same heights she was capable of. People followed Mita wherever she went.

Speaking of following - Mita mentioned that she is constantly recognized in public, even with a mask on. “One time I went to 7-Eleven with a motorcycle helmet on and a fan noticed me!” While she’s gotten used to the fame, she remains thankful to all her fans. Without them, she wouldn’t be living this dream life. Mita believes her success comes from the way she treats her viewers.

“If you recognize someone who watches your stream many times, the viewer will think ‘oh this streamer remembers me’ and they will come back to watch you,” says Mita, who spent her early days as a streamer welcoming every single viewer to her channel. The fact that she also enjoys making new friends while gaming made the task easy to accomplish.

Mita enjoys streaming because she makes a living doing it and she’s happy that she can make a living as a streamer. This self-fulfilling cycle is what keeps the Facebook Gaming Creator going. However, not everything is perfect in her world - if there’s one thing she dislikes about streaming, it’s dealing with haters and negative people. She’s at a point where she can easily rise above the toxicity, but she struggled with it at the beginning of her career. Another challenge she had to overcome was winning her parents’ support - something Mita accomplished only after she started making a stable income.

Overall she’s had more good experiences than bad, involving her viewers. In fact, Mita’s fondest memories of her career are the online singing sessions with her audience and the parties she would occasionally host for her friends and fans to hang out together in person. Talk about down to earth! It’s not every day you hear about streamers hosting get-togethers for their viewers.

In the future, Mita wants to do more singing and hanging out streams. She’s also considering getting back into LoL (she stopped playing the game after the demise of the Taiwanese league (LMS) and her friends switched to China’s servers). She also wants to upgrade her streaming room and equipment.

We asked her to give some advice to upcoming streamers and she responded, “stream because it’s a hobby, don’t think of it as a way to make money. If you have that attitude to make money instead, you’ll stream with stress, which is not good for the viewers to watch you stressed out - they won’t follow you if your stream is unenjoyable.”

To her loyal fans, she concludes, “thank you for your support even though I don’t stream LoL anymore!” Catch Mita live on her Facebook Page, check out her videos on YouTube and stay tuned to eGG Network for more interviews with your favourite Facebook Gaming Creators!

Chhineneang Leangmeng, better known as Noobie GMK, is one of the biggest Facebook Gaming Creators in Cambodia. Over the past five years, the twenty-four-year-old from Prey Veng province has managed to amass over six hundred thousand followers on the platform and it doesn't look like he's stopping anytime soon. Every time you tune into his channel, you can expect to see a cheerful, jovial boy, having a good time in front of the camera - be it swinging swords in Naraka Bladepoint or driving long distances in Euro Truck Simulator or shooting down opponents in PUBG.

However, things weren't always this peachy for the young Khmer. He had to work hard, in the beginning, to establish a following - back when he was a nobody and was dabbling in content creation for fun. Noobie's foray into the scene started with his YouTube channel, where he shared videos of him playing games with his friends and online acquaintances. "At that time, I only got 1-5 viewers! And they were just from my mates. But day by day, our number of views grew," he recalled.

With his YouTube channel gaining traction, he found opportunities to be part of the esports scene when he organized and casted a Vainglory tournament from his own bedroom. It was from that point onwards when the doors flew open for him and his esports career took off. Since then, he has organized and casted many tournaments for various games, such as Rules of Survival and PUBG (PC and Mobile) for brands like ASUS and Huawei.

However, his time in esports is coming to an end, he admitted during the interview. "My career in esports is almost over because I have a lot outside work (his regular job). But I have noticed that the esports scene in Cambodia has gotten much better recently, and there are many other people who are getting involved in the industry."

A New Leaf

Unlike a lot of streamers we have interviewed in the past, Noobie GMK isn't a full-time content creator. When he's not in front of his computer at home, he's in front of a computer elsewhere, doing his job as an IT security specialist. Thanks to his steady job, he makes good use of his stream income by spending it on people in need. "Since I'm supported through Facebook Stars from fans every month, I always collect those Stars to help those who are weak or needy such as homeless people. Especially every year on my birthday, I buy books and supplies to help schools in rural areas."

His generosity stems from the fact that he grew up in a low-income household, where he went through the struggles of living frugally. "I am not the son of a rich family. My mother was a factory worker and my father was a motorcycle repairman. But they really worked hard for me and I thank them for making me who I am today."

"When I was a child, I was the kid who was disobedient to teachers and my parents, I liked to make my own decisions! But when I grew older, I realized I was actually being a nuisance and after that, I vowed to myself that I will repay them for all the trouble I had caused. Today, I do what I can to alleviate the burden of my family by buying groceries, paying for the car, bills and so on. All I want to do is to see them happy and smiling."

When Noobie was in fourth grade, his cousin, an expert in computers, taught him everything he knew about the subject. This turned out to be a momentous point in the young boy's life as he became fascinated with computers and the world of tech. In tenth grade, he got his first gig writing about tech which led him down the path of gaming, esports, and where he is today. "Games changed my life," is a motto Noobie lives by, and is something that has stayed relevant to him till today.

Like many parents in this part of the world, they found it hard to accept Noobie's decision to game for a career. Streaming wasn't a thing back then (and still isn't widely accepted yet), so it was difficult to garner their support. But after putting in the effort, work and hours, he achieved his goals of being a successful content creator and they are now fully backing him.

Life As A Streamer

Noobie GMK didn't have many people to look up to when he was starting out as a streamer. He didn't have anyone to help or guide him in his circle. He felt like the only one in Cambodia doing it and had to explain to a lot of people what being a streamer meant. However, this obstacle had a silver lining - it allowed Noobie to do what he loved: share information with the public.

While he was already reaching out to people through his tech-focused blog (which he claims was in Alexa's top 10 during its heyday), streaming allowed him to reach out to an even wider audience, especially after he gained recognition through the tournaments he organized. Fun fact, the letters in (Noobie) GMK stand for Game, Meng (part of his name) and Knowledge/Khmer - not to be confused with GMK electronic design GMBH! From the very beginning, he already had a goal to spread knowledge. Since he was the one who was a self-made expert on the topic, he could be the one that people turned to, he helped a lot of people who needed advice about starting a stream and continues to do so.

Though he enjoys how streaming has improved the gaming community in Cambodia, he has some problems with it as well. Noobie dislikes streamers who use inappropriate words on stream and show unscrupulous content to attract attention. He is also tired of the perceptions of gaming being criminal in the country. He's trying to change all that by setting an example. Noobie also makes sure that any sponsorship deals he accepts fall in line with his goals. "Do not demand attention. Find your true fans - that is better than any other traction which won't allow you to grow in the future. As a streamer, we should share and show good things to our fans!"

Noobie is happy with how things are going now - he can fulfil his dreams, has a decent income, and loves what he is doing - but he's not about to rest on his laurels just yet. His current goal is to hit a million Facebook followers within 2022.

"Finally, I would like to thank you for your support from the beginning till today. I am lucky to have and know all of you and I hope you continue to support me like this for the rest of my career."

Tune in to Noobie GMK's streams - every day, 6 PM (GMT+8) onwards on Facebook Gaming and check out his videos on YouTube. For more interviews and features on your favourite Facebook Gaming creators, stay tuned to eGG Network!

If there was one word to describe Hadi “Paroi Studios” Afiq’s live streams, it would probably be energetic. The moment you tune in to one of his shows, you’ll be able to feel it immediately - from Hadi himself, and his legion of fans (affectionately called the “Paroi Army”) in chat. “They are the fuel to my energy, endlessly sending me love and positive feedback, hence I too returned to them the exact same way, with love and positivity!” said the 28-year-old father of two, who pulls no punches when it comes to knocking out entertaining streams on a nightly basis.

Paroi Studios and friends

Though Hadi is now a successful official Facebook Gaming partner, he didn’t get there by chance. The Malaysian streamer chose this career path because, despite his colourful background in various industries like wedding photography and selling fried chicken - they didn’t fulfil a need in his life: the joy he felt from reaching out to, interacting with, and entertaining people. Streaming allowed him to do all that, from the comfort of his own home. Since he already had an outgoing personality, the transition to being on camera wasn’t too challenging.

Before he was a streamer

“When I first started my stream, getting around 30 viewers already made me super happy!” The streamer fondly recalled the early days of his career, when he played games like Hitman, Mortal Kombat, and Days Gone. It was only after the release of MotoGP 19, and him streaming the game religiously, his view count picked up.

The Hype of the Paroi Army

But before the “Paroiarmy” existed, Hadi had his very own fan group - his family. They encouraged him to continue his pursuit of being a full-time streamer, despite its uncertain future. Fortunately, things worked out, and until today, they remain his biggest fans and influences. When we floated the idea of his family becoming streamers in the future, he responded, “I would encourage them as that would mean they share the same passion that I do. As for how I’d boost their careers, I think I will stick to the classic way - stream collabs!”

When he's not in front of the camera, he's sometimes behind it

Since blowing up, Paroi Studios has expanded his gaming catalogue, with titles like GTA V, ARMA 3, Need For Speed Heat, and PES 2020, to spice things up a bit in between bouts of MotoGP 20. He also enjoys titles he can play together with his gaming buddies. But regardless of the games, his loyal fans, whom he treats as his own friends, have remained around to cheer him on. The current lockdown situation in the country has also done wonders for his viewership - so much that he changed his streaming hours to accommodate the influx of new viewers.

Paroi Studios streaming PES 2020

Hadi recalled the moment he reached his highest concurrent view count - he was streaming a game of PES 2020 which suddenly grew to an audience of over 6,000. He wasn't sure what caused the spike, but he didn't let it intimidate him. With all the extra energy to feed off, it was a night to remember. There was also the odd tale of his fans who started the tradition of typing “Bismillah” in chat before every match of PES 2020. Nobody can explain why, but it’s shenanigans like these that Paroi Studios has come to love and embrace. “When it comes to Malaysia VS Indonesia, my viewers will spam comment 🇲🇾 <3 🇮🇩 in chat.” Not a common sight, considering how rowdy fans of real-life football can get!

In case anybody was wondering about his nickname’s origin, “the name is directly influenced by Paroi, Seremban, Negeri Sembilan! Simple as that.” It was also the location where he started his streaming career; no prizes if you guessed correctly!

Speaking about the future, Hadi intends to continue streaming “as long as the industry lives.” He's just thankful that he can make a living doing what he does. He’s also open to exploring avenues such as shoutcasting for Mobile Legends Bang Bang and PUBG Mobile. Considering how natural he sounds on the mic, it comes as no surprise. As for activities outside the realm of computer games, he’d like to get involved with a real-life football club or national motorsport.

But Hadi's not abandoning his streaming career just yet. He concluded the interview with a grateful message to his fans, "I would like to say thank you to all my supporters and fans for all their support. They give me the energy to continue working at my best in this industry. I hope this enormous support continues to fuel my passion for streaming and helps me to grow further. You guys are awesome and I love you! #paroiarmy."

Catch Paroi Studios, live - in virtual stadiums and tracks, racing at high speeds, and scoring impossible goals - on his Facebook Page.

After more than a year of setbacks, ordeals and literal tears, one Facebook Gaming Creator has achieved a milestone that cements his status as a streamer to be taken seriously (ironically, he emphasises on “fun” while streaming).

Celebrating 400k followership on Facebook Gaming (to be exact, 418k as of 22 May), Shibashis “Shiba” Biswas – more popularly known by his page name The Tharki Assassins – was quick to notify this writer the moment he reached an all-new high with his fan base, a testament to the pride he deservedly has for his newfound success. After all, he started streaming with an ancient yet surprisingly functional PC, the kind used in the ‘90s when dial-up Internet and MSN Messenger were common.

Kicking it off old school

“I had 2GB RAM, no graphics card, plus a CRT monitor to work with,” Shiba recalled, explaining that his monitor was a bulky and box-shaped relic of the past. To the Indian streamer’s fortune, he was still able to stream the emulator version of PUBG Mobile when the battle royale game was gaining prominence in the local Facebook Gaming scene, albeit without any audio equipment. Determined to improve his set-up, Shiba bought his first webcam and headphones by saving his lunch money for two months, so he either starved or ate his friends’ leftover food. “That was the beginning of my struggles,” he said with a laugh, the kind where you relive past hardships with a grateful smile.

The famous CRT monitor that Shiba started his streams with.

While waiting to be officiated as a Facebook Gaming partner (more info about the program here) early last year, Shiba’s ancient monitor chose the perfect time to break down and stop working. And to make matters worse, he didn’t have anyone he could borrow a display from. “I thought (my streaming career) was over and cried for days because I couldn’t stream without a monitor.” When all hope was thought to be lost, the unexpected happened.

Fortuitous virtue

According to Shiba’s experience, the majority of the older generation in India remain sceptics of gaming, including his parents who chided him for spending too much time with his hobby. “They even locked the door to my room – which had my PC – when I was playing too much,” the microbiologist graduate recalled, adding that he did well for his academics nonetheless.

Even though Shiba is known for his PUBG Mobile streams, he loves playing other games as well - he's a big fan of Assassin's Creed II, which inspired his game name.

After Shiba’s CRT monitor croaked and the streamer was still wallowing in misery, his father noticed and did something astonishing. “I don’t know what got to my dad, but he suddenly got me a new monitor the next day. It was a strange but huge turning point in my life,” recalled the Assassin’s Creed II fan. “If my dad didn’t buy me a monitor, I wouldn’t have gotten here and pursued other prospects.”

Sport on

Shiba may be a streamer by profession, but he refuses to be defined by a single label. Aside from streaming, the Kolkata-born gamer has been an avid supporter of the local esports scene ever since he started volunteering for video game community functions like GamerConnect during his final years of college. This led to him becoming a reputable influencer in the local esports circle, even organising pop-up events and building relationships with key players in the industry, including NVIDIA and Discord.

Shiba also volunteered at Zone Cafe - the biggest gaming cafe in East India - in its infancy stage.

On top of his full-time streaming career, he serves as Bait Esports’ coach and manager. “I’m focused on managing esports teams to help them grow as players. I groom them to be more professional in their presentation and attitude, and to help them find sponsorships with the connections I have from my volunteering days.” Shiba was also in the midst of preparing a PUBG Mobile bootcamp for budding pro players who wanted to improve their soft skills before the COVID-19 pandemic struck.

Shiba was in Malaysia for the Facebook Gaming Breakaway late last year, celebrating Facebook Gaming partners in the region.


“I want to spread the awareness that gaming can be a good pursuit,” Shiba revealed, explaining his sheer determination in living and breathing video games. “If it makes you happy, you can make something out of it.” As a professional gamer without the support of his mother (his father grew to accept it) – he believes it’s the story of most Indians, both fans and workers, in the gaming industry: parents who scowl at their endeavours.

“Family support is currently the biggest obstacle for pro gamers,” and thus why he’s aiming to change that with his pursuits.

All in good fun

Keeping a fruitful relationship with other Indian streamers.

But, don’t the nobility of his actions fool you – true to his page name The Tharki Assassins (according to him, tharki means “naughty”), Shiba is one mischievous jokester who loves interacting with his viewers while streaming PUBG Mobile, GTA V, Call of Duty, MotoGP and other games. “I like knowing about their days and checking in on them, especially with the lockdown going on.” He sees his fan base as one big family, reflected in the plural implication of his page name. It also used to be the name of his team in producing short films on YouTube before they disbanded; he kept it because it strongly represented his personality.

Despite his barrage of playful jabs on camera, Shiba feels there’s a lot of negativity going around in the world and is combating it with as much positivity as possible. “With COVID-19, I think I have more responsibility now than ever as a streamer,” he confessed, saying that his viewers would try to break away from all the tension in the real world by watching his funny antics.

"My girlfriend keeps me sane in between my busy schedule."

Even though he’s had his fair share of negative comments from some bad apples, he tries his best to empathise and treat them like friends – fortunately, this attitude has been working in his favour, with the naysayers dropping their pitchforks. “We should always be loving and caring to the toxic ones. They may be facing a lot of hardships in their life and didn’t get the love or care they crave, causing them to act this way.”

The present world needs more frontliners and people like Tharki Assassins. To continue his role in battling the COVID-19 global crisis, not only has Shiba contacted local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to carry out fundraiser streams, but he’s also using his online influence to spread true news – plus memes to raise morale – via his postings and streams. “This is the best that I can do for now, but at least I feel like I’m helping the world.”

Check out Shiba's wacky live streams on Facebook Gaming as The Tharki Assassins!

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