Guess I’ve been keeping you guys waiting for a series post huh. I’ll do my best to have at least one up every week, but that’ll just be a general guide. Don’t want to guarantee specific days or make promises that I can’t keep. This blog thing is something I want to be comfortable and have fun with anyway.
Here’s the first non-Japanese-comic-series post woop! One of the few aussie friends I have (now isn’t that pathetic OTL) recommended it 🙂
Manhwa: The Gamer 「THE 게이머」
The Gamer is an action, fantasy, martial arts, comedy, supernatural Korean webtoon written by Sung San-Young and illustrated by Sang-Ah. It started publishing in 2013 and is currently ongoing with 65 chapters thus far.
Han Jee-Han, a normal high school student, suddenly develops a special power where his entire world is shifted into a game-like setting. He can see the names and power levels of people above their heads, look at the stats of items, get abilities and even level up! The story follows Jee-Han, The Gamer, as he discovers how to use this power and stay alive when introduced to the world of Ability users.
WARNING: Nothing really. Action, so there’s violence. But that’s it.
Probably what really got me into this series was the novelty of the story: In that if you are gamer of any sort, you’d be able to understand all the lingo and jargon used as well as empathise with the protagonist to a certain extent. The “If you were a game character” plot definitely isn’t all that unique, but depending on the way the story’s developed, I think it will always be really cool.
I liked how The Gamer developed. It’s extremely progressive and you see the slow, but steady growth of the protagonist throughout the series as he learns to handle his new found power and cope with the unexpected situations that come with it. It all happens in the ‘real world’, so it’s not actually as far-fetched as one might imagine, but still very well-thought out. With so much information to be explained, there are times when it can get a little wordy, but the way everything is clearly explained and portrayed, it’s really easy to ‘get’. You don’t even need to bother reading the lengthy explanations to be able to understand the relationships and skills etc.
To be honest though, the story flow of The Gamer is a little choppy at the beginning. Chapters cut off from weird ends sometimes and the next one suddenly starts from a new situation that the protagonist suddenly appears in. I guess in this way things progressed fast and it was interesting, but I thought it felt pretty jarring with a lack of consistency. But it definitely gets better later on. Either that, or you get used to it.
One difference between Korean webtoons and Japanese manga is that Korean webtoons are usually fully coloured as compared to Japanese manga which are usually in monochrome. Considering The Gamer is a relatively light-hearted series
(even with the chance of death), the colouring style is pretty vibrant and bright. There are limited backgrounds, with more effort being put into the characters’ actions and expressions, effects and atmospheres as well as paneling angles. The great perspectives in panel angles contribute to the dynamic and easy-to-follow action scenes. ‘Comic-relief’ moments are pretty darn cute too.
This is a pretty rare story in which the protagonist is
probably my favourite character. Even with his power and all the shit that happens to him, he keeps his down-to-earth personality and priorities. His best friend is pretty damn appealing too. I just wish the series included as well-developed female characters…
“Wouldn’t it be great if life was a game?”
That’d be totally cool and all, but I guess in the end, I’d probably be just like Jee-Han:
“If someone asked me if this is honestly okay with me, I would simply answer: “No. It’s not.” “