hello, I'm Zorine Te. I work hard to quietly deliver the best content in video games.


I love gamers. As most of you may already know, I devote a huge chunk of my life to gaming. Even before I started working in the industry, I have clocked so many hours skilling up, playing with friends, watching tournaments, etc. Specifically, competitive gaming was something that has had a huge influence on my life, and will continue to be for a long time.

So when I have to repeatedly prove myself to my fellow gamers simply because I am a female, I get frustrated.

Because people assume I know nothing of competitive gaming, that I don’t have any skill, that I don’t know I embedded myself in that history here in Australia, that I have never competed in tournaments and led my team to SWEET, SWEET VICTORY.

A team of men I captain, by the way.

I remember chatting at the booth of a brand (that I will not name) at last year’s PAX Australia. Conversing with 2 guys about one of my favourite topics (CS) I remember gushing about the good old 1.5 days, source TV, and how warmod was a failure (sorry Garfield). They were surprised, and one guy turned to the other and said, “This girl’s legit!”
My response? “Uhh, of course. I work in esports” – because at the time, GameSpot still covered esports and I was the person in Australia to do it.
Him: “Yeah but there are heaps of chicks who ‘work in esports’ and not know anything about it”

Really? Feeling uncomfortable, I brushed it off with a laugh and left the booth.

Rewind further back. I am at a competitive event, for once not competing, but representing media.

“This is the LoL area,” the admin explained to me, “Oh, LoL stands for League of Legends…”

I refrained from rolling my eyes.

I am sitting in an internet cafe. Amidst my team, I draft out our hero picks and bans for this game. It is our first Dota 2 tournament in a long time.

Later, my teammate confided in me, “I could have been naked and painted blue and nobody would have looked at me”
So what, I say. I was one sole woman of what, 30-something competitors. So bloody what. Let them stare. I need to stay focused on the game to take us to victory.

It’s like I need to wear a t-shirt listing all my achievements in chronological order to simplify the process of proving myself every time I meet somebody new.

Instead, I remain patient that one day I simply will not face the doubt and disbelief anymore. Or I’ll just start cross-dressing at tournaments.

Comments on: "Proving myself in esports, again and again and again and again" (11)

  1. I just realized that this article started with “I love gamers”. I love you too Zorine. 🙂

  2. keep the spirit up ~


  3. SARCASM MODE ON: “Gurls can’t know nuthin’ ’bout gamin’ cuz they don’t play gamez” SARCASM MODE OFF.
    Sometimes I wish I knew where where people get ideas like that, other times I’m glad I don’t. I’ve gamed with girls my whole life. My little sister (6 yrs younger than me) played DnD and other table games since she was six, and continues to play to this day, drawing in other women to play in our group. She’s also played video games for almost as long, though not as much as me. Various groups I’ve played with have involved female friends and family almost without exception. I’ve always been surprised when I hear things like girls never game or are inferior players or crap like that. Sure, it may be male dominated, but it’s not like there is a shortage of girl gamers, at least not in my experience.
    To echo what you said, one bad apple spoils the barrel.

  4. YellowSanchez said:

    Unfortunately there will always be idiotic, ignorant, trolling people in this world. All you got to do is brace through it. You have proven yourself over the years as a seasoned gamer, journalist and person. Just keep doing what you do and if you meet anymore ignorant people then everyone at gamespot and your fans and friends will back you up all the way. If you are ever in Boston for Pax east or some other gaming related gathering, i will stand by you 100% and most likely wear a shirt that says “If you think she doesn’t know shit about games then i will beat you RAW”

  5. James Cole said:

    You could get a team captain shirt with a list of your team’s achievements. Maybe find some other small or subtle way of expediting the reeducation of people. Every time you prove people wrong, as long as it’s not hurtful and whatnot, you’re doing good. It’s stupid and annoying, sure … but you could turn around this demoralizing factor a bit occasionally at least.

    If you wanna just compete in peace like the males, then you’re either gonna have to keep waiting for natural acclamation (which takes a freaking long time on every issue 😦 ) or win big and become hugely famous. Maybe make your frustration a fuel to do the latter.

    I’m sure you’ve thought of all this; just brainstorming and pontificating … because it’s the internet. Hey, I’ve talked about your esports-ed-ness to two people in the Lake Michigan region who play Dota. I have no idea what I’m talking about on the subject, but Represent! And maybe if you were ever in Chicago, you’d only have to cross-dress if you wanted to.

  6. the great part about being an adult is not giving a shit what others think about you – my question is who are you proving anything to? random strangers you meet? if so, who cares what they think? Its a gaming tournament, play to have fun and win. Does it really matter what others think of you? If it results in you being unable to do your job/recreation, then yes it matters – like sexism in the workplace. If people refuse to play/compete with you based on your gender, that’s messed up. But even then, if someone made that decision about me, I wouldn’t want to play/compete with them either, would you? Everyone makes judgments, rational or irrational, about other people. Seeking/expecting universal approval/acceptance is a fool’s goal.

    As for the guys staring at you/checking you out – well, guys stare at girls all the time, in practically any situation, that phenomenon will never end. As for the admin with the LoL comment – if his job was helping people find areas to go to – how is he supposed to know what your knowledge base is? Clueless media members do exist. Maybe he caught himself saying Lol and realized he sounded like a douche and said the name properly.

  7. Prehistoric springs to mind lol. I personally find it hard to believe that people like that still exist but I know they do. Just keep beating them 🙂

  8. Quite sad really. I know plenty of girls who play games and are bloody good at it. Easy for me to say don’t worry about it. Must be great when you beat these guys

    • Thanks Shangelus! Oh it does feel awesome. For the most part, most of the community is super welcoming and awesome. Only a few bad eggs ruining the game for everyone else.

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