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MMR is Sexy

Today my editor forwarded me this post on the Dota 2 subreddit, and long story short it’s about a man who wants to propose to his partner but only after he reached 5k MMR in Dota 2.

Can we talk about the recent upsurge of gaming playing a part in the relationship dynamic among young people? Because it’s a thing.

With gaming in the mainstream more than ever, playing video games is no longer something you have to hide among your peers and scurry into the darkness that was nerd-dom. Almost everyone plays at least one game of some description, and with esports being a thing, more people are comfortable in coming out to support their favorites games in places where the sun actually reaches.

Being good at competitive video games is something people brag about regularly, and it seems like the gaming phenom has given birth to something I cannot even begin to fully comprehend: Gaming prowess as a measure of attractiveness.

My take on this attraction to high MMR players comes from a collective understanding of social status. Among people who play games like League of Legends or even Dota 2, there is a trend where MMR equates to social status. Being in diamond or masters means you’re objectively better than almost all the players on the same server, and your rank is something you wear like a badge of sorts. Social status has been something that was inherently attractive in human history, especially more so if you’re invested in that hierarchy. You want to be better than everyone. You want to be associated with someone who is better than everyone. You want to be around “objectively good” players so you can maybe become that good player yourself.

As avid consumers of esports, I’m sure many of us spent time and money into our gaming habits because it became more than just a hobby. Its become something that has become so ingrained into our daily lives that we care about how we perform and, to an extent, how others perform. Being a gamer is something of a life style choice, and we love every second of every day we spend playing our favorite competitive games. Well, most of us do anyways.

I don’t think its incredibly farfetched that relationships can bloom on an especially salty day on Summoner’s Rift, on the surface of Korhal, or in the mystical world of Azeroth. Power (or perceived power) is sexy. Even if your power is made up of 0s and 1s to make up a digital avatar in which you can use to assert your dominance over other players. It still makes someone’s collection of 0s and 1s better than anyone else’s.

Besides, why hang around silvers when you can go around telling people you’re going out with a diamond?


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