HYDERABAD: Stop worrying about the toxic question from neighbours about – Apka ladka aajkal kya kar raha hai,” and the world will be a better place, say MA Bari Naser Anwar and Ankit Panth. The former is a Hyderabadi boy who is into eSports professionally and the latter, a Khandivili boy, who is also a ‘Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’ champ. The duo says they both had to overcome regular taunts to realise their dreams of playing nationally and also proving it to the world that one can make a living out of this exciting sport. Talking to City Express from the recent ESporting gaming arena held at HICC, they both are batting for giving eSports its due in the gaming arena.
Coming from middle-class families, Ankit had sparse help during the beginning of his journey. He has not only dedicated all his time to gaming, but has also achieved a name for himself in DJing and the fitness industry. “There was a time where people used to see me as a bad influence because I played computer game and they thought that I was just wasting my life and would never earn from this,” he says. “I’m glad to say that I have proved them wrong.”
Also known as ‘V3nombiceps’, V3nom is one of the most loved players of our country and his fan following justifies it. He is known as the face of brutality and is also the founder and director of operations. He has built this organization with passion and love which reflects in the way they work. He strongly believes if you keep people around you happy, they will give their best.
“Just by seeing me sitting at computer, my parents feel as though I am addicted to alcohol, smoking, junk food, and perhaps experience poor eyesight too. Now, it became crucial for me to bust these myths. I started working out so that I am fit and don’t put on weight as my parents thought I would get obese ‘sitting on computer’ as they tend to describe it. Once I started playing well and winning tournaments, top companies such as Intel and AlienWeb appointed me their ambassadors. I also have been representing Red Bull as the athlete. “Till 2025, if I can earn consistently, focussing online, team brutality, founder and captain, I think I will have made it.”
However, newbies should not fall for the prize money as although it is announced as Rs 5 lakh, by the time it reaches you, it shrinks to Rs 60,000 for an effort of three months. But as I played consistently, the efforts have paid off. Today, I sign seven-figure deals, I charge for event appearances, have travelled business class and managed to gift things to my mom. Now when neighbours prod her about ladka kya karta hai, she smiles sheepishly and says, ‘gaming vaming karta hai par acha kamaata hai’. I proved that you can be a successful gamer event without badgering your parents for a Rs 2 lakh hi-end computer. He thinks The Hyderabad eSports scene is kaafi thanda. But Hyderabadi boy MA Bari Naser Anwar, aka ZedisBugg in the gaming arena, a mechanical engineer turned gamer begs to differ.
“This is because parents are ignorant about eSports. The gamers community here is as big as other cities, but Hyderabadi gamers don’t compete in the tournaments and their number looks small. I know a lot of potential gamers who are talented, but choose not to participate in tournaments due to personal reasons. The Hyderabad scene is just as good as any other city in India We need big organisations to establish the eSports teams in Hyderabad and give the local talent the attention they need to shine. Anwar works as an e-sports team manager and has been involved in this industry for the last 15 years. The finalist in the Red Bull River Runes 1v1 event that took place in the city recently, he was also the finalist along with 50 top Indian players who won from their respective regions. I had managed to get in the top eight slots,” he states. That means there is hope for Hyderabad.