I am not ashamed of it. I’m playing Ragnarok Mobile: Eternal love because of LOVE–at least during the first month. While some people find love on the Role-playing game, I found it way before Ragnarok’s re-release, in my ever-so-sweet and worthy gamer boyfriend. He wished to be able to play his beloved RPG with me. Hence, to deepen my long-distance relationship with him, I complied. That’s not a bad thing, right?
During the start of the 30-day countdown to the 2019 mobile launching of Ragnarok Eternal Love, my boyfriend asked me to watch the Ragnarok animation, as an introduction to how the game works. I was oriented with each of the characters, on the proposition that I will be a Healer, or in Ragnarok, a Priest. Aside from the reason that I was to become his female support, I was inexperienced, so the least active character in battles was well-suited for me.
A lot of men dream of being superheroes: a Knight in shining armor (no wonder why superhero movies dominate world cinema). They can’t be swaggy heroes in real life, but in the quantum realm of Gaming, they can strut their stuff and become masters of the universe or the underworld. What better way to complete that fantasy than to have their women behind them–the Megan Fox to Shia LaBeouf’s robotic warfare in Transformers, or the Mary Magdalene of Jesus Christ, one of the most acknowledged Saviors of this world.
Being a Noob and a Poseur
Then it became serious. I knew it was, deep in my heart, but it wasn’t something I was prepared for. Group Endless Tower quests have been defeated because of me. I was laughed upon for being a “noob.” In their perspective, it was an insult to be called one, but to me, it was gospel truth, and I am aware enough to say it to the whole world: I am a NOOB! But that’s not to say that I didn’t care. I realized that I have become a poser, the apotheosis of the Imposter Syndrome.
According to Psychology Today, in the article, The Impostor Syndrome and How to Handle It, “One of the greatest barriers to moving outside your comfort zone is the fear that you’re a poser, that you’re not worthy, that you couldn’t possibly be qualified to do whatever you’re aiming to do. It’s a fear that strikes many of us: imposter syndrome.”
In the past few years, Gaming has been a big deal, with eSports competitions and events being held several times a year. The rise of the Gaming industry is one of the prime reasons why the geek status is now the “new cool.” Playing dress-up games such as Lady Popular, or mind games like Word Hunt or even the now-defunct RPG Emo Game doesn’t make a person like me, a gamer.
Now, let me justify myself.
I never intended to be a gamer, and I am still not one. I was doing this for LOVE, remember? I knew nothing about the world of RPG (Role-Playing Games like Ragnarok, Diablo, etc.) and Fighting games until I was asked to play it. At present, it’s almost like I am living in a parallel universe wherein I play a complex online game, and that is a 180-degree turn from my usual reality.
That’s because, in my almost 30 years of existence, it was the world of gaming (even Nintendo or Playstation) that I have never subjugated myself into. It’s not because I was uninterested; it was more because of my greater interest in other things, such as music and television. Aside from that, growing up having technologically-challenged parents, we never had the urge to get a personal computer until I was in the second year of high school.
Sadly, it was a girl who ridiculed me most in the game. Our generation has reached a time wherein a series of hobbies originally marketed towards boys, such as gaming and rock n’ roll, can also be indulged by girls. However, it’s unfortunate that sometimes, girls still cooperate in the “competitiveness” of being a “legit” gamer or rocker. Many girls won’t say it out loud, but in the world of men, we still want to be accepted. Or perhaps we wish to dominate, vs. the other girls. There is still a struggle.
Overcoming the Imposter Syndrome
To get hold of this “poseur” or imposter syndrome, Psychology Today suggests focusing more on what I’m learning than how I’m performing. Focusing on my performance heightens my feeling of lack and inadequacy, instead of learning and enjoying the game itself.
Another tip is to change my perspective and think of how many girlfriends like me are experiencing the same way. I haven’t really encountered someone in our Ragnarok guild who is a noob, but when I check blog posts and Facebook comments about it, it’s very liberating.
From time to time, my boyfriend can’t help but laugh at me ‘coz to be honest, more than fighting the monsters, I enjoy donning new headgears for my character. However, I believe that that’s the main motivating factor (rare items such as headgears) of the “legit” gamers, aside from killing monsters and having fun with their guild. Hence, I think it’s nothing very far from my typical dress-up game. Peace!
P.S. I chose the monk, not the priest after the acolyte, to my boyfriend’s shock. The rebel girl in me always strikes.