Ready, Player One?
From The Sims to Dragon Age: Inquisition, video games have come a long way in terms of LGBT representation—it almost feels weird when a game doesn’t have a queer character.
Still, it’s important to spotlight games that do diversity right. Here are ten recent games gaymers should definitely check out.
Overwatch has quite the diverse cast—including out lesbian Tracer, whose girlfriend was introduced in a tie-in comic book. Blizzard Entertainment promises she’s not the game’s only LGBT character, but so far we’re still waiting.
Fire Emblem Fates
This 2016 release was the first in the Fire Emblem series to offer a same-sex marriage option. Previously, players could only marry characters of the opposite sex (and have children) if they bonded closely through conversation. Fire Emblem Fates will feature an A+ ranking for characters of the same sex who form a strong bond forged in battle.
But players hoping to form a male-male union will have to purchase the “Conquest” edition of the game, while those who want a lesbian pairing will have to buy the “Birthright” edition.
Fullbright’s 2013 release, Gone Home, told the story of a teenage girl in rural Oregon learning about her sexuality and coming out to unaccepting parents. The company’s followup release, Tacoma, follows salvager Amy Ferrier as she tries to discover what has befallen the crew of an abandoned space station, several of whom are queer.
While Fallout 3 featured gay couples among non-playable characters, the fourth installment allows players to pursue a romance with companions, even if they’re of the same sex. (The game automatically makes your late spouse of the opposite sex, though.)
The Fallout series has a special place in the history of gay games: Back in 1998, it was the first major release to feature same-sex marriage, thanks to a farmer who forced users into a shotgun wedding after you spent a night with his daughter—or son.
Mortal Kombat X
Mortal Kombat games are legendary for gruesome finishing moves that allow you to burn opponents alive, disembowel them, or even rip out their spine. But in Mortal Kombat X we meet the franchise’s first gay “kombatant,” Kung Jin, a thief-turned-monk who is also a member of a Special Forces Unit and an expert archer.
Read Only Memories
Released for Playstation 4 in 2017, Read Only Memories was created by Matt Conn, who co-created GaymerX. It’s full of queer characters, and players can even pick which pronouns they want to be addressed by.
Life is Strange: Before the Storm
This episodic graphic adventure is a sequel to 2015’s Life is Strange , which introduced us to reunited childhood friend friends Max and Chloe. Max had the power to rewind time and, depending on player choices, the two girls could have a romantic relationship.
Out August 31, Before the Storm is set three years before the first game, and focuses on Chloe’s unlikely friendship with popular girl Rachel Amber. Details are still sparse but its likely it will contain LGBT content.
Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate
One of the game’s main protagonists, Jacob Frye, is a bad-ass bisexual assassin. There’s also a side character, Ned, who is a trans man.
Mass Effect: Andromeda
Andromeda includes two pansexual squad members, a lesbian doctor, and a gay engineer. It also offers two side character who are bisexual. A patch update in June allows main character Scott Ryder to pursue Jaal, a male squad mate and member of the Angara race.
Dream Daddy (2017)
Dream Daddy is only available for PCs and Macs, but this “interactive novel” is one of the hottest games on Steam this summer. And why not? You get to chose from among a bevy of foxy fathers—Teacher Dad, Goth Dad, Bad Dad—and users can customize their “Daddy,” selecting everything from body type to facial hair.