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Coming off a big win at TwitchCon for the Twitch Rivals Fortnite Tournament, NETGEAR and Nighthawk Pro Gaming hosted TINAARES, maddiesuunn and iCarleeFN from GEN.G at NETGEAR’s San Jose Office. The event was a Q/A session with the players, moderator Ben “ZarduBen” Acevedo and Gen.G General Manager Nathan Stanz.

With questions from the NETGEAR audience on topics ranging from how the players garnered support from their family to pursue a professional gaming career, to the struggles of fighting gender bias in gaming and competitive play, to other players and the general misconceptions of gender and performance, the team provided a fascinating glimpse into what it’s like to join a team and compete in a burgeoning phenomenon like E-Sports.

When asked about the how the gaming world has received them, maddiesuunn responded “My goal is that one day we are not labeled as ‘Female Professional Players’ but instead as ‘Professional Players’.”

TINAARES fielded questions about her win at TwitchCon and how she was surprised that they had won. Her team pulled ahead in the scoring with the most eliminations in the four rounds. They won the tournament without winning a match directly.

iCarleeFn, maddiesunn and TINAARES all recalled how they had met on H1Z1 and had eventually moved to Fortnite where TINAARES entered a small tournament and that lead to be scouted and signed by GEN.G in 2018.

Nate Stanz answered questions about how GEN.G works to build players and how each athlete has access to housing, food, medical and mental healthcare as a comprehensive package of supporting each player.

After the hour-long Q/A, NETGEAR employees had the chance to play directly with the Fortnite team. For many this was their first time playing any first-person shooter or video game, so the team had their work cut out for them. They graciously guided each employee player through a round of Fortnite, giving tips, tricks, hints and generally explaining overall gameplay mechanics and the metagame.

The event was a great chance to highlight some incredible gamers, to get first-hand insights  into the daily life of pro-players, and a rare chance to floss, loot and shoot with a Twitch Rival champion.

Ben Acevedo
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