“Transgender Street Fighter” with @HelloKittyRicki on BBC

Evil Geniuses’s Ricki Ortiz sits down with BBC to shed some light on her past ordeals. One particular topic that decorates this interview is her struggle with coming to terms with her gender identity as a transgender woman. Many have been curious to see how this ordeal blends with her life as a competitor in the world of esports.

It has not been an easy road, but her time in the fighting game community aided her greatly with her gradual transition into her new life. She’d grown up in the arcades at California, where Alex Valle would ultimately bring LevelUp LLC to life. As time went on, her talents in the Street Fighter series exploded out of control, attracting the attention of the worldwide competitive community. She’d dominated the competition with Rufus throughout the Street Fighter 4 series and now she’s doing likewise with Chun-Li in Street Fighter V. She’d recently placed second in Capcom Cup 2016, losing only to the champion, Liquid Nuckledu.

But even while on stream, Ricki was fighting two battles at once. One with her opponent…and one with her own shadow.

From watching this interview, you can just feel Ricki’s heart pouring into each of her words, a reflection of all of the turmoil she’d experienced when she tried to juggle her life at the arcades and her journey to learn about who she truly was. It wasn’t until about three years ago that she finally made the transition, and to this day, it’s a decision that has brought her a sense of peace.

Give it a watch. It’s well worth your time:


At the end of the day, regardless of your status, we are all fighting game players who share in the same trials. Our passions, our triumphs, our downfalls, the arenas we compete in, the roads we travel…they are all one and the same. 🙂

Please be sure to follow Ricki Ortiz at her Twitter account!