The video game industry is the second largest industry in the world. The trend of video game development and designing is increasing day by day in Pakistan. It is proving fruitful for the economy of Pakistan, and the video game geeks of our country are competing at the international level. Globally, many women are working in the field of gaming industry but in Pakistan, the video game industry is considered as a male dominant field. Sadia Bashir has managed to break this stereotype and come forward as the successful female video game developer, designer, and a video game artist of Pakistan.
Since childhood, Sadia was always fascinated by the graphics and the characters of the video games and whenever playing these games with her friends and brothers, she always knew deep down in her heart that she wanted to become a video game developer when she grows up. Unfortunately, her parents could not afford her education expenses. But this hindrance did not stop Sadia from pursuing her studies. By giving tuitions and stitching clothes, this brave and determined girl managed to raise money for her school till her bachelor’s and later on her masters. She was the first female of her family to become a university graduate and study in a co-education environment.
Sadia Bashir did her graduation in Computer Sciences. Although she had tried her hands on graphic designing using Adobe Flash and Photoshop but working on her final project of developing a game using Unreal Development Kit (UDK) during her graduation, made her realize that she wanted to be a video game developer for sure.
Sadia started working for Keychain films as an artist, working on documentaries and animations. Later on, she also worked with Urchin Games for almost two years where she had the chance to create games. Sadia also got to work with well-known game publishers like Big Fish Games, G5, Game House, and Wild Tangent. After that, she started working with we.R.play, a famous game studio in Pakistan.
Currently, Sadia Bashir is the co-founder of PixelArt Games Academy (PGA) with her brother-in-law, Umair. While working on her thesis related to video game development in Pakistan, Sadia realized that Pakistan still has a far way to go in the gaming industry. The industry lacks certain resources, the fresh graduates or the budding gaming developers need guidance and mentoring. For that purpose, she came up with the idea of a gaming academy in Pakistan.
PGA is a platform for the gaming developers who want to pursue their career in the game industry. Currently, it provides workshops and training sessions to make sure that the budding video game artists receive the best education and guidance so that Pakistan can compete globally in the gaming industry with high-quality standards and development.
The idea of PGA started at WECREATE Center. Sadia got admission in the first batch by submitting her idea, and there she worked on her business plan. As a female, Sadia faced many challenges and rejections while working on her business model, as the video games are just considered for boys made by only boys. She used to hear negative remarks that her dream of becoming a video game guru will fade away as soon she gets married.
But Sadia did not give up and got encouragement from great mentors like Sean Griffin and many more famous international video game developers and designers.
The PGA is going to launch this year formally by enrolling students and providing different courses in the game development. As an active supporter of female empowerment, Sadia plans to sponsor specific seats for women and in future, some workshops specifically for women will be organized.
The story of Sadia Bashir is an inspiration for all those women entrepreneurs who want to try their hands in unique or male dominant fields. She has in fact become a role model for many people through her achievements, especially the female entrepreneurs of our country.