Nowadays, it is not so uncommon to see couples who love to play video games, whether it be console or PC, online or offline. Most of the time, these couples are more likely to have met each other via the game forums or in-game chat. It maybe an ideal romantic scene for an adventurer to fall in love at first sight with someone’s avatar or voice through team chat; you just have to let your imagination go wild on how he she might look or sound like, and who knows, he or she MIGHT happen to be the person of your dreams. It may be a little stereotypical to think that boys go bonks whenever they have a female team mate shooting or fighting with them. Indeed, most of the guys I know would actually extend help; protecting their female comrade in battle or even invite her for a “virtual date” while doing exp quests on the side.
The gaming world is not a bad place to look for love, aside from cleaving vicious monsters (or players) and going for top rank, most gamers are open to opportunities of meeting a partner who will not only be their tank/healer but also their prince/princess IRL.
And so, comes this question, how should or how can being a gamer couple work out? Are there any rules/etiquette when it comes to their gaming habits?
A typical couple who met in-game could mean the following: they play almost at the same time of the day, they are party mates, have the same level and do the same quests, or their character roles complement each other. After becoming an official couple outside the virtual world, what will be next?
There are lucky couples who continue to have the so-called perfect set up, wherein they are able to continue playing at the same time in whichever game they fancy. Just how essential it is that a gamer couple that plays together, stays together?
For my part, I have always made it a point that my boyfriend comes first before my game. Whether he just logged in or texted that he can’t play, I always make it a point to reply to him first in before continuing with my game (yeah even if I am in the middle of the mission, I will still call/text back, while putting my character in a safe zone LOL). Likewise, I have placed a rule with him that he should always PM me first before he plays just so I know he is online and would mean that he will reply late to my messages (yeah, I’m that kind of girl). I won’t mind if he is playing a game I don’t like or if he plays at a time that I can’t and vice-versa (the paranoia of him flirting with other girls in-game is still there though). I will also never force him to quit playing with the exception of him getting too addicted in the game that he “forgets” communicating with me and everything else. Couples that do not live together can find comfort in knowing that they can still do dates and go on adventures, and everything else in-game.
Playing games is like having your personal space, you alone can decide what you want to do and how to go about with it. Having someone else intrude in this space, even if he/she is a beloved one, will still be a trying scene for anyone. So how do you make a workaround to playing your own style without having to offend your partner? Having gone to similar experiences, here are a few tips for gamer couples, especially those who are starting out or those who could be struggling to keep their relationship alive:
- Gauge how addicted your partner is to the game. There are some who can be intensely glued to their favorite game, while a few others who tend to be perfectionists while in play. Changing their gaming behavior can’t be done overnight and the best you can deal with this is to talk and compromise. You met him/her as a gamer so its only fair to consider that whatever it is he/she is doing in-game is important to him in every way. Be patient, he/she is doing her best to rush to the nearest save point so they can give their attention to you.
- Try to make time to play with him/her whenever you have the chance. Playing with partymates is fun, but playing with your partymates as well as with your special boy/girl is more awesome (provided that your partymates do not dislike your boy/girl and vice versa). Going on a mission with him/her as well as your partymates and winning is one of the greatest feelings that you can achieve when playing. It also raises the intimacy level with everybody by +1 (or more). And you gotta admit, there is more fun and excitement in playing with everyone (all the better if you get to be the leader and take charge while taking that precious loot from a level 100 boss for your class change quest).
- Take initiative in telling him/her about your in-game adventures while you are waiting for him/her to log-in. It can’t be helped that you might want to play solo while waiting for him/her or if he/she can’t really play for the day, but sometimes, there is that paranoia (especially for girls) that your partner will think of you as just flirting around (yes even with MOBA games). It is an unavoidable fact that guys have this tendency to flirt, even for a bit, the moment they confirm that they’re with a female playmate, same goes for those curious ladies trying to know how a newly-met guy would look like in person. Be casual and tell your partner what happened with your solo adventure. Tell him/her about the new people you met, what mission you did and other trivial things. He/she is a gamer, even if he/she is not playing your game, since it is your game, he/she will always show an interest in your everyday gaming life.
- Never cover your playing time with a white lie. Lying to your partner just so that you can have your solemn solo play time is never a good excuse. No matter how sugar-coated it is, it’s still a lie and will definitely chunk out trust in your relationship. Do not be afraid to tell him/her that you are playing and will be busy for a while; remember, he/she is a gamer too and he/she will definitely understand that you will be busy and will not be able to reply to their text messages or PM in time.
- Last, and I have always believed to be the most important, never make him/her feel that he/she is someone else whenever both of you play at the same time. Being sweet when you are together can have a double effect when in-game. Ignoring him/her while both of you are playing is not good, both with your gaming style as well as IRL, besides, you never know when you will need your partner’s extra stuff/potion/loot/gold, so keeping a close gaming relationship is still beneficial for both. Never miss out a chance to raise your intimacy level, being sweet with him/her in front of your guild may be too cheesy but will definitely level up your relationship.
The best part of having a gamer boyfriend/girlfriend? You can have him/her pilot your account so you can level up faster (mwahahaha). In any relationship, communication is the most important. Even if one, or both of you are gamer geeks, expressing yourselves will always pave the way to fixing arguments and deepening your relationship for each other be it via the virtual world or IRL. Gaming does not need to be a cause for a break up/misunderstandings, instead, it is a whole new dimension you can explore with your special someone to sharing new memories and intensify your relationship.
All of these said regarding the virtual world, being beside him/her is still priceless. While the virtual world is a convenient way to be with your loved one, still, it is best to be with them in person. A movie or anime marathon at home, dinner date, or simply hanging out at night and watching the stars; whatever you can do in person with them, the real-time interaction and emotions, cannot compare even if you give the legendary equips to your partner. Him/her beside you is enough to make you feel you are the strongest person in the universe.
Yes, I know. Most of these are plain common sense if both parties have at least a nugget of respect for each other; suggestions, or reinforced ideas, if you may. In the happenstance that you decide to actually put ‘rules’ in your lives as a couple, then you’d better rethink where the both of you are on this relationship.