Video Games

Nintendo's Tomodachi Life Disallows Gay Relationships

Tomodachi Life Same Sex couple

Last year word got around that Nintendo's Japan-only quirky game Tomodachi Collection had a glitch in it that allowed male characters to engage in a same-sex relationship, including having children. This brought a lot of applause from equality-minded gamers until Nintendo released a patch that, instead of making the glitch a feature and including lesbian couples, removed the option altogether.

Nintendo has now announced that they'll be bringing the game's sequel Tomodachi Life stateside for Westerners to enjoy...but still with no gay relationship option. This would be less of a sticking point if it weren't for the fact that the Tomodachi series is, like The Sims, a life simulator that is meant to reflect the life and imagination of the player rather than adhering to the motives of existing characters within an established narrative.

Incidentally, the reason The Sims originally allowed same-sex couples is because it was actually more work to code the characters as gendered and set up rules that would check for and allow or disallow marriages based on gender pairings. Since Tomodachi Life is set up with those rules in its coding, someone on board is consciously and explicitly making the decision to remove same-sex couples from the game.

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  1. I'm anxious to see if controversy brews over this. I hope it does and I hope it brings about change.

    Posted by: Pablo | Apr 15, 2014 11:50:36 AM

  2. We need to Peter this crap. Nintendo can't afford a major controversy like this, so it will buckle.

    Posted by: Ryan | Apr 15, 2014 12:04:10 PM

  3. Protest, I meant. Dumb auto spell check.

    Posted by: Ryan | Apr 15, 2014 12:05:07 PM

  4. This is wrong. Here's what actually happened:

    Posted by: Brien | Apr 15, 2014 12:29:21 PM

  5. Brien, thanks for clarifying that.

    Nevertheless, we are still left with a homophobic company who should be shamed into fixing their anti-gay design bug.

    Posted by: Randy | Apr 15, 2014 1:15:21 PM

  6. There's far more money to be lost by Nintendo from homophobic parents than gaymers. Don't waste your effort, this will not change.

    Posted by: JMC | Apr 15, 2014 1:51:30 PM

  7. I contacted Nintendo, and posted on their Facebook page.

    "Nintendo excludes gay people from this game. Gay people exist. We are human beings who have loving relationships. We are not bad people who should hide in shame. The message Nintendo is putting out with this exclusion is that gay people's lives and loves are offensive, and unfit for the public. Violence and killing in video games is just fine, but loving gay relationships are bad? Nintendo, move into the 21 century."

    Posted by: man_rob | Apr 17, 2014 11:20:09 AM

  8. Here's an online petition.

    Posted by: man_rob | Apr 17, 2014 3:34:21 PM

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