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PUBG Mobile: The Women Who Shape The Future Of Esports

In recent years, the gaming industry in Malaysia and the world of esports has experienced a rise with over 14 million gamers recorded nationwide and growing. While traditionally dominated by male players, there has been a noticeable shift towards diversity within the industry. According to a report by Gitnux, the percentage of female gamers in Malaysia increased from 37% in 2019 to 38% in 2020.

Women are not only making their mark as players but are also carving out significant roles in running esports and gaming organisations, game development, and various other aspects of the industry. With March celebrating Women’s History Month, we’ll explore the contributions and experiences of women who are making their mark in PUBG MOBILE.

As many already know, the gaming industry was a very male-dominated space and anyone who wasn’t male was looked down upon. Ivana Coelho (above), Social Media and Community Manager of PUBG MOBILE Malaysia, recounts the early days of her career.

“As a woman navigating the gaming industry, I initially encountered the condescending behaviours of my male peers. However, I’m delighted to share that I’ve since found myself surrounded by cooperative and supportive colleagues who value diversity and collaboration. If you’re facing negativity because you’re different, remember, you can create the team you dream of,” Coelho said

Another colleague of hers, Ashley Phuah (below), Senior Business Development Manager, has met all types of personalities through her work. With her job being to grow the business through diverse brand partnerships, she has faced no shortage of judgment for being a female.

“Sometimes, it’s best to just let your work show itself and just do your best. Fortunately, I’ve been blessed with a supportive team, which helps a lot as well. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, what I can control is my performance, style and mannerisms to prove any doubters. At the same time, I hope my personality and work ethic can rub off on my teammates as well to ensure a higher standard among my team,” said Phuah.

True to her word, she was able to grow the PUBG MOBILE Malaysia brand with numerous partnerships throughout such as their collaboration with Mechamato and BoBoiBoy, popular Malaysian animated shows, Polis Evo 3, KL Gangster and many more.

As the brand grows, its Esports scene becomes bigger and there is no doubt that they are present in Malaysia. Our country hosted last year’s PUBG MOBILE Super League (PMSL) SEA Fall tournament which garnered thousands of fans to turn up to witness the grand finals on-ground. The tournaments are high-stakes but high-scale events as well with lots of planning, coordination and communication.

This is where Maevelyn Chan (below) comes in. As the Assistant Esports Manager, Maevelyn coordinates PUBG MOBILE tournaments, manages team communications, and oversees league operations.

In contrast to her colleagues, she hasn’t encountered gender biases in her workplace, particularly since she primarily operates on the ground. During the peak season, she hasn’t encountered any judgment based on her gender. She perceives being a woman as a positive aspect of her experience. “Being a woman in the gaming industry can be advantageous as it facilitates smoother interactions and stronger relationships with the crew, players and other stakeholders. My style of approach compliments the team and ensures seamless collaboration in my work,” Chan said.

Both esports and brand collaborations share a common aspect, which is the eye-catching visuals. This is where Lim Yee Teng (below) shines as a graphic designer where she puts the “face” to the brand and the game with her visual designs. In her 8 years of working, she has been fortunate enough to not experience any gender biases.

“In the design industry, there’s a growing recognition of the unique strengths that women designers bring to the table. Many employers now prioritise hiring women designers, appreciating their ability to infuse care and meticulous attention to detail into every project. I’m proud to be a woman making my mark with a focus on strong visuals. We bring unique perspectives and can excel in any design role,” Lim said.

Driven by passion and perseverance, these women have climbed the ranks through dedication and skill, but their journey doesn’t end here. As the gaming industry continues to expand, they advocate for inclusivity, striving to create a future where diversity thrives and opportunities abound for all. “Just take a leap of faith and if you’re still afraid, reach out to other women in the industry who can share their experiences and some guidance for you,” Ashley Phuah said.

This is a feature post brought to you in collaboration with PUBG Mobile.

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