From Gamer to Top Engineer: How This Gaming Addict Turned His Obsession into Success

Niele Shem Bañas, once an online gaming addict, shared his secret to kicking the habit and topping the April 2024 Electronics Engineering Licensure Examinations.

Years ago, Niele Shem Bañas was an online gaming addict, playing until sunrise with the ultimate dream of becoming the best gamer out there.

But with some serious discipline, he turned his gaming obsession into just a hobby, playing only when bored or stressed. And this shift in focus paid off big time: he clinched the top spot in the April 2024 Electronics Engineering Licensure Examinations.

His alma mater, Technological University of the Philippines-Visayas in Negros Occidental, was so proud of its 23-year-old topnotcher that it rewarded him with Php200,000, which Niele plans to give to his parents as a thank-you for all their sacrifices to put him through school.

Niele’s “on-and-off” addiction to online gaming began in junior high school and escalated during the pandemic when he was finishing senior high.

“Luckily, at the end of the pandemic, I grew tired of the stress induced by constantly trying hard to rank up in online games, which led to me slowly quitting the game and only playing if I’m really bored or stressed,” said Niele in an interview with PEP.ph.

His secret to kicking the habit was finding other productive things to do. “There are so many things in this world more worthy of our time than the virtual world of gaming,” he advised.

It’s easier said than done but what made him overcome his addiction was not quitting gaming entirely.

“They can use that addiction as a hobby instead [of falling] back to when things are rough,” said Niele, who proved that with the right balance, anyone can achieve anything.