Nintendo attempts to explain why it will not allow gay characters

Game company is being accused of homophobia after it was revealed a new life simulation game would not include same-sex relationships or gay marriage

Nintendo attempts to explain why it will not allow gay characters
08 May 2014

Nintendo has said it will not allow gay characters in new life-simulation game Tomodachi Life.

A gay fan launched a social media campaign urging the game company to allow same-sex relationships, so it is true to real life.

But in an attempt to explain why, Nintendo said ‘it never intended to make any form of social commentary’.

Tye Marini, a 23-year-old gamer from Arizona, launched a campaign urging Nintendo to allow gay couples in the game.

He said as his virtual avatar, the ‘Mii’, would be unable to marry in the game he would miss out on content only for straight couples.

‘I want to be able to marry my real-life fiance’s Mii, but I can’t do that,’ Marini told AP.

‘My only options are to marry some female Mii, to change the gender of either my Mii or my fiance’s Mii or to completely avoid marriage altogether and miss out on the exclusive content that comes with it.’

He added: ‘You import your personalised characters into the game. You name them. You give them a personality. You give them a voice. They just can’t fall in love if they’re gay.’

Tomodachi Life is similar to many other Nintendo games, such as Wii Sports, that allows you to create a version of yourself in the gaming world and play.

It has been a huge hit in Japan, and the firm is set to launch the game in the US and Europe in June

‘The relationship options in the game represent a playful alternate world rather than a real-life simulation,’ Nintendo said in a statement.

‘We hope that all of our fans will see that Tomodachi Life was intended to be a whimsical and quirky game, and that we were absolutely not trying to provide social commentary.’

They added: ‘The ability for same-sex relationships to occur in the game was not part of the original game that launched in Japan.

‘That game is made up of the same code that was used to localize it for other regions outside of Japan.’

This is actually inaccurate. When the game was released last year in Japan, same-sex relationships were allowed. By mistake.

It then emerged a subsequent patch from Nintendo would not only fix a bug causing problems with saving the game, but also remove the ‘glitch’ allowing gay marriage.

Nintendo said it has ‘thoughtfully considered’ the response and ‘will continue to listen and think about the feedback’.

‘We’re using this as an opportunity to better understand our consumers and their expectations of us.’



No thumbnail available

LGBT visibility causing Indians to question straight friends’ relationships

India has always had a culture where heterosexuals have been very physical with their friends of the same-sex, but LGBT visibility is increasingly causing this affection to be questioned
No thumbnail available

Frank Ocean: ‘Channel Orange might be my last album’

Grammy nominated gay singer says he is considering quitting the music industry and writing a novel next year
No thumbnail available

Gay soldier to receive historic London honor

James Wharton, a friend of Prince Harry, will receive the Freedom of the City of London accolade for his work to end homophobic bullying in schools
No thumbnail available

Amber Heard criticises closet actors

Out Hollywood bisexual Heard says closet actors don’t respect themselves
No thumbnail available

Gay teasing made ‘UK Columbine’ teen want to attack mosque

The 17-year-old plotted with two friends, and had petrol bombs, pipe bombs and an offensive weapon
No thumbnail available

Yunel Escobar suspended for three games for having anti-gay slur painted on face

He says: 'I agree with the suspension. I don't have any problem with that'
No thumbnail available

Pakistani TV news hands over ‘gay couple’ to police, calls for stoning

Pakistani TV report shows journalist entering a home, insulting the two residents and apparently handing them to police while calling for tougher laws and stoning of LGBTIs
No thumbnail available

Madonna faces fine for flouting St Petersburg 'gay gag' law

The queen of pop tells fans at Russian concert to 'show your love' for gays and 'fight for freedom'
No thumbnail available

Jess Glynne joins Brighton Pride line-up

Real Love singer and Fatboy Slim slated for LGBTI festival
No thumbnail available

London fights to be world's most popular gay hotspot

New York City remains the number one destination for LGBT tourists, but London and the UK have grown in popularity