“I know certain people, they have goals when they create their brand, and whatever they do if it’s not just content creating, you know, overall anything with social media. I know people have goals and you know some people are doing it for the money, some people are doing it to start their own business and such, and I’m just, I’m really just here to make friends with everyone.”SuperNamu
The two creative fields of gaming and cosplay overlap more than meets the eye, which is why we believe our next feature subject for this series is the perfect ambassador for both. We’re excited to share with you more about live streamer and speedrunner SuperNamu for Day 4 of our ongoing Black Excellence in Gaming series.
After originally starting out on YouTube, Namu made the transition over to Twitch for her live streaming endeavors. With a background in video editing, she decided to use the former platform more for recorded and edited content than for streaming as it was less user friendly for going live. Making that change has helped her improve and focus more on streaming while also giving her a better understanding of how social media works (though we both admitted that we have no idea how Instagram works). In addition to video editing and live streaming, SuperNamu is also a talented cosplayer who enjoys creating looks of characters from games she enjoys.
She is a proud member of many communities, such as Black Girl Gamers and Scream Reapers. Namu learned of and became involved with BGG shortly after she began streaming, and has since joined their weekly stream team roster to their official channel, participated in some charity streams, and has become one of their Twitch moderators. She recently joined Scream Reapers, as they focus on horror games, her second favorite genre. Being a part of these communities has helped her further develop her interests in gaming and cosplay, as well as allowing her to meet and connect with other gamers and live streamers like herself.
A longtime fan of JRPGs (Japanese Role-Playing Games), Namu has been playing Final Fantasy since she was 4 years old, with her first video game ever being Final Fantasy 7. She is also a fan of the Kingdom Hearts series by Square Enix. The main aspect of these games that make them her favorite are the characters and plot, stating that if the backstories of a character and the story are strong she’ll stay up all night just to finish a game. Not only are they some of her favorite games to play, Namu will also live stream them to her channel, including her attempts to speedrun some of these titles.
It was in 2019 that SuperNamu began her speedrun adventures; after watching various YouTube channels do speedruns of a variety of games and titles and talking with her community about it, she became inspired after watching one video where a 40+ hour JRPG was cut down to around two hours. After doing a full week’s worth of research, taking notes, and watching videos, Namu speedran Final Fantasy 7 for the very first time during her Twitch Affiliate anniversary stream.
“I think was in April, and as a celebratory stream of that I speedran FF7 for the first time and I think I got like, two and half hours or something which put me in like 20, 25th place or something on the leaderboards, and I was like, this is really fun!”– SuperNamu, from Off Colour Interview
After finishing the game in record time, she describes being “floored” at all the glitches and mechanics that one can use to skip around the game and finish it in such a short amount of time. Later the next year, she learned that there were now more ways that players could cut down their speedrun time in the game, and after doing more research she sat down again to give it a try. This time, she clocked in her speedrun at two hours and three minutes! Her next goal after taking a well earned rest is to learn how to speedrun Kingdom Hearts and how to properly race her way through that series.
While she may be a longtime fan of Final Fantasy, SuperNamu isn’t one to shy away from talking about the game’s shortcomings when it comes to representation. She brought up that the only diversity amongst the protagonists of the game, who are almost always fair skinned with blonde, black, or brown hair with blue eyes, is the shape of their face. There has also only been one woman protagonist in the franchise’s long history. When Final Fantasy 16 was announced, she posted a picture of all the main protagonists from the games and said it would be nice to have some diversity. The gaming scene being the delightful way that it is, she subsequently received backlash from people all over the world coming to her post just to tell her how wrong she was.
While Namu wasn’t going to spend time arguing with each and every individual, she stands by what she said and still talks about the need for more representation whenever the opportunity arises.
“…they also came to me saying stuff like ‘that’s why you have MMOs, that’s why you have FF14 where you can make your character any shade you want, etc, etc. That should be enough.’ But that’s an MMO, that’s the point of an MMO, I’m not asking for more MMOs. I enjoy Final Fantasy 14, but when I say we need more diversity, I’m not just, you know, what a lot of people would assume I want a Black person, I’m not just talking about that, I would like to see, of any race, or what is supposed to be assumed that race, in Final Fantasy. And people are just so in their feelings, but it’s such an important concept, and I try to bring that up a lot in my streams to be honest.”– SuperNamu, from Off Colour Interview
When it comes to Black History Month and how the gaming scene approaches this time of the year, SuperNamu would love to see the opportunities that are offered to Black creators happen more often year round as well. When being recognized and included only during 28 days out of the year, it can be annoying to feel like you only have this window to advance one’s career or interests, especially when these same opportunities would not have been brought forward at any other time than February. She expressed that more consistent and fair outreach like many other content creators get year round would be the best way for Black creators to get recognition and be rewarded for their work and dedication.
With a lot of dedication to her craft and bravery to stand up and speak out on a topic that others would rather dismiss, here at Off Colour we were to happy to have the chance to speak with SuperNamu about their journey as a live streamer, speedrunner, and cosplayer. We wish her all the best of luck for when she takes on Kingdom Hearts, and we hope that through her efforts to have open discussions about representation in Final Fantasy and other games we’ll be able to see more chance when it comes to diversity and inclusion for characters and story.
On behalf of the Off Colour team, we thank her for taking the time to chat with us and share more about her path as a creator!
Thank you so much for reading, and we hope you enjoy the rest of our series!