Like a drop of golden sun, Rae is that gamer girl friend who lights up the lobby with her bright and bubbly personality, but is ready to take the heat for you, whether it’s in-game or IRL.
She’s no stranger to challenges and the grind – for her spectacular work, Rae Saleha was just nominated for the 2022 Asian Television Awards’ for Best Leading Female Performance – Digital, starring in the mini series Korban.
With skillsets like a roster of character classes – this Overwatch and Dota 2 fan is an actress, singer, dancer (including aerial silk dance), and radio host on POWER 98 LOVE SONGS of a show featuring local entertainers.
But every ability needs a cooldown, and gaming is one of Rae’s favourite ways to get her health bar recharged.
Q: You have many talents – has gaming influenced any of them in any way?
Rae: I would say that gaming inspires me in my craft as a performer. The art style and characters do influence my creative direction and look when presenting myself.
Q: What games do you play?
Rae: I was obsessed with Overwatch (a team-based, first-person shooter), from the game itself to the short films by Blizzard Entertainment. These days, I wind down my days with cosy games such as Stardew Valley, Cosy Groove and the latest being Dream Light Valley. BUT now that Overwatch 2 is out and free to download, I’m itching to get my hands on it and waiting for a good time to play!!!
I consider myself a gamer and a homebody. I also love playing games on my own in my room. It is the best way for me to recharge and relax! I find joy in immersing myself in the virtual world and my Nintendo Switch is always with me 24/7.
Games are definitely more fun when playing with friends. However, due to work; filming, rehearsals, recordings and shows, it is hard to organise game sessions with friends as our schedules are packed!
A group of friends from work and I would go to the lan shop after work to de-stress and we even head down to play Overwatch after work shows instead of the usual supper places. It was intense but extremely fun and worth it. The familiar feeling of the crusty gaming chairs always geared us up and the owner knew us and gave us the inner private room to get our game on.
Have a game of your own with friends and enjoy 15% off for SAFRA members at Clique Gaming at SAFRA Tampines and SAFRA Jurong.
You can also get a $5 or $20 credit return voucher, when you spend $20/$50 of your NS55 credits at Clique Gaming. Valid till 30 Jun 2023.
Q: What are you like as a gamer girl? How do people react?
Rae: The gaming community doesn’t hold gender differences, that is what I believe and have experienced. I know a number of female gamers and I believe they would agree with me. Gaming is inclusive for everyone!
I’m known to be extremely competitive and aggressive when playing games. This is also evident in my cosy gameplays – I will spend hours just to farm and decorate my layouts according to my taste of aesthetics and play. I’d rate my skills 5 out of 10 in competitive games and 11 out of 10 in cosy games. I’m on the average side because my friend (shout out to Melody Leong) is an amazing sharpshooter and our mutual friends are equally great players!
Q: Describe the highest point of your gaming experience. And the lowest!
Rae: Every win is a high for me but to pick out ONE highest point I ever felt in my gaming hobby, it was winning a 1 vs 11 deathmatch with my friends in Overwatch. It was BRUTAL.
Imagine having 11 players chasing and cornering you! The moment I won, I think the whole lan shop could hear my winning war cry.
My lowest point would be the Overwatch match with Welp back in 2019. We were so geared up for it and confident but got too far in our heads to communicate and execute our strategy as planned. It was a good game though. GG.
Q: What are you like when you win? And when you lose?
Rae: My friends would agree that I get on a high horse when I win HAHAHA! They’d either admit defeat or demand a rematch. When I lose however, I get very quiet and even more focused. I can’t stand losing! On the other hand, if the loss comes after a good game, I will take it and respect the outcome. GGWP.
Q: Any favourite game characters or roles that you play?
Rae: My friends are great at support roles and carry, while I play the tank heroes in the team in Overwatch. My personality is similar with how I main tank characters – being on the frontlines and taking damage for the team while making sure we move forward! I will protect my loved ones no matter what!
I love Dota 2 but the gameplay is completely on a different level. Despite hours of learning the items and heroes ability, I am most familiar playing with Phantom Assassin and Shadow Shaman. All Dota players would agree with me that the game is just insane when it comes to items, skills, draft and strategies.
Q: If there were a game character that best represents you, who would it be?
Rae: I love D.Va from Overwatch the most as she too is a gamer who loves music, adventures and has great skill in engaging her fans. Being an artist who loves to game, surrounded by music and adventures, D.Va is my inspiration! Taking life head on unapologetically, not giving up after failures, showing no mercy to her adversaries and keeping up the love and with her fandom.
Q: How did you get into gaming and esports?
Rae: I’ve been gaming as long as I can remember. The first game I ever played was Metal Slug with my dad and sisters. I played it almost every night and it was something I always looked forward to. There were other games too such as Donkey Kong, Pokemon, Super Mario, Sonic the Hedgehog and online games such as Battle On, Runescape and Neopets! My love for gaming has never ceased!
I first came across Dota in 2015 and I have been following the majors and The International games ever since. What draws me: the art, gameplay, lore of the heroes and most importantly the joy of playing and watching esports with my loved ones.
As an introvert, I get to enjoy playing in the comforts of my home and when you are watching a match, it is like watching a really intense movie. If I were to choose going hiking versus gaming, I’d pick gaming anytime!
Q: Which are your favourite esports teams?
Rae: For Dota 2, I am a huge OG fan! I cannot count the number of times I have replayed their documentary True Sight: TI8 and TI9 (The International 2018 and 2019, an annual Dota 2 world championship esports tournament). I still am rooting for OG till this day despite the changes in the members of the team. However, I still keep track of past OG players such as Topson, Anna, Jerax, NoTail and Ceb. Whenever any of these players are playing for another team, I’m there rooting for them.
Q: Describe a typical esports hangout session with friends
Rae: Watching Dota matches at home and on the big screen is the best! Comfortable clothes, food and accessible toilet where we can run to and back without missing much of the game.
Q: Any unforgettable moments in Dota 2?
Rae: I have a funny story of how I first started to learn about Dota 2. It took me two weeks to learn how Dota works and the best items to get. I played against bots to get the hang of it and played Phantom Assassin for all the rounds in the duration of the two weeks. However, on the big night when I had to play with my group of friends, the hero I trained for was BANNED during drafting. I had to play a hero that I have zero knowledge of! Throughout the whole game, I was a lost sheep and kept feeding the opponent. I kept getting wrecked on the chat and of course, we ended up losing really badly and it took me a long time before I touched Dota again.
Q: Share your thoughts on using esports as a platform to do good for those who are less privileged.
Rae: Esports does generate a lot of money and all the competitive players spend years to master their play. It’s a language that is understood and respected by all, and games such as Dota bring people from all around the world and of all ages. I feel that it is a great platform to create awareness and a great way to give back to the community.
SAFRA’s charity event E-Sports With A Heart screened the TI Finals, and even though my favourite team was eliminated, the finals are always a must watch! Watching TI live is one on my bucket list and I was so excited when TI was going to be held in Singapore this year, but it was extremely hard to get the tickets. Watching the finals on a huge screen with fellow Dota players would be such a fun experience and one that I will not miss!
Furthermore, the tickets are very affordable AND the proceeds are donated. Giving back to the community to catch TI Finals on a huge screen with fellow Dota players? Perfect!
Help someone in need in Play To Donate at Esports Fiesta With A Heart on 5 and 6 November! Visit: https://www.safra.sg/whats-on/esports-fiesta-with-a-heart
Simply scan or save the QR code & give via PayNow on your LifeSG (for NS55 credits) or bank app.
To donate your NS55 credits:
- Launch your LifeSG app
- Go to Benefits and Support –> NS55 credits –> View details
- Tap on the blue “Scan QR code to pay” button and scan the QR Code below.
- Key in your desired amount, and you’re all set to proceed and donate!
Catch Rae as she gets up close and personal with local entertainers like Benjamin Kheng and Shigga Shay on POWER 98 LOVE SONGS, weekends from 8 to 9pm, on Backstage Pass with MDC.
Follow Rae on Instagram: @so.raerae