Going from virtual to reality, one EVE Online player is bucking the stereotype of gamers as lazy couch potatoes by using his in-game avatar game as inspiration to get fit and change his life. Marcus Dickinson, a self-proclaimed roleplayer, hit the gym and changed his eating habits in an effort to better resemble his EVE persona Roc Wieler, a retired military colonel with an imposing visage and impressive discipline. And the hard work has paid off; Dickinson has toned up and trimmed down.
What instigated the transformation? Dickinson noted that Roc Wieler is a brand, with his own blog and even merchandise for fans. However, a trip to Iceland for EVE Online FanFest in 2009 was a wake-up call; Dickinson said he felt nothing like Roc; he felt like a stereotypical geek. "Something snapped inside me, and I realized I wasn't being true to my brand. Why can't I be this character? Why can't I look like this?"
Using that as his inspiration, Dickinson changed his lifestyle and now does look more like Roc -- right down to the shades.