Rina Tan: How cosplay turns your dreams into reality

Rina Tan said it was an honor to be part of the Final Fantasy XV launch event.

Rina Tan: How cosplay turns your dreams into reality
Malaysian cosplayer, gamer and streamer Rina Tan

For Malaysian cosplayer Rina Tan, one of her most memorable cosplay experiences was definitely the official launch event of Final Fantasy XV (FFXV) in Malaysia in 2016.

"I was featured in Malaysia's FFXV launch event. My colleague and I were contacted by former Square Enix Game Designer Wan Hazmer, who worked on the FFXV game. We agreed to work with them and since that day my cosplay journey has been filled with excitement. Of course, we were very honored to have the opportunity to represent Malaysia at their launch event," Tan told Digital Life Asia.

FFXV and Malaysian culture

Rina Tan (right) and her fellow cosplayers with Final Fantasy XV Lead Game Designer of Culture Team Wan Hazmer (center) at the Final Fantasy XV official launch event in Malaysia.

The FFXV launch event not only celebrated the release of the then latest title in the iconic franchise, but also gave Hazmer, who is Malaysian, the opportunity to share how the game showcases Malaysian culture.

"During the launch event, Wan Hazmer presented on how Malaysian culture has been embedded into the game, showing examples of Malaysia's famous 'roti canai', 'teh tarik', and chicken rice being an actual food choice in the game. Furthermore, he added that these foods play an integral part in the game and it's not merely there for looks, as the food can be used to strengthen the protagonists. In fact, it could be the difference in winning and losing when it comes to boss battles."

Tan said that what made it truly memorable was being noticed by the company that publishes her favorite game.

Cosplaying for Riot Games

Leona from the video game Legends of Runeterra

This again happened when she was approached by Riot Games for Legends of Runeterra.

"This time I got the chance to feature this game with my best friend Ellemonade. When we got the call from our agency Team Salty that we were picked to cosplay for Riot, we were overjoyed as we both share a love for the game," she said.

When did Tan start cosplaying?

"I started out my cosplay journey in 2012, through a high school classmate who attended her first event in 2010. I decided to search and learn what cosplay was online and I fell in love with the craft of making and dressing up in cosplay," she said.

Asked to name which is her favorite among the characters she has cosplayed, Tan replied: "It's a very hard question. I don't tend to have a favorite cosplay because all the cosplay that I've done has a special place in my heart. But if I really have to be specific, it would be Final Fantasy XV's Luna Freya and any League of Legends cosplay that I've done."

From Pokémon to League of Legends

Apart from cosplaying, Tan is also an avid gamer.

"I like spending my time catching up on games with friends or spending some time making and creating new content for my viewers," she said.

Tan said her love affair with gaming started with the Game Boy Advance.

"My first ever introduction to gaming was the Gameboy Advance with Pokémon Ruby, Emerald, and Sapphire at a young age. My mom was the one that introduced me to the Pokémon and Digimon shows, and then my father was the one that introduced me to gaming. From handheld gaming, I then moved on to the PlayStation 2 and lastly to the PC where League of Legends was finally introduced to me," she said.

Asked what her favorite game of all time is, Tan replied: "League of Legends without a doubt."

Want to see more content from Tan? Check out her Instagram.

We're looking forward to seeing her in the next cosplay event!