Gamers! and the Games We Play

After reading some of Stardf29’s initial thoughts on Gamers, I checked it out and likewise found it to be very engaging. The series had this weird sense of humor about it, and the director and writer approached the material in an unusual manner, as if to say, “We’re going to make a very typical story into something really interesting.” I guess that’s why I’ve been disappointed since then, as the show has lost almost all of its weirdness and devolved entirely into a series about simple miscommunication.

Instead of eight episodes of this nonsense, it could have all been ended if the characters would stop making so many assumptions and instead choose to be open. We could move on if the characters would just be real.

I could pile on even more, but I feel hypocritical doing so when I remember how silly I was in high school. I was neither genuine nor mature, resembling the characters from Gamers! (though without earnestness or moxie). I played games, ones involving relationships as I tried to gain advantages over everyone, whether it be in friendships, rivalries, or romances. Maybe these characters in Gamers!, then, are being real, sincere to the reality that teenagers are sometimes very stupid.

karen tendou
Sometimes sincerity means nervousness (art by 伍長 | reprinted w/permission)

College was the start of maturation for me, at least when it came to being more upfront. I had more friends who were the kind sorely needed in the core group of Gamers!, people would say exactly what needed to be said, and I started slowly moving that way, too. But while that meant I was becoming “real” in one sense, I still had a long way to go. You see, while I was able to be more honest and outspoken, I still lacked “realness” in other aspects.

Chiaki Hoshinomori
art by RedPoke | reposted w/permission (

That lack of sincerity reminds me of Genshiken, which I’ve said is kind of a more grown-up version of Gamers! The problems and relationships and maturation in latter show is appropriate to kids, while Genshiken takes it to a young adult level. There the characters deal with a different kind of sincerity problem – they had issues being vulnerable with others and true to themselves. The magic of the Genshiken club, in fact, is that it was a place where otaku could grow, not only in drowning themselves in their lifestyle, but as people. Oguie, for instance, is an entirely different person once Nidaime comes around. It’s hard to imagine that when we first see her, she is running away from her problems by literally jumping out of a building’s window.

There’s always room to grow, I guess. Like Tendou, Amano, Hoshinomori (both of them!), Uehara, and Aguri, I was wildly immature in high school; and as with Oguie and Sasahara, college presented new challenges for me as well. And after those years, adulthood, working, parenting now throw new wrinkles my way, new ways in which I need to be real with others and especially to myself. It never stops.

In fact, I hope it never stops. I think the day that I truly believe myself to be an absolute genuine person is the day I’ve probably fallen back into becoming a gamer – at the least the type who plays games, rather than living life as real as can be.



5 thoughts on “Gamers! and the Games We Play

  1. “I think the day that I truly believe myself to be an absolute genuine person is the day I’ve probably fallen back into becoming a gamer”
    *snaps fingers–in slam poetry fashion–in agreement*

  2. Yes, the anime I thought would be great after 2 episodes…..then the relationship drama happened. Like you said, it could have been fixed in one episode if they just talked to each other. But that wouldn’t make for good ridiculousness right? I wish it would focus more on the actual games though, as they did in the beginning. I’m going to skim through it and see how it goes, if not, gonna drop it.

    And yes, being real is something that constantly evolves as we get older. God helps us to mature and be made more in His likeness, especially our character. I have been through so much drama in my life that is has helped mature me, yet sometimes I feel I can be pretty tough on myself and others because of the shield I put up to protect myself sometimes. I know I will continue to grow and change, and God will help me through those times just as He always has.

    1. It’s quite an adventure to see how grows us, moving us past those things which hold us down!

      I’m hoping for another season of Gamers…there’s more to it than silly relationship drama. I KNOW IT.

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