20 Dec 2012
and we still do not have SGRs, Bioware. What gives?
Same gender romances were promised to the playerbase before gamelaunch and a lot of people are still waiting for their implementation. Some more, and some less patient. And no, not all of them are lesbians. Or gays. Or Bisexuals. Or any other Other that still gets marginalized too much. A lot of people waiting for same gender romances are straight — like me.
Over the year we got fed a few scraps of information, but overall our interest was met with an almost deafening silence. There is one lonely thread on the Story and Lore forum that has gone through several reincarnations during the whole year and it took a ridiculous amount of work to get even a very sparse answer out of the community managers. Which basically boiled down to “We cannto tell you anything.” Any other thread was either deleted or got redirected to that lonely ghetto thread. Only recently another thread on the general forum was allowed to persist. Unsurprisingly the theory of a gag-order from some higher ups has cropped up. Some days I believe in it , too.
At the same time Bioware enjoys being lauded for their LGBT inclusiveness. And while this is justified for the Mass Effect and Dragon Age games, it unfortunately isn’t for SWTOR, even though the demand is very, very clearly there. The cognitive dissonance is quite jarring. I can only imagine how insulting this must feel for LGBT players.
Right about now a simple announcement that, yes, this content is still comming would appease a lot of the people who are losing their patience with Bioware. A new expansion has been announced recently. This would have been the perfect opportunity for such a statement. But we got nothing. Unsurprisingly this did not go down very well, and a letter writing campaign has been kicked off. GLAAD has been contacted and they will contact Bioware about this. TORWARS had a discussion about this in their latest podcast, blog articles (like this one) have been written. Other gaming-news sites have shown interest as well. If Bioware doesn’t act now, they have only themselves to blame if this boils over.
And to make this very, very clear: this is not a few entitled players whining on the forum. This is a sizable chunk of the playerbase being at their wit’s end. So we have turned to poking the zombie with a stick to get a reaction. Any reaction. Even if the answer is no, this content has been shelved. At least that would finally be an answer, and we could move on.
At the moment I am very reluctant to give Bioware my money. I will keep up my subscription, but won’t make any Cartel Shop purchases, or buy the expansion unless we get an answer. One way or the other.
Both by Natashina
I agree that games are not a platform for dealing with social issues. For a developer, they are not and really cannot be the primary consideration. But they are not something to be discarded as irrelevant. We have influence— on what is considered “normal” and “acceptable” as much as anything else. Even when we intentionally are not saying something, we are still saying something even by its omission— and that means we have a responsibility to think about what that is.
David Gaider: The Impact of Games, Bioware Edmonton
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