It was after graduating from middle school that Singaporean Rithe first started cosplaying.
"I went to visit Anime Festival Asia and saw some cosplayers there. I wanted to try dressing up myself, and after the first try I just never stopped. I love that cosplay allows us to pretend to be a character we are not. You get to kind of experience being someone that's not you, someone with a super power, someone that's totally the opposite of you, and much more. It's just a very different experience every time you cosplay. And on top of that, it's the fastest way to let other people know what anime or game you are into, making meeting new friends and kickstarting a conversation much easier," Rithe told Digital Life Asia.
World Cosplay Summit
While she has already cosplayed more than 200 characters, Rithe said her favorite cosplay will always be Saber from Fate/stay night.
Asked what her most memorable cosplay experience has been so far, Rithe replied: "It has to be when I joined a competition called the World Cosplay Summit. It's a competition where you must make you own costume and perform in it. Me and my competition partner picked characters in armor and we needed to fight each other. So we had to make sure the costumes were accurate, and on top of that we had to be able to run, jump, and roll on the floor in those costumes.
"Plus the competition eventually brought us to represent Singapore in Japan, with cosplayers from 40 other countries. I made so many new friends through this competition, saw many more things out there in the world, and of course, I'd like to think I became closer friends with those that helped us through the first rounds in Singapore."
Rithe and gaming
Rithe is also into gaming, though she confessed that she has taken a short break.
"As I kind of have commitment issues with games, I always chose games I can finish under 10 hours (or games that don't require much grinding and building on characters – games I can just relax with). I think the first game I played on stream was Five Nights at Freddy's? It's a horror game with some wild lore," she said.
What's Rithe's favorite game of all time?
"Honestly, Harvest Moon. Or Animal Crossing. I like myself some adventure RPGs, but I like to play games to relax, and both of those games are super relaxing. But otherwise, I like to be exposed to new games all the time, so, for now, I will have no favorite!"
According to Rithe, she started streaming games in 2021.
"I love that part where my viewers interact with me actually! Sometimes they try to scare me, sometimes they help me though the puzzles, sometimes they just troll around, but overall I just feel like I get to play with my friends watching me. It's actually a little stressful. I always mess up the controls when people are watching me, but we always have a good laugh anyway," she said.
What message would Rithe like to share?
@ritheania im just playing around- #cosplay #Collage ♬ POP DANCE - Bensound
"When I was in studying, I never thought this would be my full-time commitment. In this day and age where all of us are encouraged to express the uniqueness of ourselves, any job is possible.
"Dressing up and gaming is something my younger self didn't have the courage to try, and I'm glad that I got that courage from kind internet strangers."
We're glad you found the courage, Rithe! Keep representing!