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otaku rating system!

Produced by combining Squaresoft rpgs, Otaku no Video, lack of sleep, and a desperate need for content in the witch's cauldron that is the otaku mind.

There is an rpg class for almost every type of person. . . but none for the otaku. I have always thought it tremendously unjust that there is no system to classify the degeneration experienced by we, the faithful otaku.

So, for great justice, Matt, Chris, and I decided to remedy the situation and produce a scale.

[ general ideas ]

Otaku come in so many flavors that to classify them universally is very difficult. There are manga otaku, anime otaku, computer otaku, linux otaku, even star trek otaku. (Although I don't think trekkies anywhere would accept the term.)

So, instead of creating specific lists for each flavor of otaku, we generalized all otaku activities into a universal otaku system.

Levels 1 and 2 describe the mundanes, those who lack the focus demanded of an otaku. Levels 3 through 8 are. . . otaku. Levels 9 through 13 are the great otaku, the leaders, those who have evolved beyond fanboy games to become some greater, nobler. . . something special.

[ the list ]

  1. Minor familiarity.
    Most people are level one otaku in many things. They know of the subject, and what it is, but have no real interest.
  2. Some interest.
    A person at this stage may watch anime when it is on tv, or read translated manga when a friend lends it to them, but there is no further involvement.
  3. Great interest.
    The chosen subject now becomes very important to the otaku's life. He is able to ignore others completely when confronted by the object of his obsession. He will go out of his way to bask in the glow provided by the subject. This condition worsens as the otaku moves up the scale, increasing as sqrt(x), leveling off as one reaches higher levels.
  4. Compulsive buying.
    To me, the worst part of being an otaku is the constant drain on my bank account. The otaku generally feels compelled to buy objects related to his obsession, with this compulsion becoming stronger and less discriminate as the otaku reaches higher levels. (To the extent allowed by available finances.)
  5. Circle
    A solitary otaku will frequently reach a limit to his possible advancement at this point. The otaku must become part of a group.
  6. Convention.
    The otaku's interest is now so great that he travels and attends conventions about the object of his obession. There, he may enjoy the company of others like him without once having to interact with the mundane world. (An increasingly difficult task.)
  7. Participation.
    The otaku is now so enraptured by his obsession that he begins to contribute to it. For many, this involves staffing at a convention, translation, or artwork
  8. Leadership.
    At this point the otaku decides that he must make an original contribution. Thus, he will begin to gather people around him and create something of greater scope than he could individually. (cf. transition to level 5.)
  9. Otakishin ~ Ronin
    This level and those above can only be reached by consensus. They do not necessarily require tremendous knowledge. Rather, these levels are for the leaders, those without whom the culture with be much poorer.An otaku at this level is fairly well-known and respected, as someone who has done a good deal to advance the community.
  10. Otakishin ~ Daimyo
    A lord among otaku; a person of tremendous influence known to virtually the entire community.
  11. Otakishin ~ Shogun
    We estimate that there are no more than 12 people at this level for any given subject. They are the l33t of the otaku, frequently well-known even in the mundane world. They lead major projects that are central to the otaku culture, and are generally regarded with awe.
  12. Otaking!
    This is the often-controversial mortal leader of the movement. Not all otaku groups have an otaking.
  13. Otakami
    This is the spiritual leader of the movement. It is not possible to become an otakami while alive. The spirit of such a person gives definition and direction to the subject. Most otaku disciplines do not have a person in this position.