Fainting’s cold Embrace – Day 2

As my adventure went on, I was led to the Rustorbo City gym where I knew I would get a chance to test my skills with the toughest trainer the city has to offer. I enter the gym to get a glimpse of what I’ll be up against. Fossils, ambers and bones of different sizes filled the gym. I could tell it was a rock type gym because of its theme. The attendant greeted me and confirmed what I had earlier just speculated, it was indeed a Rock-type gym, which meant KungFu Chick wouldn’t be much help getting through this one.

Before I took on the gym, I decided to go exploring a little bit more. Going east led me to Route 116. I encountered new trainers which I beat off easily with KungFu Chick’s type advantage. I decided to pick up a new Pokemon, the first one I could find was a Nincada. Wurmie handily weakened it, not after too long I was welcoming a new member of the group. “Mini Ipis” I called him, a fine addition to my team as I hope to someday evolve a Shedinja from him.

Knowing what I was up against, I took some time to train in the tall grass hoping that Wurmie would learn a Grass-type attack soon. Before long Wurmie began evolving from a small Wurmple into a Cascoon. A few more trainer battles later, Wurmple was again evolving into a Beautifly.

Even as a fully evolved Pokemon (my first in this game) I still wasn’t confident enough to send Wurmie against the gym leader. It was when Wurmie learned Absorb that I felt it was finally go-time.

Three minor trainers blocked the way but they posed no threat to Wurmie and her Absorbs. One by one my team and I downed them. As I faced the gym leader Roxanne, I was confident that Wurmie was my key to a clear victory.

Gym Leader Battle: Roxanne

Gym Leader Pokemon: Geodude, Nosepass

Without hesitation I sent out Wurmie, brimming with confidence this would be an easy fight. Roxanne sent out her Geodude. Both Pokemon were of the same level but I knew I had the upper hand because of typing. Immediately I went in for the kill, “ABSORB” and before it could even move, Geodude was knocked out. Good job, Wurmie!

She then sends in Nosepass. I was sure that it would end up the same way again. Immediately I sent Wurmie to attack with another ABSORB. It was super effective! But Nosepass stood its ground. I began thinking of how to go about my next moves when suddenly, the opposing Nosepass unleashed its ROCK TOMB. In an instant, Wurmie was buried beneath the rocks. Knocked out, gone, all because of my arrogance. It was devastating.

But there was little time to mourn Wurmie’s loss. She shall be avenged but first I had to get out of this battle alive.

Knowing I no longer had the type advantage, I called on Ziggydawg to lay some traps. Ziggydawg used SAND ATTACK to better evade Nosepass’ hard hits, but a TACKLE still got through. Ziggydawg was hurt bad but I just had to have faith that the sand would blind Nosepass just enough to survive. Nosepass started buffing with HARDEN as I had Ziggydawg continue pouring in the sand, until another ROCK TOMB managed to hit, knocking Ziggydawg out. Goodbye my friend, you did your part well.

I was getting desperate now, but risking my starter KungFu Chick would be meaningless at this point. Spit wasn’t going to fare any better either, so I just went with my gut and threw out Mini Ipis. Nosepass again tried to TACKLE but fortunately all the sand Ziggydawg threw at him is paying off. All Mini Ipis had to do was LEECH LIFE from Nosepass a little at a time. It was barely hurting Nosepass, but it was all Mini Ipis could do, LEECH LIFE, dodge, LEECH LIFE, avoid, LEECH LIFE, avoid. Eventually Nosepass was visibly weakened but Mini Ipis was too tired to use LEECH LIFE again. With all my fingers crossed, I sent Mini Ipis on a scary mission, TACKLE, avoid, TACKLE, avoid, TACKLE, avoid, Nosepass was knocked out!

By the skin of our teeth we survived but not without casualties.

Roxanne proceeds to congratulate me, but my thoughts are with my fallen Pokemon. She awards me with a badge which would let higher level Pokemon follow me even outside of battle. I didn’t really care, I wanted Wurmie and Ziggydawg back.

GYM LEADER BATTLE WON!

Badge earned: Boulder badge

Pokemon lost: Wurmie, Ziggydawg

As I left the gym, I hurried to the nearest Pokecenter. There I laid my Pokemon to rest in the GRAVEYARD. You have served me well, my dear friends. Until we meet again.

When I left the Pokecenter, a man in a red get up zoomed past me. I followed him to the direction of Rustuf Tunnel where some miners complained that he was disrupting their work. I went in to see what I could make of it. It was pitch black inside the tunnel but I could barely make out the figure of the man I saw run in. Slowly I crept toward him until we were face to face. In a panic he threw out a Pokemon, but was no match for KungFu Chick. We made quick work of him and he ran out of the tunnel in sheer terror. As I turned my attention back onto the tunnel, I noticed a small Winggul on the floor. I wondered who it belonged to so I picked it up and brought it out of the tunnel with me. To my surprise a man ran toward me and just picked up the Pokemon in my arms. He then turned away and left.

Little did I know that man would be the key to continuing my adventure.

Adventure started on 11/21/2014

ID No.: 33991

Date: 11/21/2014

Trainer: Toby

Pokemon added: Mini Ipis (Nincada)

Pokemon in party: Kungfu Chick Lv. 19, Spit Lv. 15, Mini Ipis Lv. 11

Number of badges: 1

Play time: 3:37

Graveyard: Wurmie, Ziggydawg

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A Journey begins

“I’m a boy.”

One of the many things I had to tell one Professor Burch while sitting at the back of a moving truck. When we finally made it to the new house in Hoenn there was so much relief, my journey would finally start after such a long wait. Machops from the moving company handled the unloading of the furniture so all I had to do was head up to my room and start exploring. Mother called me over to see Father on the telly, we just barely missed a news report about him. She went on telling me how Father’s old friend lived right next door and that I should see him.

I oblige and make my way next door. I enter the house only to find only the lady of the house, she tells me her husband has gone exploring so I search for him with haste. As I enter route 101, there was a cry for help. A man in a lab coat was being chased around by a Zigzagoon. Immediately I lept into action, saw a satchel bag on the floor with three Pokeballs. After much consideration I picked Torchic and named him “Kungfu Chick”. To the rescue I was, battling off the Zigzagoon until I finally got it to faint.

Fast forward and I got to meet Professor Burch’s daughter May who had a large ribbon on her head. We became friends and she taught me the ropes to becoming a Pokemon Master. Soon I found myself trekking forward, into the wild grass attempting my first catch.

As I walked along the tall grass in Route 101, a wild Pokemon emerged! It was a Wurmple. The small frail thing was no match for KungFu Chick, so I summoned my trusty starter to weaken my target. With a tackle Wurmple was already weakened so it was time to whip out a Pokeball. After a few wiggles, the Pokeball shut tight and captured the little worm. I name her “Wurmie”.

With KungFu Chick and Wurmie in hand, I started exploring toward Route 102. After beating two trainers, a Zigzagoon jumped out at me while I was walking through the tall grass. KungFu Chick sprang into action with a tackle. I saw that the wild Zigzagoon was hurt so I threw a Pokeball but it broke free! I tried yet another Pokeball but to no avail. Not wanting to risk knocking out the Zigzagoon, I switched Wurmie in to chip away at it. A few weak tackles later, I had Zigzagoon ready to be captured. Out went the Pokeball and in went the Zigzagoon. I named him “Ziggy dawg” because that’s what he is.

More adventures await, but the first day of adventuring had to come to an end.

Adventure started on 11/21/2014

ID No.: 33991

Date: 11/21/2014

Trainer: Toby

Pokemon added: Torchic [Kungfu Chick] (Professor Burch), Wurmple [Wurmie] (Route 101), Zigzagoon [Ziggydawg] (Route 102)

Pokemon in party: Kungfu Chick Lv. 9, Wumie Lv. 3, Ziggydawg Lv. 5

Number of badges: 0

Play time: 0:46

Graveyard: None

Trainers defeated: 2

Pokemon caught 2IMG_4557.JPG

The Omega Ruby experience

Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire has just been released and with a bit of prodding from my ever understanding girl friend, I was able to get a copy on launch date in the Philippines.

A long cue later, Pokemon Omega Ruby with the little Primal Groudon figurine was mine.

Since Pokemon X and Y introduced me to the competitive scene, it is likely my goal will be to complete the story of Pokemon Omega Ruby as quickly as possible just to access the competitive tools. Just to add a bit more spice to my adventure, I’ll be playing using what is known as the Nuzlocke Challenge.

The Nuzlocke Challenge is an unofficial set of added rules to playing Pokemon that makes it more difficult and more restrictive, reminiscent of more tactical RPG’s such as the Tactics series, Fire Emblem or X-Com. A few basic rules include considering a Pokemon “dead” when it faints in battle, this means releasing it (or for more forgiving versions, permanently PC boxing it) into the wild, capturing only the first Pokemon encountered in an area (if it dies or flees, you got nothing) and using only captured Pokemon.

For this play through, I’ll be following only the basic rules with the added rule of giving each Pokemon I catch a nickname. I realize doing this would drastically stunt my Pokedex progress, but what the heck, I’ll be able to fix it once I’m done. With a ready team of competitive Pokemon just itching to be Pokebank transferred, it won’t be difficult to complete the Dex eventually.

Challenge rules:

  • Nickname all caught Pokemon
  • Use only caught Pokemon
  • Catch only first Pokemon encountered in each area
  • If Pokemon feints in battle, release that Pokemon
  • No repeat Pokemon

So, let’s get started!

Adventure started on 11/21/2014

ID No.: 33991

Date: 11/21/2014

Trainer: Toby

Pokemon added: Torchic [Kungfu Chick] (Professor Burch)

Who is the Filipino Gamer?

Video games is a big part of my life. I wake up in the morning next to my Nintendo 3DS facing our TV set with a Playstation 3 connected to it. I have a small library of games for my 3DS and a slightly bigger one for the Playstation 3 because it’s meshed with games my brothers bought. On my Youtube subscriptions list are channels ranging from moviebob, Game Theory, FeministFrequency (yes, I watched her videos), Extra Credits, Angry Joe, Hey Ashe Whatcha Playin aside from the official Youtube channels of Nintendo, Playstation and other game publishers. Like the thousands if not millions of Filipinos like me, I am what is known as a “gamer”.

While the term “gamer” is already filled with many questions as to what it actually means, it has made me curious as to who compose the Philippine gaming community. Since coming out of the abyss of illegality following the Martial Law era, video games have boomed in the Philippines with many Filipinos (myself included) turning it into a way of life. With the advent of Facebook and other social media outlets, the community of gamers in the Philippines has become more public and also become more connected. As the community continues growing, the question remains, “Who is the Filipino gamer?”

An outsider looking into Filipino gaming would see gamers as the loud, rowdy, cuss-like-a-pirate hoodlums that frequent computer shops playing Counter-Strike, DotA, League of Legends or similarly themed games. This has become the sort of poster-image of what a Filipino gamer is, but there has never been an actual study conducted on what games Filipinos tend to play more. In fact, I can’t recall any study having been done about Filipino gamers.

The Study

I’ve been planning to do this for some time already, until one night I just said, “Screw it, let’s get it on!” I created a survey intended for multiple users to fill in with their responses. I posted the survey form on different Facebook groups and forums, both gaming related and non-gaming related. I also sent it to some of my friends to get a bigger sample size. The aim was to get as random a sample as possible to draw as neutral an output as possible.

All of the results are based solely on what the respondents reported.

Methodology

The study was conducted using a random sampling method through a survey form that was allowed to be posted on different forums on Facebook. Respondents answered the survey form and their answers were tallied automatically via the Google Drive spreadsheet. The forums were chosen based on their general topics, some were related to video games while others were related to free discussions.

By the time the survey was closed to the public and results finalized, the survey had 570 respondents. All respondents were anonymous as their name was at no point asked.

From the tallied data, analysis will come in the form of composition information, preference ranking, confessed perception and exposition. The exposition data will undergo content analysis in order to discern possible patterns arising from the responses.

Results
As of press time 11:00PM Nov. 4, 2014 nearly 48 hours since the survey was first published, the tallies are as follows:

Total number of respondents: 528
Margin of error: 1% (to account for responses given by non-Filipinos)

Sex split:

male-female

Male – 87%
Female– 11%

I made a slight error here. It seems many respondents skipped this part resulting in the missing 1%. I’ve changed it so that you can’t skip this question anymore.

This is somewhat not surprising. Gaming has always been viewed as an all-boys club but recent studies have shown that there is a balance in the sex demographic. Apparently on online Facebook forums, males simply dominate the forums. This might not reflect the actual male-female ratio of gamers in the Philippines as it may be found that females are just generally less active on online forums but more active in-game. More studies have to be done to make this finding more conclusive.

Most popular platform:
PC (Master Race)76%

This question asks which platform people use when playing video games. As expected, the PC or personal computer is the most popular gaming platform in the Philippines. With the plethora of computer shops catering to the public, giving gamers momentary access to PC games at reasonable prices, it’s easy to see why the PC is a popular platform.

Most popular console:
Playstation 349%

After the popularity of the Playstation 2 in the Philippines because of the availability of pirated games for it, Sony was able to keep their audience even after introducing new disc technology that set piracy back a few years. More than half of the respondents claim they play on the Playstation 3, possibly because of its availability in computer shops and partly because of the free Playstation Network as compared to the Xbox pay subscription. Between Sony and Microsoft, Filipinos go for Sony.

Most patronized distribution outlet:
Datablitz71%

Filipino gamers buy from Datablitz. With an overwhelming majority of respondents stating they purchase games from Datablitz, it seems the long time gaming retailer is a name no gamer can go without knowing. Even in the days when pirated discs were abundant, Datablitz stood its ground and refused to cave in to the pressures of the market. When the 6th generation of consoles hit the shelves and pirated discs were hard to come by, Datablitz reaped the fruits of its labor and became one of the most trusted stores for Filipino gamers.

Most owned gaming platform:
PC68%

It seems that Filipinos not only like to play on PC’s but also tend to own one. Probably because it’s easier to justify than other gaming platforms, the PC is a gaming staple for Filipino homes. With good graphics cards for video editing also comes good graphics for gaming. Rigs can usually be built for work and play at the same time, so for some, the rig pays for itself. It’s also notable that as of press time, 89.5% of respondents who claim they play games on a PC also claim they own a PC, which means Filipinos.

Most owned console:
Playstation 341%

Like the PC, with more people playing on the Playstation 3, there was a higher chance more people owned one.

Modders:
No consoles modified – 56%
Some consoles modified – 38%

It’s not a secret, video game piracy is rampant in the Philippines, and why wouldn’t it be? Until the rise of online gaming and massive game worlds, there was nearly no distinguishable difference between playing on a licensed disc and a pirated or modded version of the game. Most of the respondents opted to keep their consoles un-modified but a 38% have in one way or another tweaked their consoles to run 3rd party software or games. The rest, I’m just going to assume they’re PC gamers.

Age:
18-2868%

Most respondents declared their ages to be within the ranges 18-22 (35%) and 23-28 (33%). This does not come as a surprise as this is usually the age range of people who engage in online discussions and are active on forums. The age range also indicates that most of the respondents are in that point in life where people usually start actually developing career paths.

How educated are gamers:
Bachelor’s degree holders 35%
Master’s degree holders26%

Filipino gamers are educated, or at least the ones that answered the survey. Among all the respondents, most declared to have finished a bachelor’s degree while in 2nd place are those who claim to be master’s degree holders. If consistent with actual trends, this might be an indicator that people do not “out grow” games as they become more educated. In fact, the number of respondents that claim to have finished high school is outnumbered by those that claim to have finished college.

Not a student’s pass-time:
Students44%
Non-students50%

The community is not overwhelmingly dominated by professionals or dropouts as the divide is nearly down the middle.

Favorite games:
Pokemon48%

At first I thought it was because my sample consisted of only the Pokemon groups, but even with the inclusion of other gaming groups the results stayed the same. Pokemon, followed by DotA is the most commonly played game in the Philippines as reported by the respondents.

Importance of gaming:

importance graph

This graph illustrates the perception of Filipinos toward gaming. It’s apparently a bit important with many answering on the high end of the scale.

Importance of graphics:

chart

This shows how Filipinos give importance to graphics. Most rank it at “8” on a scale of “10” with “10” being the highest. It shows graphics is a consideration for games.

Importance of story:

story

This shows that narrative and story is an integral part of Filipino gamer preference. Filipinos like stories in their games, apparently. Which is nice.

The findings here only represent a very rough representation of the Filipino gaming community. The study will continue to receive data from other respondents and will be updated accordingly should any new trends arise.

The summary of the raw data and other data analysis will be posted when the survey has concluded.

The researcher realizes there are a lot of flaws to the methodology and also analysis. I hope that with this kick starter study, future studies will be made that will improve on the flaws present in this study. I also hope that the speculations raised by this study with quantified data can be useful to identifying areas of interest for future research on the topic.

The “G” word:

Yes, I’m a gamer – 89%

A vast majority of respondents identified themselves as gamers. 20% of females did not identify as gamers. Only 9% of males did not identify as gamers. It shows that females had a higher tendency to avoid the “gamer” label for one reason or another. Other identified as “gamer girl” or “not so much” as though being female made it more difficult to carry the gamer label.

A big thank you to all the respondents and the groups where I posted the survey which got more than 500 responses in 2 days.

  • Pokemon Filipino Players United
  • Filipino Freethinkers
  • Philippine Atheists and Agnostics Society
  • Rational Filipino
  • BlizzHeroesPH
  • Playstation Philippines
  • Falcons 3DS
  • Humanist Alliance Philippines International
  • Saksi ni Professor Sycamore
  • Smash Bros Philippines
  • Pilipinas Got Pokemon
  • Pinoy 3DS
  • Starcraft PH
  • Diablo PH
  • The Adamson Chronicle
  • All my friends of Facebook who took the survey