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Japan Nintendo Games Politics

Nintendo Apologizes For Not Allowing Same-Sex Relationships In Life Sim Game 384

Posted by Soulskill
from the standards-change dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Nintendo has been taking heat recently for their decision not to allow same sex relationships in Tomodachi Life, an upcoming life simulation game for the 3DS. An advocacy group for LGBT issues said, 'In purposefully limiting players' relationship options, Nintendo is not only sending a hurtful message to many of its fans and consumers by excluding them, but also setting itself way behind the times.' The group also pointed out that The Sims allowed such choices over a decade ago. Nintendo originally replied that the game was not intended to be social commentary, and pointed out that the U.S. release of Tomodachi Life is just a localization of the Japanese version (gay marriage is not legal in Japan). Now Nintendo has officially apologized for 'failing to include same-sex relationships' in the game, and they promised to build a more inclusive experience if they make a sequel."
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Nintendo Apologizes For Not Allowing Same-Sex Relationships In Life Sim Game

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  • Re:Overreacting (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Antique Geekmeister (740220) on Saturday May 10, 2014 @11:43AM (#46966899)

    For younger contributors, I do remember the first 'interracial', actually the first black/white, kiss on television. It was on Star Trek, and it caused some fascinating chats among my friends

                        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P... [wikipedia.org]

    It did cause a lot of controversy at the time. Among my very few contacts from so long ago, the universal agreement is that Nichelle Nichols was, and remains, a stunning woman woman whom any of us would be proud to have kissed at any point in her career.

  • by Vapula (14703) on Saturday May 10, 2014 @11:45AM (#46966915)

    LGBT is 1% of Nintendo Buyers.
    And most LGBT people won't care/complain...

    So, it'll be 1/10000, 1/20000 or even less (don't forget that Nintendo primary commercial targets are children and Japan where same sex union is illegal) who could decide to not buy the game... unlikely to have any impact to Nintendo profitability...

    And if Nintendo decides to implement it, it'll require lots of extra-development as they'll have to comply with local laws of some countries (including their own) where same sex union is forbidden. which means lots of extra costs...

    And maybe as many (or more) people *not* buying the game because same sex union is allowed in it and they are strongly opposed to it...

  • by captjc (453680) on Saturday May 10, 2014 @11:55AM (#46966991)

    Nintendo is going to be blasted either way. As a game that is rated for everyone, and as a company that is seen as a children's toy company, if they included it, the latest controversy will be that this toy company is trying to indoctrinate everyone's precious little snowflakes into the homosexual agenda. I'm sure that either Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck or and one of the Fox News cadre will call for a boycott of all Nintendo products and all the ignorant middle age assholes that actually give credence to what these people say will be going around with signs saying, "God hates Mario" or whatever. While Nintendo isn't as utterly screwed as the media like to portray it as, that kind of bad publicity would put them into a very bad place.

    However, the big problem was that same sex relationships were possible in the Japanese version of the game via what Nintendo calls a "bug." If it was never possible in the first place, it could have been defended as a simple design decision, but by having it possible and getting rid of it, the media is spinning it as some sort of social commentary by Nintendo. So, by fixing the bug, now they are getting the wrath of the LGBT community and are facing the kind of bad publicity that they really don't need right now.

    Basically, all this will do is ensure that these kind of social simulators will remain as Japan only.

  • Re:Negativity (Score:4, Interesting)

    by BrendaEM (871664) on Saturday May 10, 2014 @12:01PM (#46967035) Homepage

    More girls are raped than boys, so it would seem that more pedophiles are heterosexual.

  • Re:Jesus christ (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Vapula (14703) on Saturday May 10, 2014 @12:04PM (#46967053)

    They HAD to program that test, excluding same-sex marriages, because such marriages are illegal in Japan (and in many countries).

    Allowing it would have have to be on a country basis... and that'd have required much more work than a single test. Don't forget that english-localized games are send in many more countries than only USA.

    And I don't even talk about the nightmare if the two protagonist don't live in the same country and are playing through internet, one in a country where same-sex marriage is allowed and one where it's illegal.

    Nintendo choice was the one requiring the less work and presenting the less legal risk.

  • Re:Overreacting (Score:4, Interesting)

    by BrendaEM (871664) on Saturday May 10, 2014 @12:37PM (#46967281) Homepage

    I validate my pathetic existence by fighting ignorance.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 10, 2014 @04:01PM (#46968489)

    FYI, most transgender people consider "tranny" to be a slur.

    And I don't know many LGBT people who are thrilled with the idea of the "token" gay character either, because such a character is always played for laughs. I can't tell you who's being pandered to there, but it's sure not us. I value the few instances of deep characters who happen to be gay, just because sometimes people are gay.

Programmers do it bit by bit.

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