Japanese game developer Atlus recently released the trailer for the upcoming game, Catherine: Full Body.
The game, a remake of the adventure puzzle-platformer Catherine, introduces a new character who many fans are claiming is transphobic.
The original game, according to The Daily Dot, ‘deals with Vincent Brooks, a 32-year-old bachelor who keeps pushing off marriage with his long-time girlfriend, Katherine McBride.’
‘After Vincent cheats on Katherine with a mysterious woman called Catherine, he begins having nightmares where he must climb enormous towers while being chased by monsters. The game does this by blending narrative-driven gameplay with puzzle-platforming levels, allowing for multiple endings through different romance options.’
Still, even upon the 2011 release of Catherine, many deemed the game to be transphobic. This is due to the fact the game uses Erica Anderson, a transgender waitress at the game’s Stray Sheep bar, as a punchline for numerous jokes about gender identity. In fact, Erica is also dead named in the game’s manual.
Because of this, Atlus has left many LGBTI gaming fans skeptical. And in the Catherine: Full Body trailer, a new romance route with a pink-haired woman named Rin is teased. For trans gamer Laura Kate Dale, this has the potential to be problematic.
‘We also get hints at Rin likely being a transgender character, as implied by the repeated use of a transgender symbol on the Full Body Teaser Website, as well as Vincent’s horror when face to face with her crotch. This is a trailer and not the final game, but considering the original Catherine’s poor track record with trans representation, using a pre-transition name for a character in their credits and manual and giving male-only nightmares to a trans woman character, I’m not holding my breath that this new romance will be handled tastefully. I’d love to be proven wrong, but their track record doesn’t fill me with hope,’ Dale writes for Kotaku.
If Catherine is getting a remake, can we please get Atlus to not dead-name their trans woman character in the credits this time? Better yet, maybe re-examine that whole “she gets nightmares because she’s really a man” plot line? Thanks Atlus, that’d be swell.
— Laura Kate Dale (@LaurakBuzz) December 19, 2017
So, there’s a trailer for the Catherine remake, and it looks like the third romance option is going to be a trans woman who Vincent will be horrified about having slept with. URGH, yep, of course this is happening. pic.twitter.com/PnRNC449jX
— Laura Kate Dale (@LaurakBuzz) December 22, 2017
Other LGBTI gaming fans share Dale’s concern.
“Atlus needs to stop it’s homophobia,” I say into the mic.
The Atlus team boos. I begin to walk off in shame, when a voice speaks and commands silence from the room.
“She’s right,” they say. I look for the owner of the voice. In the 4th row stands: the entire LGBT community.
— vorterinoo (@vorterino) December 22, 2017
“Maybe Atlus will tackle sexual identity good for once.”
— Mom (@truongasm) December 22, 2017
— j a c k s o n (@headfallsoff) December 24, 2017
It makes me . Sad because I like the themes of Catherine and the characters and I admit that I hate the writing around Erica but I do love her. And I genuinely like the game but now I don’t want to like it bc Atlus doesnt want to learn to Not Be Transphobic.
— guzma girl @ snz (@GHOSTFXCKER) December 22, 2017
considering how they turned erica into a transphobic joke in the original game i wouldn’t put it past atlus to pull this kind of shit again with rin
— bee 🌹 rest in peace 김종현 (@dvabug) December 24, 2017
Persona fans: Where is our gay representation! Protag could have been gay/bi/pan!!! Etc!!!
Atlus: continuously displays that they are transphobic and also other things like… hmm. sexualizing literal sexual abuse victims in their games and using harassment for entertainment
— ( ℂᴀɴᴅʏ ) ℂᴀɪɴ ⛄️❄️ (@Alexxxxeii) December 24, 2017
Ppl: that’s some transphobic shit in Catherine
Cis ppl: To be fair, you have to have a very high IQ to understand Catherine. The humor is extremely subtle, and without a solid grasp of animu most of the jokes will go over a typical viewer’s head. There’s also Atlus’ nihilistic ou
— ningyo || playing Persona 5 (@ningyoplug) December 22, 2017
it looks like vincent is gonna sleep with a trans minor in the catherine remake and also be the transphobic piece of shit he is okay im blowing up the atlus headquarters
— christmas gay (@sapphickanan) December 22, 2017
Also, let me fucking remind you that Vincent literally knows a trans woman that he sees every day.
Yet he has the “YUCK SHE HAS A DICK” reaction because Atlus / P-Studio are so fucking awful people they can’t even have character consistency if it means not being transphobic.
— Andrea律 | 👑 (@andrearitsu) December 22, 2017
BTW, I don’t care if you talk about how Vincent is supposed to be a piece of shit. Atlus repeatedly falls in line with their homophobic/transphobic characters as being the point of view. They also never learn to be better people in that area.
— Ashley, the Red-Nosed Reinqueer (@Yuri_Librarian) December 22, 2017
me: well I hope a remake will let Catherine remove the outdated transphobic humor
Atlus: actually we put more outdated transphobic humor and made it a focus point of the game
me: a l r i g h t
— °˖✧ OKAMI HD ✧˖° (@nihiIego) December 22, 2017
wow you’re telling me a remake of an atlus game not only looks like it’s still transphobic garbage but might actually be worse transphobic garbage than before? the new atlus game? the new game from atlus? who ever could’ve guessed, transphobia in the atlus game. what a surpise 🙄
— a very enby christmas (@cultofbabies) December 22, 2017
Catherine: Full Body is set for a winter 2018 release in Japan. The game’s Western launch has yet to be announced.