#2. Players Have Groupies
I already explained how pro StarCraft players get cash and fame, which is weird enough, but on top of that, they also get chicks. Throngs of girls seriously throw themselves at these scrawny game-playing nerds.
Don't get me wrong, I've got a thing for scrawny game-playing nerds myself. I'm just saying--and I'm sure you'll agree--that maybe they should show a little skin to earn that heartthrob status.
I mean, look at that. It's like every player has to be buttoned right up the neck every time they take a photo. Grrr on the right there is even wearing a damned parka. (Canadians.)
Despite all that, top players like Lim Yo-Hwan come back from matches to find their team van covered with messages from girls (hopefully) saying things like "Lim Yo-Hwan, I'm yours, I belong to you," and "Marry me, Lim Yo-Hwan."
This somewhat disturbing blog post about a player named Bisu (Kim Taek Yong) is probably not unique, and is likely a direct result of him showing a little skin as I advised:
I know, what is wrong with these girls, right?
Reach (Park Jung Suk) is clearly much more handsome.
#1. Sometimes Players Just Lose It
I've been referring to "pro gamers" but when I say "professional" I only mean they are paid to play. Many players are not, in any other sense of the word, "professional." Which from my point of view, is great.
My favorite is FireBatHero. FBH, as he would be called in a rap, was an ordinary mild-mannered Korean pro player...
...until one day, when he scored a surprise underdog victory against star player sAviOr, whom I will call Savior from here on out because come on.
The shock caused FBH to lose his mind.
And he began to dance.
Korean culture generally frowns on showboating and bad sportsmanship so this was a bit of an event. People were probably confused at first, since he seemed to be having involuntary muscle contractions and was in danger of falling over at one point, but eventually word spread that it was supposed to be a taunting victory dance.
To ward off public opinion, FBH wrote a sweet, apologetic public letter to Savior telling the big shot how much he admired him and if he'd maybe considering being friends with little old FBH.
Shortly after, he beat the superstar again, went backstage to grab a pair of sunglasses...
... and treated the audience to an orgy of pelvic thrusts. Love it or hate it, it was his thing. He had basically become the equivalent of a touchdown dancing NFL wide receiver. This kid was intent on putting the "Star" into StarCraft.
Although, alright, I get why they don't like to show skin now. 10+ hours of game practice doesn't leave a lot of room for push-ups, does it?
Not only does StarCraft now have taunting victory dances like a real sport, it even has devastating, steroids-like scandals. Many top players are under investigation for throwing games in a scandal being compared to the "say it ain't so" Black Sox, players including poor Savior, who first gets humiliated by FBH and then loses the rest of his career to this scandal.
And on a less depressing and more amusing note, a number of players are known for their "BM" (which apparently stands for "bad manners"--if you were expecting something else, you are a child, sir). One of them is IdrA, who as I mentioned above went to Korea at 18, and apparently is learning a great deal of maturity there. This is him in blue, his Zergs losing to a Terran player (red).
As you can see, even among low-ranked players, his classy behavior is well known.
Not only does he lash out when he loses, but even becomes angered at the beginning of a game just by seeing that his opponent has chosen to play the Terran race, which is one of the three races any player is supposed to be able to pick from. IdrA demands an apology for this heinous offense.
What a mouth. What does this cocky dude look like?
At this point I regret the gallon of ice cream I consumed because while I could never match these guys in actions-per-minute, I think I could probably, as a 5'4" woman, literally snap them in half.
For more modern ideas that were here before us, check out The End of Online Anonymity: Why Will You Be Freaking Out? and The 6 Worst Parts of Being Chinese (Not In The Stereotypes).
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