By Hana Khalyleh – Feb. 26, 2015
Phoenix Gaymers co-chair Shane Blissett said his favorite games are generally from the fighting genre and high action titles like the Call of Duty series, while Brandon Cooper is more of a nostalgia junkie and prefers the classic Super Nintendo games. They both find common ground in the Super Smash Bros. series, which makes for a competitively fun time.
After more than a year of talking on a dating site. Cooper and Blissett started dating when they met in October 2014, It was around then that Cooper started a more active engagement in the Phoenix Gaymers, a meetup group that encourages social interaction within the gay gamer community. Since then, he said, he has been able to find new connections in the gaming community, developing friendships from the Gaymers that he wishes were there when he was growing up.
“I started coming out when I was 17,” Cooper said. “If I had had someone else to relate to, someone who had that common ground in gaming with me growing up, things would have been much easier for me.”
During their first monthly gaming party of the new year, Jan. 17, Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe” started blasting on a radio carried by a member and the Gaymers were urged to follow him outside.
Waiting there was Blissett, a few personal friends and six members of the Phoenix Gaymers who then launched into a flash mob-style performance to “Marry You” by Bruno Mars’s. Then Blissett turned to Cooper, got down on one knee and popped the question
“It was an instant ‘yes,’” Cooper said. “It doesn’t feel like I’ve only known him a short time … It feels like I’ve found the right one.”
The couple’s wedding is set for April 13 and there’s sure to be more than a few Phoenix Gaymers in the audience. (Read more about the Phoenix Gaymers in “Multiplayer Action Meets the Real World.”)