Lack of Gay Options "A Shame," Says BioWare Producer

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#1 Posted by Shielder7 (5152 posts) -

Lack of Gay Character Options in RPGs "A Shame," Says BioWare Producer

BioWare producer Cameron Lee announced at Gamescom not only that Dragon Age: Inquisition would feature same-sex romance options but that the resistance to including them in games is baffling to him.

BioWare's Cameron Lee, a producer currently working on Dragon Age: Inquisition, had some very specific words at Gamescom yesterday in support of same-sex romance in games. "It's an important topic," said Lee, as reported by VG247. Not only would same-sex romance be included in Inquisition, but resistance to its inclusion within the game industry is puzzling to him. Lee continued:

"It goes back to fantasy fulfilment. Your fantasies may be different to mine in terms of gender, sexuality, race, class, how you look, all these things. We're not going to force you to be a fixed character, that you have to be this male guy that runs through the world and looks a certain way, walks a certain way. We even give you choices of voices.

"So why picking a gender or sexuality is an issue is beyond me. We have the technology to do it, and we have for a long time, so why not let your fantasy be different?"

Inclusion is "at the core of RPGs, and I think it's a shame that more games don't allow you to have that freedom," he added. BioWare, previously infamous for the Mass Effect 3 ending controversy, has actually been generating quite a big of goodwill recently with Inquisition. Their prominent inclusion of the female version of the game's main character, the Inquisitor, in promotional material resulted in fans gifting the studio dozens of cupcakes.

For more on the latest Dragon Age game, check out the most recent trailer, which includes some surprise cameos from other characters in the series. The game, which was recently delayed, is scheduled to launch on Nov. 18 for PC, Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360 and PS3.

Source: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/136868-Lack-of-Gay-Characters-in-RPGS-A-Shame-Says-BioWare-Producer

#2 Posted by PapaTrop (1345 posts) -

"Lack of good options" - Me when looking at a list of Bioware games

They should stop trying to shoehorn in gay, lesbian, trans, proto, cis, and asexual relations into their games, and just worry about making good characters and good stories.............and good games as well.

#3 Posted by Bigboi500 (30082 posts) -

There's no need to push the gay agenda on mostly straight gamers. Their focus is all wrong.

#4 Posted by speedfreak48t5p (8201 posts) -

@papatrop said:

"Lack of good options" - Me when looking at a list of Bioware games

They should stop trying to shoehorn in gay, lesbian, trans, proto, cis, and asexual relations into their games, and just worry about making good characters and good stories.............and good games as well.

#5 Edited by Blabadon (26653 posts) -

Well how the fuck are you going to include them. Let's be honest, Bioware has some pretty bizarre choices in their writing (can't write in movies, so next best option...) and I don't see how them, or most other game writers can handle sexuality with the nuance, subtlety, and attention it deserves.

The resistance comes from the botched attempts and no guarantees we'll get something better next time. If the world's 99% calm with straight characters, it only makes sense that a genre where artists are so insistent on repetition of what worked before go with the status quo.

#6 Posted by jg4xchamp (48378 posts) -

If a game is pimping itself out on the players abilities to dictate the flow of the story and create a character to represent themselves, and the game wants to tackle sexual situations: then yes, in that context Bioware dude is right. It's kind of silly for a 21st century, in the year 2014 video game company to present that kind of fiction, and not have an option.

Now if Bioware is trying to sell their game on "we have gay sex in our game", well in that situation it's fucking shady. You aren't being progressive, standing up for a cause, or showing that you value equality, you're trivializing it. Congrats.

#7 Edited by jg4xchamp (48378 posts) -

@Bigboi500 said:

There's no need to push the gay agenda on mostly straight gamers. Their focus is all wrong.

You're an idiot if that's what you took from what he said. They aren't forcing the agenda on anyone, the point is they are having the option for those players that will play their game that are gay.

Shit was written in plain and simple English.

#8 Posted by Chutebox (37372 posts) -

then put it in your games and shut up about it already

#9 Edited by aroxx_ab (10093 posts) -

So tired of all this crap...

#10 Posted by lawlessx (46778 posts) -

@Bigboi500 said:

There's no need to push the gay agenda on mostly straight gamers. Their focus is all wrong.

push the gay agenda on straight gamers? well..that doesn't some the least bit homophobic

#11 Posted by foxhound_fox (88743 posts) -

How about less fanfic romance sub-plots and more quality main-plot writing?

Maybe write in characters that are homosexual or transgendered and give them meaningful development and backgrounds that don't make us see them as objects of digital pleasure (most of the female romance options in ME2 and 3 were highly underdeveloped in other regards outside of the romance sub-plots)?

#12 Posted by soulitane (13603 posts) -

If you're going to have romance options with your team then yes they should have the option for their to be gay relationships. The only problem I have with Bioware's recent take on it (ME3) is that you have sexual tension with each of your team whether you're wanting that or not. So I agree that the option is a great thing, they just need better writers.

#13 Posted by ninjapirate2000 (3058 posts) -

I would love to play as gay master chief, gay mario, or gay kratos.

#14 Posted by Shielder7 (5152 posts) -
@papatrop said:

"Lack of good options" - Me when looking at a list of Bioware games

They should stop trying to shoehorn in gay, lesbian, trans, proto, cis, and asexual relations into their games, and just worry about making good characters and good stories.............and good games as well.

I think those days are long behind "bi"oware unless the character has some sort of LGBT agenda they don't see to want to write about them.

#15 Posted by Bigboi500 (30082 posts) -

There's no denying Bioware is pushing their politics on gamers when it isn't needed. You don't see camera companies trying to sell to the Amish, you don't see rehab center adds in middle schools.

It's obvious because these gay scenes and options in Bioware games are there with no point or depth. They're there just for voyeurism and nothing more. They aren't helping gay rights or doing anything progressive for the small amounts of gay gamers who play them. The same can be said for their portrayals of straight romances too. They're only doing this crap for attention and nothing more.

So many mindless parrots today jump down people's throats just for voicing anything that isn't a commonly accepted scripted response that is politically correct. As long as that kind of idiotic reactionary response dominates the conversation, real dialog can't happen. All the insulting and generic "homophobe" dramatic responses are ignorant and shallow.

#17 Posted by kuu2 (7370 posts) -

My question would be why?

#18 Edited by Shielder7 (5152 posts) -
@jg4xchamp said:

@Bigboi500 said:

There's no need to push the gay agenda on mostly straight gamers. Their focus is all wrong.

You're an idiot if that's what you took from what he said. They aren't forcing the agenda on anyone, the point is they are having the option for those players that will play their game that are gay.

Shit was written in plain and simple English.

Constantly throwing it in peoples faces, obviously focusing in on it and lets face it down right barging about it while drawing attention to themselves about it is forcing the agenda.

#19 Edited by tonitorsi (8481 posts) -

Having options is always welcomed.

But I have to say I'm shocked to see the answers of some posters in this thread.

#20 Edited by bbkkristian (14957 posts) -

@Bigboi500: that's how I feel on the topic as well.

#21 Edited by RyviusARC (4615 posts) -

This is my problem with Bioware's implementation of homosexuality in games.

#22 Posted by Hearsay_ (16 posts) -

@Bigboi500: Straight games? Never in my life have I ever considered any single game a primarily "straight" game.

Cameron Lee is exactly right in regards to the choice of players with different fantasies. It doesn't really matter if the option to be a gay male or female is in the game, it matters if they are trying to force homosexuality down our throats but I doubt that will be the case. Having homosexuals in games is like having homosexuals in real life, especially when it comes to a fantasy game like Dragon Age where roleplaying comes into play a fairly decent amount. I'll be playing a straight male and will most likely try to sleep with the first female companion I come across, but if someone else wanted to be a homosexual and have sex with the first man/woman they comes across then that's fine. Who gives a fuck?

To put it simply, why does it actually affect you?
Why is having an option in the game that allows same-sex relationships affect you so much?
Are you homophobic?
Does it matter if there are gamers in the world with different wants and needs than you?

Gamers deserve choice, each and every gamer, each and every choice.

#23 Posted by chessmaster1989 (29392 posts) -

I think the problem with romance in Bioware games is that it largely lacks depth, not options. The romance in games like ME/Dragon Age aren't very important to the stories and have to be accomodated to the various possible romance options, so they can't be personalized all that well. The best romances (and more generally, character relationships, whether romantic, parent-child, friends, etc) in games come when they're written in without player choice. Final Fantasy X couldn't have been nearly as powerful of a story if you could choose to have Tidus romance Lulu or Rikku. The Last of Us wouldn't have had as great an ending if you could choose whether to sacrifice Ellie or not.

Let's face it, the best game stories come when they mostly take choice out of the player's hands. Story (and romance) choice is very overrated in games.

#24 Edited by Bigboi500 (30082 posts) -

@bbkkristian said:

@Bigboi500: that's how I feel on the topic as well.

The current PC atmosphere and "GOTCHA!" politics make it hard to have decent discussions about certain topics these days. Jackasses use any excuse to insult you, even on Gamespot which makes it easy to see who your enemies and friends are. Thanks.

#25 Edited by Lulu_Lulu (13681 posts) -

Well to be fair... Bioware's games have much bigger issues than Discrimination.

If you people are gona b!tch about something then I suggest you start with the gameplay...

#26 Posted by Hearsay_ (16 posts) -
@Lulu_Lulu said:

Well to be fair... Bioware's games have much bigger issues than Discrimination.

If you people are gona b!tch about something then I suggest you start with the gameplay...

#27 Edited by jg4xchamp (48378 posts) -

@hearsay_ said:

@Bigboi500: Straight games? Never in my life have I ever considered any single game a primarily "straight" game.

Cameron Lee is exactly right in regards to the choice of players with different fantasies. It doesn't really matter if the option to be a gay male or female is in the game, it matters if they are trying to force homosexuality down our throats but I doubt that will be the case. Having homosexuals in games is like having homosexuals in real life, especially when it comes to a fantasy game like Dragon Age where roleplaying comes into play a fairly decent amount. I'll be playing a straight male and will most likely try to sleep with the first female companion I come across, but if someone else wanted to be a homosexual and have sex with the first man/woman they comes across then that's fine. Who gives a fuck?

To put it simply, why does it actually affect you?

Why is having an option in the game that allows same-sex relationships affect you so much?

Are you homophobic?

Does it matter if there are gamers in the world with different wants and needs than you?

Gamers deserve choice, each and every gamer, each and every choice.

Wasting your time on uneducated ignorant people mate, better chance of winning the lottery.

#28 Posted by Heirren (17360 posts) -

Or how about go back to actual gameplay, leave a bit to the imagination, and let the player experience give character to the protagonist. Bungie did it with Halo and it turned out to be one of the biggest IPs in the industry. People call some of the more popular characters "flat", but in reality it is a design choice to let the player fill the role of x or y character.

#29 Posted by Shielder7 (5152 posts) -
@kuu2 said:

My question would be why?

good question

#30 Edited by Bigboi500 (30082 posts) -

@hearsay_ said:

@Bigboi500: Straight games? Never in my life have I ever considered any single game a primarily "straight" game.

Cameron Lee is exactly right in regards to the choice of players with different fantasies. It doesn't really matter if the option to be a gay male or female is in the game, it matters if they are trying to force homosexuality down our throats but I doubt that will be the case. Having homosexuals in games is like having homosexuals in real life, especially when it comes to a fantasy game like Dragon Age where roleplaying comes into play a fairly decent amount. I'll be playing a straight male and will most likely try to sleep with the first female companion I come across, but if someone else wanted to be a homosexual and have sex with the first man/woman they comes across then that's fine. Who gives a fuck?

To put it simply, why does it actually affect you?

Why is having an option in the game that allows same-sex relationships affect you so much?

Are you homophobic?

Does it matter if there are gamers in the world with different wants and needs than you?

Gamers deserve choice, each and every gamer, each and every choice.

^another prime example. I clearly said I don't want to see sappy love scenes in games when they're absolutely pointless, regardless if they're for gay people or straight people.

I wouldn't mind at all if there are homosexual characters in the games I play, or the books I read, or the films I watch, IF they have significance to the story and events.

People don't want others political views displayed in areas where they're not welcome. Do you want me to interrupt the song you're listening to and tell you about how kids are being killed in Mexico? Do you want the book you paid $35 for to be filled with religious advertisements even if the book isn't about religion? People don't like being solicited to about issues we have no interest in, especially when we have to pay for the media we're trying to enjoy.

#31 Edited by tonitorsi (8481 posts) -

@RyviusARC said:

This is my problem with Bioware's implementation of homosexuality in games.

Word.

Even sexing that doe didn't prevent him from blowing up the chantry and kickstarting the Mages/Templar war.

Bioware's implementation of any kind of relationship in DA2 is simply awful.

#32 Edited by SolidTy (43825 posts) -

I wish I was a bigger Bioware fan, but alas I have no plans to even buy this game. I never have fancied these guys, although I considered them decent once upon a time (before EA).

For me, it's all about passionate game designers. Create the best game you can create, worry about nailing the gameplay and I'm sold. All this other Political Correct stuff they can do whatever they want, but just make the game incredible and I'll play it. To me, this reads like PR and drumming up support for all the reasons I don't video-game. I don't game to support PC causes, but I understand others might.

Whatever floats people's boats. I just want a BadAss game.

#33 Edited by Vaasman (11499 posts) -

If they were talking about interesting options then okay, but all they do anymore is a 4-5 step "thanks for doing my quest let's bang" romance, and call that progressive and edgy. Gay or straight, shoehorned romance isn't going to convince anyone we should cater to all people. How about instead of constantly hyping gay romances, you make love subplots actually good Bioware, idgaf if they're gay as long as it isn't abrupt or awkward. Try for complexity like in BG2 days. Or maybe don't bother, and make the rest of the game even better. Then the sexuality won't matter at all, the truest form of equality.

#34 Posted by Bigboi500 (30082 posts) -

@tonitorsi said:

@RyviusARC said:

This is my problem with Bioware's implementation of homosexuality in games.

Word.

Even sexing that doe didn't prevent him from blowing up the chantry and kickstarting the Mages/Templar war.

Bioware implementation of any kind of relationship in DA2 is simply awful.

Yep. Another reason DA2 was so terrible. I didn't want a character in my party to turn on me, so I'm forced to deal with sexual advances from him? Yuck Bioware, very distasteful.

#35 Posted by silversix_ (14797 posts) -

This again... Do those devs think about anything else but how to include homosexuals in their games? Like seriously, they're the only ones going ham on the subject.

#36 Posted by Boddicker (2808 posts) -

@papatrop said:

"Lack of good options" - Me when looking at a list of Bioware games

They should stop trying to shoehorn in gay, lesbian, trans, proto, cis, and asexual relations into their games, and just worry about making good characters and good stories.............and good games as well.

DA:O was just serviceable, DA2 was a disaster, and I can't take seriously the ME trilogy because it contains the ultimate fan service race (Asari).

I don't have high hopes for DA3.

LBGT make up what 2-3% of the world community? By all means give them options, but don't cater to them excluding 95%+ of your fanbase.

With every interview I hate Bioware just a little bit more. People will buy DA3 simply because there's nothing else on current gen, but I believe the writing is on the wall for Bioware. My guess is they will probably be dissolved as a company by EA within 3-5 years.

#37 Posted by thebest31406 (3440 posts) -

I reckon some of the folks here are a bit insecure. You see the word "gay" and ya'll turn hostile. The point he was making was about choice; do what was intended in a RPG and be who and what you want. Some folks here are suggesting "yes, be who and what you want...except that...no, we can't have that." Those who maintain that position are either bigots or are so very close to being gay that it scares them.

#38 Posted by Silverbond (16069 posts) -

@Boddicker: So adding gay romances without taking anything away from the straight ones excludes straight gamers? Do you even think about what you're saying

#39 Posted by Boddicker (2808 posts) -

@Silverbond said:

@Boddicker: So adding gay romances without taking anything away from the straight ones excludes straight gamers? Do you even think about what you're saying

#40 Edited by Silverbond (16069 posts) -

@Boddicker said:

LBGT make up what 2-3% of the world community? By all means give them options, but don't cater to them excluding 95%+ of your fanbase.

This was you literally 2 seconds ago bruh

And rest assured this nonsense confused me too so I'm not surprised that when you are confronted with your own ideas your brain turns to mush

#41 Edited by Vaasman (11499 posts) -

@Silverbond said:

@Boddicker: So adding gay romances without taking anything away from the straight ones excludes straight gamers? Do you even think about what you're saying

Problem is that it inevitably will take away from a straight romance, just as much as the straight romance takes away from the gay one. More options means less allocated resources to each one, more time spent editing and focusing on multiple paths. The quality of each path is affected by the existence of the other. Attempting to squeeze in an extra subplot simply for the sake of options, is bad for the game in general.

Take DA Leliana and DA2 for example. In their effort to ignore the bounds of sex in decisions, they made romance plots simplistic and muddy. The lack of depth is boring and makes the whole thing feel annoying and unnecessary, regardless of orientation. Supposing they had infinite resources they could make everything equally complex, but they don't. One or the other or both paths will suffer.

Honestly, I think most people would be fine with a homosexual romance, if they actually put the effort into making it interesting and well written.

#42 Posted by Boddicker (2808 posts) -

@Silverbond said:

@Boddicker said:

LBGT make up what 2-3% of the world community? By all means give them options, but don't cater to them excluding 95%+ of your fanbase.

This was you literally 2 seconds ago bruh

And rest assured this nonsense confused me too so I'm not surprised that when you are confronted with your ideas your brain turns to mush

You're reading WAAAAAAAY too much into this.

I have more of a problem with the ham handed way Bioware handles gay relationships. Their constant moaning about it doesn't help things either.

I suggest you do some research into David Gaider and to a lesser extent Jennifer Hepler. David Gaider has been guilty of racism and sexism on the Bioware boards.

There's no need to get personal..........

#43 Edited by cainetao11 (17748 posts) -

@Shielder7 said:
@jg4xchamp said:

@Bigboi500 said:

There's no need to push the gay agenda on mostly straight gamers. Their focus is all wrong.

You're an idiot if that's what you took from what he said. They aren't forcing the agenda on anyone, the point is they are having the option for those players that will play their game that are gay.

Shit was written in plain and simple English.

Constantly throwing it in peoples faces, obviously focusing in on it and lets face it down right barging about it while drawing attention to themselves about it is forcing the agenda.

Can someone please define the gay agenda. I didn't find it to be "focused" on in Mass Effect 3/Fable games. Its an option that doesn't have to be used by anyone. And I don't know if this person from Bioware is gay, but just because he talked about it at a Game conference, where you know people talk about their games, isn't forcing anything on you. So are they supposed to have the option in the game, and never mention it to gaming media? Or just not have that role playing option at all? Which one will not be forcing this agenda on you?

#44 Posted by farrell2k (6367 posts) -

How about we leave romances out of gaming in the first place? It's worked well for the past 35 years.

#45 Edited by Boddicker (2808 posts) -

I copied this from another thread just for you, Silverbond. David Gaider is the lead writer for DA:I.

#46 Edited by Bigboi500 (30082 posts) -

.

#47 Posted by cainetao11 (17748 posts) -

@Boddicker said:

@papatrop said:

"Lack of good options" - Me when looking at a list of Bioware games

They should stop trying to shoehorn in gay, lesbian, trans, proto, cis, and asexual relations into their games, and just worry about making good characters and good stories.............and good games as well.

DA:O was just serviceable, DA2 was a disaster, and I can't take seriously the ME trilogy because it contains the ultimate fan service race (Asari).

I don't have high hopes for DA3.

LBGT make up what 2-3% of the world community? By all means give them options, but don't cater to them excluding 95%+ of your fanbase.

With every interview I hate Bioware just a little bit more. People will buy DA3 simply because there's nothing else on current gen, but I believe the writing is on the wall for Bioware. My guess is they will probably be dissolved as a company by EA within 3-5 years.

According to the most recent census and a compilation of statistics since the second world war its estimated gay/lesbian population is about 9-10%. What I don't understand is how were straight gamers "excluded"?

#48 Posted by lamprey263 (24223 posts) -

Lots of games don't have the relationship options in general, but in a game that gives you options for pursuing relationships then there should be options for gay relationships. Games that give you options to play as both male and female and customize appearance and such, relationship options aren't that big of a deal. I personally like the designing the hero approach for many games as it it can quell a lot of that "they don't have enough black/gay/female/etc characters in games".

#49 Edited by Hearsay_ (16 posts) -

@hearsay_ said:

@Bigboi500: Straight games? Never in my life have I ever considered any single game a primarily "straight" game.

Cameron Lee is exactly right in regards to the choice of players with different fantasies. It doesn't really matter if the option to be a gay male or female is in the game, it matters if they are trying to force homosexuality down our throats but I doubt that will be the case. Having homosexuals in games is like having homosexuals in real life, especially when it comes to a fantasy game like Dragon Age where roleplaying comes into play a fairly decent amount. I'll be playing a straight male and will most likely try to sleep with the first female companion I come across, but if someone else wanted to be a homosexual and have sex with the first man/woman they comes across then that's fine. Who gives a fuck?

To put it simply, why does it actually affect you?

Why is having an option in the game that allows same-sex relationships affect you so much?

Are you homophobic?

Does it matter if there are gamers in the world with different wants and needs than you?

Gamers deserve choice, each and every gamer, each and every choice.

^another prime example. I clearly said I don't want to see sappy love scenes in games when they're absolutely pointless, regardless if they're for gay people or straight people.

I wouldn't mind at all if there are homosexual characters in the games I play, or the books I read, or the films I watch, IF they have significance to the story and events.

People don't want others political views displayed in areas where they're not welcome. Do you want me to interrupt the song you're listening to and tell you about how kids are being killed in Mexico? Do you want the book you paid $35 for to be filled with religious advertisements even if the book isn't about religion? People don't like being solicited to about issues we have no interest in, especially when we have to pay for the media we're trying to enjoy.

@Bigboi500: I think you and I have been lost in translation, probably my fault. I agree with you, I do, I was amused by "straight games" is all. It was a strange thing to read first thing in the morning. Being forced is defiantly not okay, especially in games that are supposed to make you feel like what you are playing is borderline reality. However, I doubt it will be as bad as you think it will. If your gaming experience is being destroyed and raped because of a guy hitting on you, you might want to take a step back and have a look at yourself and life. No hate, just advice.

I tend to become very immersed in the games I play, and never once has something as little as sexuality in a video game made me feel any less immersed. I'll get a chop going if you relax a little.

#50 Posted by Bigboi500 (30082 posts) -

@hearsay_ said:

@Bigboi500: I think you and I have been lost in translation, probably my fault. I agree with you, I do, I was amused by "straight games" is all. It was a strange thing to read first thing in the morning. Being forced is defiantly not okay, especially in games that are supposed to make you feel like what you are playing is borderline reality. However, I doubt it will be as bad as you think it will. If your gaming experience is being destroyed and raped because of a guy hitting on you, you might want to take a step back and have a look at yourself and life. No hate, just advice.

I tend to become very immersed in the games I play, and never once has something as little as sexuality in a video game made me feel any less immersed. I'll get a chop going if you relax a little.

I said "straight gamers" not "straight games" if that makes a difference lol. I just think it doesn't belong if it has no significance.