It is rare to find someone who has carved out a successful gaming career. But someone who can do it all, casting, voice acting, streaming and gaming?
Now, that’s a rare find and Riku is one such gem. The 29-year-old has done it all, turning all her greatest passions and talents into a living and breathing career.
Humbling Roots to Full-fledged Professional
Hailing from the Philippines, Riku started off wondering how, as a League of Legends esports fanatic, she could build a career in gaming. It was then that she found a casting call for the Garena Premier League (GPL) and the PGS(Pro Gaming Series).
She said: “I love speaking on the microphone, I love talking and I love League of Legends, this is my spot! This is the sweet spot!”
To top it all off, Riku was doing voice actress work prior to the audition. Needless to say, she was able to ace the audition and proceeded to cast the Garena Premier League.
“For the casting part though, it was a totally different thing; I still had to learn the ropes through experience and from my peers in the field,” she said.
She also did not hesitate to mention casting veteran Richard “Pulse” Kam as her “ultimate senpai” who helped her grow into the caster that she is today.
She said: “I felt like I hit a wall and I needed direction. But when Pulse did a caster training camp, I felt like I found my direction and was able to grow again.”
And grow she did. Over the course of eight years, she grew to over 17k followers on twitter and a whopping 239k followers on Facebook. During this time, she had casted for several large-scale international events, including the PVP Esports Championship (Arena of Valor), Pacific Championship Series (League of Legends) and most recently the Horizon Cup (Wild Rift).
“I think it (Horizon Cup) is the craziest and biggest event I have ever experienced,” said Riku. “The fact that it’s a global event of a game that you love is a dream come true. Being on the desk on the Finals, I thought to myself: Woah is this really happening? What?”
On the Case
Shoutcasting isn’t just all about talking over a video game though. In Riku’s case, she spends hours upon hours doing her homework on the game, researching team and player backgrounds and watching several hours of VoDs to pick out the important aspects that each team exhibits.
“For the Horizon Cup preparations, it was just watching most of the VoDs from every single region. I start from the finals then if I need more information then I watch backwards. It’s all hands on deck: Drop everything, this is it.”
Naturally this is a tiring process. One can only watch a VoD trying to piece out the narrative for so long. In Riku’s case, she takes a mental break by booting up Legends of Runeterra. While ironic, she claims it works, especially since she plays the Path of Champions mode to relax.
Potential OfflineTV Collab?
Riku also had the opportunity to meet several of the OfflineTV crew during her adventures. A single mention of OfflineTV had her excited and on the edge of her seat.
“I already met Scarra during All Star 2018,” she said excitedly.
“I was playing 1v1 and Scarra was watching me. Back then I would click on the arrow on the screen to level-up my skills instead of using my keyboard. When Scarra was watching, he was like ‘I can’t with this girl. She’s pressing the arrow on the screen’,” she recounted laughing. She has never clicked the arrow since.
In another instance, Toast mentioned her name for a collab when he was asked during an AMA session for his Facebook gaming debut. Is there a potential collab for Riku on the horizon? Perhaps during the next All Star event?
R & R
In her off-time, which comes very sparingly due to her line of work, she enjoys playing “the critically acclaimed MMORPG Final Fantasy XIV”. It’s impressive that she managed to clear the Asphodelos raid considering the amount of time she has in her busy schedule.
As for Wild Rift, Riku’s favourite champion is still Morgana.
“You can use Morgana anywhere, in any lane; even in the jungle,” she said. “And yes, thousand years of snare.”
They say you can tell a person’s personality from the Champions they play in League of Legends. From what we can tell, Riku’s certainly very adaptable with a little bit of a chaotic neutral vibe. Just don’t get snared.
What’s next for Riku?
Riku’s next project will be casting for Wild Rift, mainly the WCS Philippines, which will start 25 Feb 2022. After which, she will also be involved with the WCS Championship and perhaps the Icons Global Championship in June too!
Things are starting to get mighty busy for Riku so be sure to check out her socials for more updates.