For a schoolgirl, Mona Majid Al Laheq has come a long way. The female face of PlayStation in the Middle East talks about her foray into the gaming community and giving female gamers a voice.
Eighteen year-old Mona Majid comes across as a shy teenager, but she’s the first woman to tread the male domain of gaming in Bahrain. Even as she waits to graduate from the Naseem International School this summer, Mona works at DvLZGaME, a media partner of PlayStation, doing gaming reviews and interviews to encourage women to participate in the gaming community.
Mona is one of the first cosplayers (costume player) in Bahrain to participate in anime and comic convections in Dubai. This year will see her judging the Games 13 cosplay competition, while the next year she will judge the cosply competition at ComicCon.
WTM: When did you start gaming?
Mona Majid (MM): I was raised by three brothers who were avid gamers and I think their passion for gaming must have rubbed off on me. I learnt many gaming tricks from them and then managed to convert some of my friends as well. Games such as Kingdom Hearts and Pokemon are my favourites.
WTM: Tell me about your PlayStation assignment.
MM: I’m working with PlayStation Middle East to generate media and social media content especially for female gamers in this region. I make videos where I talk about gaming and walk my viewers through a game as I’m playing it. My videos will be posted next month, first on the PlayStation website and then on YouTube.
WTM: What do you do when you’re not gaming?
MM: I love to create artwork and anime characters. I also play the guitar and compose music for myself; I’m thinking about producing a game with a soundtrack that I will write.
WTM: What big events are you hosting this year?
MM: I’m really excited about GamesCom in Germany in August this year, where I will cover the event for DvLZGaME and for PlayStation Middle East. I will be doing interviews and posting videos online. Around Christmas, we’ll have the launch of PlayStation 4 in Bahrain, which I will unbox and post my review online.
WTM: Is it possible to make a career out of gaming?
MM: Gaming and hosting game-related events is my passion. Besides PlayStation, I have offers from other companies to generate videos and social media content for them. Going forward, I plan to study graphics design so that I can incorporate that with gaming into my career.
WTM: Why haven’t women taken to gaming the way men have?
MM: There are a lot of women gamers in the Middle East. It’s just that they don’t come forward and show themselves. The three managers of PlayStation in Dubai are all women and gamers themselves. It’s time women gamers had a voice; they shouldn’t hold themselves back, but go out there and assert themselves.