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"It Feels Like a Dream" - QueenArrow Talks to DashFight About Red Bull

Femi Famutimi
5 min

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"It Feels Like a Dream" - QueenArrow Talks to DashFight About Red Bull
The Kenyan esports professional discusses her dreams and aims for the next year

On the 17th of October, 2022, Sylvia “QueenArrow” Gathoni posted a video on her Twitter where she was being handed a face cap which was a sign that she had been invited to join the Red Bull gaming family. The video was well received as the congratulations poured in for another big win for the Kenyan superstar. Many pointed to the genuinely excited expression on QueenArrow's face which was an indication of what that moment meant to her. She had just become the first African FGC esports athlete to be added by the beverage giants. She now follows the footsteps of the likes of Cuddlecore, Anakin and Arslan Ash, who have all been made Red Bull athletes. 

This was no mean feat, and this led to DashFight reaching out to QueenArrow to talk to her. She agreed, and now we have this for you all to read. 

She was the first athlete to be featured in DashFight's 'Now You See Me' series which was a flurry of interviews with women in the FGC. She was a gracious interviewee, and she had a lot to say about how she feels and what her plans for the future are. 

How does it feel joining the Red Bull family? Can you walk us through how it happened?

It feels like a dream. I am feeling so many things at once: gratitude, anxiety, joy, overwhelmed, etc. I started working with Red Bull in 2019 after they saw me play at the African Esports Championships. I didn't really think much of it, but once they called me and asked me some questions, I began to research more into what they did and how they supported athletes, and I began to see the vision and became more deliberate about my performance, and how carried myself as an athlete, player, and person.

What are your plans moving forward in this space, any YouTube/Twitch goals? And what do you plan to do next as a player?

Moving forward, I'll still be streaming more on Twitch as my schedule allows (my bar exams are coming up next year so need to prep for that hehe) and as a player, my sights are set on North America. I want to grow stronger as a player as this year has shown me the breadth of potential I have as a player (5th place out of fifteen mixed events and gold medalist at the women's event at the CANOC Esports Series, Guadeloupe, baby). America has one of the strongest scenes in Tekken, and I know I have what it takes. I'll try Dreamhack Atlanta this year to measure where I am right now and see what I need to work on for next year.

How do you think this will affect the perception of Africa within the esports space, and what would you like to see happen for esports within the continent in the near future?

This will be a positive leap forward for the perception of Africa as a hub for esports as it shows that there are talented players who just need to be given the opportunities to grow themselves and show their mettle. Moving forward, I'd like more investment opportunities in esports in Africa in terms of gaming events and more brands locally and internationally, helping us build our scene from a grassroots perspective onwards.

How do you feel about Tekken 8, and what are you hoping gets added or removed?

I'm excited for Tekken 8 from the teaser trailer they showed us. It seems they'll take the lessons and positive elements from Tekken 7 and add them on. I really do hope they collaborate with the community content creators on adding a detailed tutorial mode that will allow new players to actually understand the game. I don't think dumbing down the mechanics and roots of Tekken in order to cater to casuals is the best idea. Teaching that a mechanic exists and why it is there and how to implement it in their gameplay is the best leap forward. I also hope there's rollback netcode because it is now the standard for fighting games, and other fighting games have implemented it in their games, so why not Tekken?

With all the hype surrounding Street Fighter 6, did you get to try it, and do you have plans to try out any other fighting game competitively?

I definitely signed up for the beta but wasn't successful in getting access to it. I really do want to try it out competitively (and hey, maybe there will be a local scene here in Kenya that will push me to get better at it competitively). I do want to get into it competitively (Luke and Kimberly for the win!)

Also, what did you think about the beta for SF6?

I saw a ton of positive feedback on it online. The rollback, the fighters hub, the story, the graphics *chef's kiss*

And that's it! We want to thank QueenArrow again for taking out the time to talk, and you should really follow her on Twitter, YouTube, and Twitch

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