GMusawer is a 23-year-old software engineer
Known as Ghost Khan in the gaming community, Musawer is a 23-year-old software engineer from Peshawar and the captain of the Portal Esports Dota2 team. Having won everything there is to be won locally, including Mountain Dew Gamers Arena, he represented Pakistan in the World Electronic Sports Games (WESG) Asian qualifiers in China in 2018. Finishing in the top 10 meant his team qualified for the world final, an event they couldn’t attend due to problems in acquiring visas. Musawer is the first Pakistani to amass 8000 Match Making Rating (MMR) points, doing so in October. Listing down the challenges faced by his team, Musawer was always going to mention visa issues. “My team members were very disheartened to miss WESG finals in 2018. It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us,” he says. He also laments other issues. “There are no Dota2 servers in the region, which causes an extremely high ping. Playing online with South East Asian players is a nightmare because we face lags in gameplay. “One of the reasons we did so well in China was because the matches there were LAN-based. Moreover, there is a skill gap in the local community. While players are improving, the rate needs to increase. I’m the only 8000-MMR player in Pakistan, other countries have multiple players of this calibre. There are even 9000-MMR players in the world now. This gives them a competitive advantage. To combat this, we need to have players of the same skill.” Looking forward, Musawer feels things will improve with time. He points to events such as Mountain Dew Gamers Arena and Telenor GameBird Fest as initiatives which could bring the sport forward. “A lot of people are unwilling to put in their all to achieve success in the gaming arena because of lack of rewards. Tournaments such as these and the formation of Esports teams offer incentives to up-and-coming players. I am determined to play my role in the development of the sport in Pakistan, for which I’ve submitted a proposal to the government,” he says. When asked about any upcoming tournaments, he says that his team had qualified for an international tournament in Macau, but it’s been cancelled due to the pandemic.