Remember the board game me and my friends created for our game design class? The one with the characters I made that I intended to be all queer?
We now want to turn said boardgame into a PC game (because the final goal of the class is creating a small PC game). And just for your information: I’m in a group with 3 friends, all male and straight. One of them has played all the Dragon Age games, the other one DA:O and DA2 (and now he’s playing Mass Effect :D), the third one none of these as far as I know, but he roughly knows what they are about.
Anyway, to take that step from a board game to a PC game we have to make some small adjustements about the concept, but we also want to add some new things. One of my friends suggested tht it would be cool if our four main characters each had a background story and that all those stories are somehow connected (and for example explain why they fight each other in the game or how they earn their money). As an example he said that the Hunter could return home to his house and wife at some point in the story.
I saw my chance and took it.
“Or his husband!” I added. He seemed a little confused at first, then he laughed and said: “Okay, or his husband, if you want to. But if we have a gay character we also need a lesbian character.”
A small success.
“Okay,” I said, “Let’s let the mage be a lesbian, the paladin asexual, the hunter gay and the warrior bisexual.”
He seemed shocked.
“No, we can’t make every character gay. We have to have some normal characters as well.”
When he said “normal” he just made me insist on it even more.
“Oh yes, we can,” I said, “And what do you mean with ‘normal’?”
“Why do you want every character to be gay?”, he then asked.
“I don’t want every character to be gay, I want a gay, a lesbian, a bi and an asexual character”, I explained, “Furthermore I want them to be this way, because it’s extremely rare to have non-hetero characters in a game.”
The friend who’s already played Inquisition interrupts us.
“But Dorian is gay,” he said.
And I feel how my time has come.
“Yes, he is,” I agreed, “But if you think about it, he’s the first and only gay romance option in the whole Dragon Age series. All the other guys before were hetero or bisexual.”
“But -” he starts, but then he thinks for a moment and I could see a hint of realization in his face.
“Hmm… yeah, I guess you’re right.”
SUCCESS!!! is all I can think.
“Okay, come on, but what about Mass Effect?” the first friend starts again, “They have some more gay characters.”
I shake my head.
“Same here. One exclusively gay romance option in the entire series so far.“
The third friend in the meantime tries his best not to listen to us because he doesn’t want to get spoiled about both games.
“Argh, okay. I can’t say anything against that argument then, I guess” the first friend admits, “Okay, then let’s make them gay, lesbian, bi and asexual.”
We also had a short discussion about what it means to be asexual, and I think I might even have convinced them to let one of the characters be a transwoman… But I’m already more than happy that they listened to my idea and that our game has characters of different races AND representig the lgbtqa community. And I promise, I will insist on this, in case my friends (or that professor) want to change something about the character’s sexual identities.
But overall I’d say: today was a successful day :D