The Perks of the Gaming Community… or Maybe Not

If you’re gonna ask me to describe myself last year, I’d say I’m a blogger, a reader, a frustrated writer, a homebody, a book club member and a 24/7 an occasional crazy, mean girl. If I’m going to answer that question today, I’m adding “a casual gamer” on the list. Honestly, I never thought I’d call myself that. I mean look at the way I described myself before, isn’t that already geeky? And now that? Well, maybe I am geeky [1]… or maybe not.

I was never really into gaming. It was only when Jeff and I became friends that I started playing online games. He introduced me to various MMORPGs and console games when we started dating but I didn’t play that much because studying was on top of my priorities. It was only a few years after I started working that I continued playing various games but it didn’t eat most of my time because I was more into books, drama series, movies and my social life. I finished a few games, others left me frustrated which I gave up on, and some I tried but never played seriously. I was never and will never be a hardcore gamer. I know I only do it because I’m having fun and it’s an effective stress reliever at most times. As I’ve mentioned in my August MAT and WUF posts, I was (and still) going through a phase in my life that made me look into other things to divert my sulking “outlook”. And that’s where Ragnarok Online 2 kicks in.

This is something I shouldn’t really talk about in this blog but my blog’s theme is “Love and All the Things I Love”, right? Can you give me this one post to talk about it? Pretty please? RO2 is something I appreciated and started to like recently not because of the game itself but the community I found in the game. I played for a while in SEA with my co-workers and it was fun while it lasted. But because of how bad the handler handled the game, I eventually moved to NA when it opened. We know there isn’t much of a difference between the two servers and both handlers are making grave mistakes one after the other. The community isn’t as lively as before and I dare say that I haven’t mingled with half of the game’s population even if it’s dwindling at this very minute. So what community am I talking about? They are the people I’m usually with, those I’ve talked and played with at one point, the players I often see whose names are flashing in front of my screen or those I see talking nonsense in the public chat, and lastly, they’re the friends I found in game.

I never expected to find “friends” here. I mean, because I wasn’t a pro-player and I’m only just starting with OL games, I couldn’t understand the “relationship” the players build in game. It didn’t cross my mind that there’s a real person behind the characters I see in game. I don’t make sense, right? Of course, there’s someone controlling the character. It wouldn’t move by itself (unless you are using a third party program). It’s hard to explain, really. But maybe the point I’m trying to cross is that, these players are “real” and they have issues too. Like any other online community, you make friends, you talk to them, you connect with them (which social networks make it easier nowadays), you get to know them, and eventually understand how they think, who they are, and if given the chance meet them in person. I shouldn’t be new to this, no? It’s the same with how I found The Filipino Group[2]. The only difference is that I’ve met the people in the book club and we see each other on a monthly basis.

I’d been to three guilds since the conception of the game. First was Solitude, it then merged with HousèBunny, then I went to BALASUBAS and now I’m with Galajuan. I was with Kyuu in all of these guilds and she is one of the players I connected within and outside of the game. There are also other players that I’m beginning to build friendship with like Alvin, Camssy, Kuya Mac and the rest of the Pinoy International players that I’m regularly with when I’m online. And you know what I find funny? There is “life” in the gaming community. Here are some of the highlights of my experience and why I’m so enthralled with the community today:

  • Whenever I ask anyone their age, it makes me feel old. WTF, am I the only one in their mid-twenties here? Let me reiterate that—mid-twenties! And if ever someone will be honest and admit me their real age, hah. I’ll jump in joy! (Or give away free spinels?)
  • Some players play because they are trying to mend their broken hearts. (Did I hit a sore spot?) People tend to look for a diversion when they’re having issues and you can find them here. I’m one of them, right? Though I am not broken hearted. Swear.
  • There is drama in the gaming community. Believe me. There is. And sometimes it’s as worse as our teleseryes. Pff.
  • There is politics too—everything in politics. Though I hope we won’t have another Napoles here in game.
  • There are bitches in one end, assholes on the other, and users in between. But there are also those who are genuine human beings too.
  • You find new friends, new relationship, new enemies, and yes, new love life. There is hope for those BH players! (Please see bullet #2) Let’s just hope it’s not a rebound. (Note: It’s exactly the same with the book club! Haha)
  • Guilds here are like call centers. Players are guild hopping all the time. Just like what call center agents do, they hop to different centers.
  • Since I’m already comparing it to the BPO industry, the attrition rate of players is also the same with BPOs. It changes every patch.
  • People here love to trash talk. I tolerate some but most of the time I tune them off but I still love lurking in public chat anyway.
  • If you lose your cool, you’re dead (literally) and pissed. Hahaha.
  • You meet people from all walks of life! Some you will hate, others you wouldn’t like and few are gems that are worth keeping.

See? It’s just the same with every community you find online and in real life. And since I’m already making this post, I’ll grab the opportunity to promote the Galajuan and BALASUBAS page. Can you click the banners below and like each page? We wouldn’t flood your feed with useless posts, pinky-swear! Thank you!

PS: I made the draft of this entry weeks ago but you know how lazy I can get when posting new entries in my blog. I’m adding something and yes, I’m too lazy to rewrite the post.

It’s been weeks since Galajuan was founded and we’ve been through a few bumps along the way. I wasn’t online that much for the past few weeks (life is being a b**** once again) but I make it a point to check our page from time to time (you know, chismosa lang!).

Galajuan went through hell and back. We’ve been bashed, criticized, and talked down to. We are a team of crazy, impossible but passionate, loyal individuals who stood their ground and fought for what we believe in even if all of them say it’s a hopeless cause. We aren’t perfect, we make mistakes, we get angry, we get disappointed but we chose to continue and grow rather than be affected of what’s happening in this unfair, one-sided, preposterous, RO2 game.

This is what life in Galajuan is. No matter how many times you step on us, no matter how much derision you throw in our face, we will keep on moving forward. Talk as much as you like but one thing is for sure—we are still standing and will continue to do so—after all, we are a bunch of hard-headed pricks anyway. Isn’t that right, Papa Doray?

[1] Wikipedia’s definition <here>
[2] TFG is an online reading community that meets up every month to have a formal book discussion. We also have HOHOL (Hang out Hang out Lang), an event we go to every now and then whenever we are overwhelmed with clingy-ness.

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