Gaming and Gay Romance

Raythe says,

This is a gaming rant, my friends.  I love games like The Witcher 3, Skyrim, Dragon Age and also the Mass Effect series.  Dragon Age and Mass Effect are known for weaving romance into their huge stories and doing it well (for the most part). They are also known for including LGBT options for love interests.  This is my crack, because it’s a place where I get to live out my fantasies about being a space marine or kickass swordsman, and romance the gents or ladies, too.

Mass Effect: Andromeda just came out.  It touted itself as porn in space, and loudly hinted that there would be a great deal of LGBT content …

It didn’t exactly go down that way. Check out this article on Kotaku: Underwhelming Gay Romance Options In Mass Effect: Andromeda Disappoint Many Fans.

While some understood LGBT fans’ disappointment (even though they didn’t care about the gay romance options themselves), there were others who felt we were asking for too much.  They argued the following:

(1) Characters Aren’t Believable If They Are All Bisexual

The argument is that not everybody in real life is bisexual; therefore, it is more realistic and makes the game more realistic to not have every character available to be romanced by a male main character or a female main character.

There are loads of things wrong with this argument.

First, this is a GAME and, as such, should allow as much individuation and choice as possible.

Second, depending on what I imagine, the characters I romance could be gay in one play-thru, straight in another, asexual in another, bisexual in another and so forth and so on.  I don’t know their inner lives UNLESS I relate to them in a certain way.

Also, you don’t always know what characters you’re going to fall for.  There are plenty of times when I decided mid-game that I wanted to romance X character because they just won me over (Jaal is a good example in MEA, but Tali is another in the original trilogy).

But if the characters have a “set” sexuality, I may not be able to romance them.  My choices are to give up hope of romancing that character, or begin the game all over with the “correct” gender of main character.

This makes simply no sense.  This is a game where choice is supposed to be king.  Let me choose!

(2) You Should Be Grateful For Getting Anything

This argument is that Bioware gave those of us who want LGBT romance options at least one romanceable partner in MEA, and that should be enough. After all, those of us who want the LBGT options are in the minority.  We shouldn’t expect to get everything that the straight people get.

This assumes that those who want LGBT options are second-class gamers and shouldn’t be treated with the same thoughtfulness as white, straight guys.

There are actually a lot of people out there who do not fit that demographic, something over like 50%, who play Bioware games … but I digress.  That’s their argument and it’s shit.

It also assumes that white, straight guys don’t want LGBT in their games either.

I can’t find the blog post right now, but one of the most thoughtful posts I’ve found about including gay characters was from a straight guy who just fell in love with one of the gay male characters in Dragon Age 2. That was the love interest for him, even though he had no interest in men in real life.  But, in the game, this freedom of choice allowed him to pick the person who fit his main character the most.

(3) Why Can’t We Have Separate But Equal?

This argument is: why can’t we just have games that only have straight people in them (and maybe exclude all people of color, too, while we’re at it …) and have separate games for gay people (and all the “others” that don’t belong)?

Headdesk.

There are actually tons of games that ARE just like that, where no gay characters and little diversity exists. Bioware is one of the only – if not THE ONLY – game studios that actually includes choosable deep romance with gay options.

Sure, there are yaoi dating sim games, but they are nowhere NEAR triple A video games like The Witcher or Skyrim, etc.

So really, those gamers who want “separate games” have plenty of choices. They don’t have to play Bioware’s games and could happily fill the rest of their lives with “non-gay” games. But those of us who look for such diversity in games have … much fewer choices.  Bioware is the only one listening to us.

We paid our money. We support the games. We get to tell the studios what we want and don’t want, just like everybody else.

What are your thoughts about romance and gay romances in major media like games, television and movies?  Do you think we have “enough”?  Do you think we should have “separate” media?  Tell us in the comments!

UPDATE: Bioware is in the next two months going to add a patch with MORE MALE ROMANCE OPTIONS!  YESSSSSS!

36 Responses to Gaming and Gay Romance

  1. BuddhaAli April 4, 2017 at 8:15 pm #

    I… didn’t even know that it was possible to have same-sex pairings in any of these games. where the heck have I been???????

    • Bakura April 4, 2017 at 8:39 pm #

      The funny thing is that in Mas Effect 1 and 2, there is romance for same sex but only for F/F. there is no M/M option till Mass Effect 3 and Andromeda.

      • Raythe April 4, 2017 at 8:47 pm #

        You are correct. It was DA which first offered this. And, to my complete DELIGHT, Bioware is going to off more romance options for the gay male Ryder. I’m freaking THRILLED!

        • Bakura April 4, 2017 at 9:10 pm #

          They are adding more!? There is a trophy that is just plain stupid. “Romance 3 characters across all playthroghs” There are only 2 M/M options and 8 M/F between Scott and Sara Ryder. There is even 4 for F/F but for M/M, we don’t even get enough for the trophy.

      • Bakura April 4, 2017 at 8:52 pm #

        Hit enter too soon. It sucks when you get to the third game in the trilogy just now be able to have an M/M romance. Where was it in the begining of the series? I’ll just skip the romance option in games without an M/M option now. It’s a roleplaying game. Let me roleplay a gay male.

        • Raythe April 4, 2017 at 9:01 pm #

          The one thing that Bioware has done so well (somewhat, its still so limited) is to have there be real romances with people and not like Skyrim’s grab a necklace and head to the chapel!

          • Bakura April 4, 2017 at 9:13 pm #

            Skyrim was funny and sad at they same time. You can marry anyone that you can ask, so just how many are saying yes because you’re the Dragonborn?

  2. AshesEmoFae April 4, 2017 at 8:19 pm #

    I was so excited from all the hints and implications that there would be some bisexual male alien shenanigans that we could get up to. I was so looking forward to it, since there have been a lot of female same-sex options in Bioware, even alien female same-sex encounters, but I definitely felt the male options were lackluster, especially since the character interactions are very limited. There are two ‘attempts’ at male same-sex relationships, but those are both quite weak, certainly in comparison to their female counterparts.

    While the assumption is that white straight men are the majority of gamers, those numbers are changing, and will continue to change. Unfortunately, even “progressive” gaming companies like Bioware seems to ignore this fact, or perhaps it is their EA overlords that are making this decision. If that is the case, then I am quite disappointed. Yes, I am glad that Bioware is doing even what little bits that they are doing. They handled this so much better in Dragon Age: Inquisition (so SO much better!), so I am quite confused as to why the drastic change in Andromeda.

    Yaoi dating sim/visual novel games are fun and all, but it would be more exciting to have a fully fleshed out video game that includes more realistic options when it comes to LGBT relationships.

    • Raythe April 4, 2017 at 8:49 pm #

      They actually heard us and ARE updating in about 2 months or so more gay male romance options. If we didn’t speak up and let them know (accepting what we were given) they wouldn’t have done this. Speaking up helps!

      • Ireyon April 5, 2017 at 12:25 am #

        Can I have some Source with that please?

        • admin April 5, 2017 at 9:38 pm #

          I don’t have the link for it. I’m seeing it on all my youtube game channels I follow. Just do a google and you’ll find it.

  3. Gatene April 4, 2017 at 9:10 pm #

    No, I do not believe that we as gaymers should have separate games; furthermore, I believe that any RPG with a romance option should give the gamer the choice of which gender to romance. I also believe that separating our games will just drive more of a wedge between gay and straight people as a whole. We should all be able to accept each other regardless of their sexual orientation and color of their skin. As long as there is any division, there won’t be full acceptance. There is still a LOT of division with race, so I don’t see sexual orientation acceptance happening much – or any – faster (but that is a whole other subject lol).

    Just, no, separating our games will just drive us further apart.

    • Raythe April 4, 2017 at 9:18 pm #

      Yeah, the separate but equal argument was just … headdesk. Really, its absurd at the best.

  4. Vidya April 4, 2017 at 9:57 pm #

    I’m a casual gamer, and I haven’t actually played Mass Effect yet (I know, I know, it’s on the list! In fact it just got bumped up since now I know it has cool romance options). That being said, on the general issue of lgbt+ romances in games, I think there should be romance options for any gender. Both for “realism” and for gameplay.

    I don’t see how making every character straight makes for a more realistic gaming experience. First of all, not everyone is straight. Second of all, the situations in most triple A titles are pretty extreme. If I’m in some kind of warzone or post-apocalyptic hellspace and my life is on the line constantly, I’m only looking for someone I can trust. After all, sexuality and romance are very different things.
    And even if that weren’t true, how realistic is it that you can definitely successfully romance most female characters who aren’t your enemy as long as you make the right choices in the game? I know plenty of people who are theoretically suitable for me by those standards who I would NEVER date. So yes, in pursuit of true realism you could have an increasingly complicated algorithm determining each character’s sexual and romantic orientation that correlates to real-world demographics… OR you could just make the characters romanceable by both genders because it’s less complicated, easier, and overall more fun for both developers and players.

    Speaking of players, I absolutely loathe when guys act like they own video games. They don’t, and they never have. Besides, how exactly would adding the option for gay romance change the experience of players who don’t want to choose that option?

    Now I feel like pulling up Sims and making a whole town of gay people who love video games, just out of spite…

  5. april rock April 4, 2017 at 10:10 pm #

    I love the choices bioware provides, I do wish there were more, or all! lol but outside of well made mods, this doesn’t seem to be prevalent. I mean a persons sexuality in RL doesn’t reflect on the gaming “fantasy” . So therefore all should be possible ? I’m not saying they all have to be sluts or unfaithful or promiscuous. but gees let us pick whomever our gaming character wants. Altho tbh for a switch I loved that Darrien was FOR only gay characters, after all the years of straight only choices it rather felt appro. But seriously Raythe is right ; I’m a HEAVY gamer and I want the choice of romance partner.

    • admin April 5, 2017 at 2:24 am #

      I just think this is a no-brainer now that Bioware has demonstrated that people are NUTS about romancing in videogames. I don’t understand why one can’t romance as widely as possible to have a lot of fun with it. Don’t get me started with being able to flirt with a bunch of female angara, but only Reyes and Gil for a gay male Ryder. Sigh!

  6. Amaterashu April 4, 2017 at 10:20 pm #

    I don’t pick my games based on how LGBT friendly they are but if there’s a possibility to make my character gay or the game otherwise presents me with a deep believable gay relationship, I’ll love the game forever. Bioware is still the only AAA company that offers romanceable gay/lesbian partners for the main character but lately there have been some indie studios who have done gay/lesbian relationships very well, like Finji’s Night in the Woods, so I have hope that someday gay romance will be normal(ish) in games.

    I agree with the whole bi argument. I don’t care if a character I’m trying to date is gay or bi, it’s not like they are sleeping with women while I romance them, Zevran excluded.

    As for other media outlets, I think side character LGBT characters are pretty common nowadays but having a gay main character is very rare. I can only think of three series that had a gay lead, Will & Grace, In the Flesh and Sense8. Of course I haven’t seen every TV show/movie ever made but atleast among the ones I’ve seen gay main characters are few and far between.

    • admin April 5, 2017 at 2:23 am #

      I don’t normally pick games on the LGBT basis either. We’d both have a paucity of games to choose from if that was truly the case. But Bioware really got onto something with letting us role play not just what we look like, what type of fighter we are, but where our characters’ heart lay. That was HUGE. It is still HUGE. And I just don’t understand why they fell down in this particular department (among others).

      I’m looking forward to seeing how they fix this. They clearly are listening, which is so important and belies all the arguments against people speaking up!

  7. Ireyon April 5, 2017 at 12:24 am #

    In defense of the first argument, DA2 had the “everyone is bi” approach and that was received with overwhelming negativity.

    Anders above all, which I kind of understood. Not that he was badly written, Anders and Fenris were my two favorite romances. I just dislike it if already established characters get changed in a sequel, since Anders was straight when he was introduced in Awakening.

    It’s also very telling that he doesn’t mention that Karl was his lover when you play as female Hawke. It’s *also* rather strange that he comes on to you mere minutes after said old lover was mercy killed. BY ANDERS HIMSELF!

    The character is nice, but I don’t understand why they couldn’t just stick Justice into a supposedly new person and simply change the name.

    Did I mention I might be a bit of a Bioware fan?

    Actually Andromeda got very little blowback for it’s inclusion of gay characters (it is part of Bioware’s image after all). The strange character animation received far more negative attention.

    The “be content with what you get” reaction is something I saw only once, and that had a underlying reason other than homophobia (it was about DA:I in that case) in that she felt the overt focus on sexuality leads people to feel that other important aspects of gameplay end up neglected and that Bioware might be more concerned about apndering than delivering a well rounded product.

    It worked out well for DA:I, Dorian for example is almost universally beloved, even on corners of the internet were you would least expect it. A paradox, considering that his story revolves strongly around his sexuality and family problems. Luckily this doesn’t define his entire character.

    I did mention I was a Bioware fan, right?

    Andromeda is a decent game until now. Not as great as I hoped, but better than I feared.Now I’ll stop before I start typing out an in-depth review.

    • Raythe April 5, 2017 at 2:18 am #

      DA2 – This might have been b/c Anders character was suddenly changed orientation or it seemed he did. But in all honesty, the negative reaction to that was based on the argument that not everyone is bi, which I addressed above. I think its bogus. These are pixels. They have no life beyond what we experience with them. I think it is more important to offer choice.

      Andromeda blowback – these attitudes I mentioned? They are all in the comments of the Kotaku article so this is alive and well. It’s something that’s still a problem. Plus, quite frankly Bioware screwed up, too. Why did we get no romance trophy if we played male Ryder as gay, but ALL other romances were included in that trophy? Why did we get 2 options for romance, but none are team mates and one **** spoiler *** betrays you? Bioware has recognized that it fucked up and is likely putting back in what it took out (Jaal as bi for example).

      Dorian to me was highly problematic in DAI. Unlike all the other straight options (Other than Solus) he wasn’t interested in staying with you long term … why? He didn’t want “domesticity”. Considering what gay people go through to get the right to marry … this just seemed an odd choice for Bioware to make. It was like: oh, gay men won’t commit! And the other choice of Bull as your “gay” lover was just … again, limiting you to one human male who won’t commit or a creature with horns. I have no problem with creatures with horns, but I should have other options.

      I know all about the character animations, but that’s not the focus here! We could go on about that for days!

      Anyways, I’m a big fan of Bioware, but they really have dropped the ball in terms of gay male relationships especially with MA.

  8. CarolineMcc April 5, 2017 at 4:37 am #

    Funny thing is I live 15 Miles from Bioware headquarters. I have loved their work from the beginning and I like the fact that they recruit from the Collages around here. So we do try to make Austin weird. I’m just glad that someone is making something with adversity, because we could be back to the way Trump wants things and have nothing.

  9. musicalife April 5, 2017 at 8:45 am #

    *placeholder for an actual reply because Persona 5 is currently a time sink*

    • admin April 5, 2017 at 7:24 pm #

      I’m finishing Mass Effect first and then Persona is going to rule my life outside work and site.

  10. meneathiel April 5, 2017 at 12:37 pm #

    I’ve not actually played so maybe I don’t understand how it works but isn’t it like watching a show/movie? I mean sure in NCIS Gibbs isn’t gay but in my fanfic world he and Tony get together easypeasy. Ditto Ironman and Cap, you decide to see what you want so if you don’t want your character gay don’t have him/her choose to romance a same sex character.

    I would chose the gay option but you don’t want to so don’t, romance Betty instead of Bob.

    Seems like it would be easy to code game wise unless people having babies all over the place is a vital part of the game play..

    • admin April 5, 2017 at 7:25 pm #

      It’s very cinematic. I would recommend (if you’re interested) looking for youtube materials on it to get an idea, its hard to explain.

  11. Luna April 5, 2017 at 8:41 pm #

    I wasinterested in seeing your thoughts on the game. ME:A is the first game I played in the series. So as a noob to the series, I’m generally happy to have the options to romance Jaal and get giggy with Liam and PeeBee on the side. I do become a little disheartened when I think about my second play through and switching to bro Rydet, knowing that I can not romance the same character, from my first play through, but I can romance the same race but as a side quest (talking about the Angara). There are enough side quests as it is (ADHD is not something to have while playing this game XD) and to throw in oh you can’t have a compelling story with the same character just because they are not into you, makes me a bit sad.
    BUT on the other side I do kinda like the element of exclusively. I some how ended up trying to romance one straight character and one gay character, and they let me down, gently and respectably, just like IRL! Which was awesome and funny to me. It kinda rings home (except for PeeBee that woman, if she not trying to get into my pants she’s trying ronget onto Jaals) that just because I’m so and so sexual that doesn’t mean I want to bone you, and I think that is a Real life issue that needs to be shown more and more to drive the point home. I kninda wish there was an ace chacrater so that no mean no could be in the game as well.
    With video games being a pop culture element it kinda has a responsibiliy/ability to send a message and I think Bioware is trying to do so responsibility *throws hands up stage exit*
    Luna out~

  12. River Iris April 6, 2017 at 2:33 am #

    My two cents; Relationships, romantic and otherwise, are much more complex than anyone writing a story can encompass. We play ‘role play’ games because we put our own view on them. Example being my City Elf from ‘Dragon Age: Origins’ only was hostile to humans who hurt others. He fell in love with Morrigan because she was a rebellious outcast like him. Almost nothing about this is in the game. His entire personality/motives were implanted by me. This goes for most RPG’s (for me at least). I’m going through my fourth-ish play through of the ‘Mass Effect Trilogy’ because I had to choose my gender preference. One of those games was straight (Asari being mono-gendered from my point-of-view, so one of those too). While I understand from a story viewpoint why, sort of, from the viewpoint of respecting of their audience’s time and who they want to spend that time being it makes no sense. Why not just make it an optional part of the game and leave it at that? The heart option is optional anyway. Unless there are tech/time constraints on their end? But if that were the case, why so may bugs at launch? This doesn’t make me mad, just confused and frustrated. Hopefully, this is just a small oversite and not a problem for the future. ={

  13. Evilcleo April 6, 2017 at 2:56 am #

    I think you’re being a little harsh on the company and needed to be more calm headed when you wrote this. I mean, your first and third arguments are contradicting each other. Based on the third argument, you do not want separate but equal and yet you seem to want every single character to be bisexual, which creates a separate but equal situation. In addition, Hollywood, media, all forms of artistic impression are on heavy pressure to create DIVERSITY! Not just in terms of race or gender but also sexual orientation. Why can’t some characters just be straight? Why can’t you compromise and allow some anti-LGBT gamers to get their way too? They are a business and also need to answer to their anti-LGBT gamers who also want to enjoy the game. This isn’t an otome game with a limited audience. It applies to everyone and you have to share.

    Besides, they really have a point where it isn’t realistic. I mean, sure you are a mature adult who knows it is fiction. However, if there are 12-13 year olds reading yaoi, there are sure to be young impressionable gamers who don’t quite realize what fiction is playing this game. And it’s not just about age. Many seniors who fall for scams are fairly gullible and sheltered young adults are equally naïve about the schemes people play.

    I enjoy this LGBT community but there is life and purpose outside of it and if we want to live in a world where they coexist, we have to willing to see their side too. Try and see the big picture.

    • kat April 6, 2017 at 6:27 pm #

      I don’t usually do replies, but I’m going to, here. Evilcleo, you seem confused by the post, so let me break this down for you – I know Raythe’s arguments are dense and lawer-ly… even after I edit them…

      The first argument is: “All characters being bisexual is unrealistic, because it’s unrealistic in real life.”

      The third argument is “why can’t we have separate LGBT games and leave ‘the gay’ out of all the others?”

      These aren’t actually the same argument against including maximum romance choice.

      The response to the first argument is this: MEA is a fantasy game. Nothing about it is realistic. You play a space-soldier set in the far future with awesome made-up technology. You can customize your appearance down to your hair length, race, and eye width. There are aliens who are mono-gender.

      Therefore, arguing about “realism” doesn’t hold water. Bioware is fully aware of that and fully responsive – you can see how quick they addressed it, which is to their credit. They know that their entire business is creating playable, immersive fantasies… complete with unrealistic tech, dragons, elves, magic, etc. They want you to become someone else when you’re playing, to live a second life that isn’t yours.

      “Everyone is bisexual in the game” is not the same as “separate but equal games.” In fact, it’s rather the opposite. “Everyone is bisexual in-game” provides maximum choice. It is inclusive because it gives people the chance to CHOOSE if they want to play gay, straight, alien-sexual, or aromantic. But “separate but equal’s” whole purpose is division, not inclusion. It takes one people and separates them into two peoples. Straight vs gay. Blacks vs whites. And so on.

      Even though it seems like you’re providing more choice (see? ‘they’ have their own games!), it is a move by the MAJORITY to control mass culture and confine the MINORITY to its own place. This is segregation, and what usually follows is discrimination, and lack of mobility across those lines.

      “This isn’t an otome game with a limited audience. It applies to everyone and you have to share.”

      -> A company doesn’t have to do anything they don’t want to. This isn’t public policy. You seem to be projecting your opinion about what should sell on a company with 20+ years of actual marketing and development experience. BIOWARE are the ones who decided to provide gay options. They seem to be doing all right in the financial department. And EA clearly thinks it’s worth selling as well. Clearly, there is a demand – and companies answer to the market. We should know 🙂

      -> Space games actually don’t apply to everyone. I know plenty of people who find sci-fi boring. I also know people who find elaborate story-based games too time consuming and/or boring. They play the thousands of other games out there that aren’t sci-fi epics. The gaming market is DIVERSE and provides choice… just like fiction.

      “In addition, Hollywood, media, all forms of artistic impression are on heavy pressure to create DIVERSITY!”

      -> I get this. You may feel that there’s this huge agenda to push LGBT content on the mass public. I’m sure that people felt that way when the female suffragettes in the US were trying to shove their right to vote down everyone’s throat, too. Perhaps you think that LGBT people are overrepresented, but it takes a lot of energy, visibility, inclusion in mainstream culture to make a social change (see: civil rights movement.)

      But the argument for providing romance choice in the game is NOT because “everyone is bisexual in real life, therefore it should be reflected in the game.” That is not what anyone is saying. Fans spoke up because Bioware promised a feature (romance choice) that they didn’t fully deliver. Regardless of how YOU feel about the product, this = customers’ right to complain.

      “Why can’t some characters just be straight? Why can’t you compromise and allow some anti-LGBT gamers to get their way too?”

      I don’t know if you actually play the ME games – it doesn’t seem like you do. You can certainly play the game as a straight character if you want to. You aren’t forced to romance anyone. So the straight people aren’t left out just because they see non-straight options. Just as the aromantic aren’t left out because you’re forced to romance people.

      “However, if there are 12-13 year olds reading yaoi, there are sure to be young impressionable gamers who don’t quite realize what fiction is playing this game.”

      -> I don’t really understand what you’re trying to say. First of all, no 10 year old can waltz into Gamestop and buy this. It’s rated Mature for a reason – all the soft-core porn! As for these impressionable gamers not being able to differentiate fantasy from reality, are you saying that they DON’T KNOW we all don’t live on a space station?? Or are you worried that they’ll think everyone is bisexual, and that will force them to become gay?? Please clarify, if you can.

      “Many seniors who fall for scams are fairly gullible and sheltered young adults are equally naïve about the schemes people play.”

      -> Still not understanding your point. Are you saying that old people shouldn’t buy these games, too? Please clarify, if you can.

      “Why can’t you compromise and allow some anti-LGBT gamers to get their way too?” & “I enjoy this LGBT community but there is life and purpose outside of it and if we want to live in a world where they coexist, we have to willing to see their side too. Try and see the big picture.”

      -> The “big picture” includes both sides, which is what MEA provides. “A world where they coexist,” as per your statement above. This means… coexisting, right? Both gay AND straight, or sexual AND asexual. MEA is, as you say, not an otome game which only provides gay options. If MEA only provided straight romance options, as *the majority of other games do*, wouldn’t this actually be the smaller picture? Like cutting out your gay uncle from a family photo?

      -> We’re not an LGBT community, btw. We are a group of readers who enjoy M/M romance, regardless of orientation in real life. Kind of like Bioware games 🙂

    • admin April 6, 2017 at 6:55 pm #

      Kat really said a lot of things better than I can. But I want to add one thing, not to pile on because we welcome opinions whether we agree with them or not, but because it seems to me that you “feel” something here but don’t know why you do.

      What I would offer is why you think we should include people who want to exclude others?

      No one in the game is forced to ever experience a gay romance. So they aren’t affected by this. It’s the people who want them that are adversely impacted far more. What is the cost when you include more people than exclude them when it doesn’t hurt you? That’s what you’re missing here.

  14. Pamela Cunningham April 6, 2017 at 2:34 pm #

    Personally I’m not looking for any sexual relationship when I buy game’s and I’ve been reading BL for over twenty years way before it started being all the rage . There are plenty of Western author’s who are either fantasy or science fiction writer’s that have whole series about gay characters . Plus kid’s can easily get their hands on game’s with a mature rating or over 18 I have a nephew that’s been playing mature content game’s for year’s and he just turned ten . The simple fact is there is very little demand for those types of games or their sim related and most of those come from Japan . Personally I’m not a fan of those types I get that you would like more BL game’s but you have to factor in the cost of making that type of game to the demand for them verses a game that studios know that the public is gonna buy .

    • admin April 6, 2017 at 6:52 pm #

      Look at Kat’s reply to Evilcleo as this addresses many of your points.

      But I would add that no one is forced to romance anyone in MEA. It’s a choice each player makes which means that if you don’t want sex in your games then you don’t have to experience it. If you just want a straight romance then you can experience just that. You aren’t made to experience anything in MEA.

      But when an option is offered (gay romance) then it can be judged by what is offered and compared to what is being offered to straight characters.

      In the end simply because you (meaning general you) don’t care about something doesn’t mean others don’t or shouldn’t.

      • kat April 6, 2017 at 7:30 pm #

        Haha – as you know, I’d blaze through the game without the patience to romance anyone. “GIVE ME ALL THE WEAPONS NO TIME FOR LOVE BYE!” Followed by an indiscriminate kill streak.

        I feel like a lot of commenters on this post actually have no clue what Mass Effect is. The above post seems to claim that the studio and distributor – Bioware, Microsoft, & EA – have no idea how much these games cost to develop, market, and publish. And that M/M is “niche” content.

        Yeah… Bioware, Microsoft, and EA are not in the dark. They’ve been doing this for more than 20 years. This is their livelihood. The last thing they do is gamble with millions of dollars; instead, they KNOW what people will buy: fun games based on fantasy and player choice.

        Based on the backlash, it would be a risk for them to do a game with no romance options at all, since romance choice is now a deep part their brand. People aren’t duped when they buy a ME or Dragon Age game – they know what they’re getting, and they get it, in part, because of the romance choices.

        “During March 2012, Mass Effect 3 sold over 3.5 million copies. According to EA’s Q4 results, Mass Effect 3 has grossed over $200 million.”

        Dragon Age: Inquisition: Dev cost And then, in 2015… “Dragon Age Inquisition is the most successful launch in BioWare history based on units sold.” (Both from Wikipedia.)

        Both games include gay romance options. 200 million in sales isn’t “niche.” Or if it is, what’s mainstream?!

        Perhaps I’m reading this wrong, but it seems that some think gay romance option = yaoi game? Or that if you have the possibility of a gay romance option, it’s 100% gay. Neither is the case.

        • admin April 6, 2017 at 9:28 pm #

          I think the m/m audience is so used to thinking of itself as not mainstream that it’s hard for people to realize that we are a far larger demographic than we all know and have disposable income to spend on entertainment that pleases us. Bioware figured out that people like gay romance and that it’s a selling point. Think of all the shows like supernatural et al that know slashable characters is a benefit.

          My point overall is that there a lot more of us that like this stuff than anyone thinks. So we think we are niche but then a mainstream company figures this out and makes money off of it and it confuses us because we are niche right?

          But even if we are niche we still have the right to criticize whatever crumbs are being offered to us. Bioware is the only company doing this for gay romance right now. The only one. There are a lot of games made and biowares success with this may inspire them in the future but right now bioware is it. To their credit they are listening.

          Sitting back and accepting less because we aren’t mainstream is ridiculous. Things become mainstream because people push them forward.

          Also this idea of making room for bigots at the table (and yes that’s what the people are who want games where everyone is straight) as if their hateful views should be given equal voice to those asking for inclusion is crap. No, I don’t and won’t give up on inclusion because someone wants only straight relationships in games because gays are icky or are “forcing” the gay agenda upon them. We aren’t doing that. Merely having the choice and equal representation isnt a hardship on anyone.

  15. Chelly April 8, 2017 at 4:51 pm #

    Sims 4, tho not really action based, is set up to allow LGBT. Set personality traits for either gender, and allows full crossover. Sims 3 allowed same sex relationships, but Sims 4 allows more control of how you set the characters up.

    Hmmmm, now that they added Vampires, maybe I can recreate Sanctuary in the game!

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