At 15, 'Jiji Plays' Has Saved P4 Million and Built a House
Jhewelry Hershey Dela Cerna, aka Jiji Plays, was already paying for her own tuition at school when she was 14. Now 15, Jiji Plays is also a proud homeowner, and it’s no small thanks to her passion for playing Mobile Legends: Bang Bang.
“Noong bata po talaga ako, mahilig po talaga ako sa mga laro. Ang dami ko pong laro na inaalam, siguro five years old o six," Jiji tells GMA.
(“When I was young, I was already into games. There were many games that I really studied, and I was five or six years old then.”)
But it was because of her father, who is an avid gamer who plays Mobile Legends, that got Jiji into the popular game.
"Una ko po siyang nakita kay Daddy, naglalaro siya. Tapos tinanong ko kung ano 'yung nilalaro niya, sabi niya ML daw po. Nagpaturo po ako kay daddy," sabi ni Jiji.
(“I first saw [Mobile Legends] when Daddy played it. I asked him what he was playing and he said ML. I asked him to teach me.”)
On Facebook, Jiji Plays has over four million followers. She streams her gameplays on Mobile Legends in the morning, then takes a nap in the afternoon, and studies. Currently, Mobile Legends is the most popular mobile game in the Philippines. The Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Professional League (MPL) is also the largest esports tournament in the country, drawing millions of viewers every week.
When Jiji started streaming in 2020, her mother was against it for fear that it would affect her studies. But once she realized it was really Jiji’s passion, she also supported it. From a few hundred followers back then, her page grew to 4 million supporters in less than two years. She also has over 240,000 subscribers on YouTube, where a chunk of her income comes from.
In her interview with GMA, Jiji revealed it was her dream to own a house since she was four years old. “I really dreamed it,” she says.
Jiji Plays is a talent and streamer at ECHO, a top esports organization in the Philippines.