The Gaming Genius Making Pakistan Proud
There are many people in Pakistan that love gaming. But even though our country has progressed much, we still have a highly male dominated gaming industry. But Sadia Bashir has broken the mold and made everyone question the stereotype of girls not being gamers. She has not just proven her name in gaming but game designing as well.
Pakistan lacks a proper game designing sector in the gaming industry and that has really hindered young aspirational gamers who wish to choose that path in their careers. Sadia has been interested in computers and gaming since she was very young. Since the age of 13, she has been interested in playing and developing games.
“My interest in computers began with video gaming, so I just continued to develop it.”
She has faced the male dominant field and persevered through the tough circumstances such as obvious sexism, biased negative criticism towards her work and a lack of proper educational system for game developers. “Being a female in our society, people generally invest less in girls’ education as compared to boys.”
Even though she faced such difficulties, she came out on top and graduated by getting a full scholarship ride in university. “I started making video games from there. My final-year project was to make a game that helps with cancer treatment by mimicking the action of treatments attacking cancer cells in an affected person’s body.”
After seeing and experiencing the fact that gaming can not only be used for fun but to bring change into the world, she was motivated to help other gamers and developers like her. She created an institution called Pixel Art Academy that teaches game designing and development.
“There is no game design concept in the gaming industry in Pakistan. People have great ideas – but how to turn those into good games is the skill they lack. This is what we teach our students.”
She believes that it is not an actual degree that you need to become a game developer but skills. “We tell people that this can be done by anyone. Whatever your education, even a school student or a housewife can make games.”
Such inspiring and progressive thinking is what landed her in the prestigious list “30 Under 30 of Asia” of Forbes.