Eight-division Filipino world boxing champion Manny Pacquiao will once again enter the ring. But this time, on a different arena as he was named the newest ambassador of Mobile Legends: Bang Bang (MLBB, or ML), and the new hero "Pacquito" is on his way to the so-called "land of dawn." - the term coined for the game's fictional battle arena.
MLBB Philippines marketing manager William Mei headed an online press conference to welcome the former pound-for-pound king to the family of Moonton, the company behind the massively successful mobile multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) game today, especially in most parts of Asia. Recently, the game reached 1 billion downloads combined on the Android/Google Play app store and IOS app store and has now become the most downloaded mobile MOBA game in the world.
The marketing manager mentioned that they were pursuing the Filipino boxing legend to be a part of their roster of celebrities and influencers for almost a year now. The company sees Pacquiao's immense popularity as one of the greatest boxers of all time not just in his home country but all throughout the world would be an influential factor for existing fans and players of the game, but also to attract more people in trying and eventually, being hooked in playing the game.
Even before being pursued by Moonton, Pacquiao is already familiar with the game. He said his eldest son Jimuel is an avid fan and player of it and is even streaming the game online along with his friends.
As a symbol of much appreciation to Pacquiao's commitment to MLBB, the game creators even developed a character inspired by the boxing champ and will be available for play in the soonest time. Pacquito, the boxer hero, is designed based on Pacquiao's aesthetic, form, and shown prowess inside the boxing ring.
Dressed as really like a boxer, the leaked early gameplays of the hero is available on YouTube, and the skills could be seen as deeply rooted and patterned with the boxer's power punches, "lightning"-like speed, and profound agility.
Filipino-Based Heroes were Already Available
Pacquiao may be the very first Filipino celebrity where a certain in-game hero was inspired from. But some existing Filipino characters, including Filipino heroes has already seen representations of them on various games and are available to play characters. In MLBB, a hero named "Lapu-Lapu" was already established and are already used by players today. The hero resembles the look of the one considered the vey first Filipino hero, Lapu-Lapu.
The world-famous arcade-based action game Tekken 7 also featured another Filipino hero as a name reference but turned into a female-gendered character, Josie Rizal, that was derived from the Philippine national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. Josie speaks local accent English in the game. The white flower designs on the midriff part of Josie's costume was based on the Philippine national flower "Sampaguita."