Level Up! Live 2008, World Trade Center Metro Manila
Senator Gil Puyat Avenue corner Roxas Boulevard / Macapagal Boulevard, Pasay City

Last October 18 and 19 the Philippines’ biggest online gaming company, Level Up! Games Philippines hosted this year’s biggest gaming event- Level Up! Live 2008. Level Up! Live is an annual event celebrating the company’s different online games and their gamers through fun (okay, pretty geeky) activities, promos, programs and competitions, both offline and online. The biggest game in Level Up! Philippines’ list is Ragnarok Online.

Ragnarok ruled computer gaming in the Philippines when it landed 5 years ago. It may not be the gamer’s top choice right now, but it continues to command probably the biggest loyal fanbase, thanks to the continuous updates and expansion of Korean Gravity Corp, creator of Ragnarok Online.

Every year Ragnarok holds a competition among the strongest national and regional gaming groups or guilds. Aptly called Ragnarok World Championship (duh), the event’s objective is to honor the toughest gamers of at most 23 different countries across the globe. Nations, and in cases like European RO, regions, hold separate competitions to get their representatives for the global arena. This year, World Championship was held in the Metro Manila. And Level Up! Philippines evidently made use of this International event to augment their already massive annual celebration.

There were booths set-up by Level Up!, by guilds of the different online games, by event sponsors. There’s an Internet cafe, activity areas where one can play arcade games, do rock climbing, do trampolines, sumo wrestle. There are people dressed up as game characters you can take pictures with. It’s a chance to have a reason to meet your online friends in person. There are prizes to be won through parlor games inspired by local noontime shows with a gamer twist. In between everything else there are more prizes to be won through exciting battles among the best, projected in the areana’s multiple screens.

Tell me to stop if I sound way too geeky/scary already. Anyway, the pictures, I realized I really have to work on taking event and indoor photographs. 1) a look at the venue’s stage 2) the RWC 08 poster 3) Idol Lee Myung-Jin, Ragnarok manhwa (Korean manga) creator, signing my copy (that’s my sister though, after persuading her to cosplay) 4) cosplayers The Frost Jokers performing on stage (as projected on that screen.

I hope I had kick-ass cosplay pics but I don’t so I’d be posting a collage of sorts like this some other time.

Oh and by the way, Ragnarok World Championship results- Team Philippines bowed down to Team Thailand in the semis after defeating the German and Japanese delegations. Team Thailand eventually became the champions, after defeating the equally formidable Team South Korea in a best of 5 match. Team Philippines lost to Team Indonesia in a best of 3 battle for 3rd place. 4th best. Just like my favorite Team Portugal last World Cup.