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Melbourne Queer Games Festival calls for LGBTI games and this is how you can help

Melbourne Queer Games Festival calls for LGBTI games and this is how you can help

Ellie in The Last of Us Part II

Melbourne Queer Games Festival (MQGF) is looking for LGBTI games from around the world to showcase at their event.

MQGF is a relaxed, lofi online festival taking place over 22 and 23 October in Melbourne. It’s part of the bigger Melbourne International Games Week and is run by a small team of volunteers who love queer games.

The mission is to inform, entertain and challenge local LGBTI players by bringing the best of world queer culture to Melbourne.

Melbourne Queer Games Festival focuses on LGBTI games

MQGF includes a live stream and a website, and a game bundle. Moreover, the will be an awards programme.

The focus is not ‘on queer gamers or queer developers’ but rather on queer games. You don’t have to be LGBTI to play, but you have to be an ally and passionate about equality, even in your gaming routine.

‘There are a lot of games with gay characters in it. A lot of people have probably heard of The Last of Us Part II which is coming out and it’s got a gay female lead,’ MQGF organizer Luke Miller told Joy FM.

‘Most queer gamers don’t play queer games, they play regular games and it’s quite right, they play Mario Kart or Call of Duty.’

But he explained this is a festival not exclusively ‘for queer people, but for people who are interested in queer games’.

According to Miller, the LGBTI segment of the vast gaming world is ‘tiny and underappreciated’. The event wants to showcase at least 20 queer games at the event, in the same way as the Melbourne Queer Film Festival would do with movies.

‘Gay games’ was a derogatory expression in the gaming scene

Miller has been doing a ‘Gayest Games Of The Year’ list over the last few years. His aim is to retrain Google.

‘If you googled “gay games” in the past, it would often correct to “worst games,”‘ he also told Joy FM, explaining the expression used to have a derogatory meaning in the gaming community.

He is hoping to change that with the list and the festival.

Miller also explained he is working on a queer game called The Beat, inspired by the Sydney gay scene of the 70s. Set in 2008, it starts with a murder in the gay community. The main character is the detective who enters the gay community and explores gay bars and clubs in order to solve the crime.

‘You start the game married [to a woman], you’re not gonna stay married for the whole game,’ Miller said.

The Beat is due to be released early next year.

Submissions for MQGF

Submissions for MGGF are open now until 15 September. Everybody can submit their games: from those who consider themselves professionals to those who are just starting out.

MQGF is also looking for video games streamers willing to play some of the games on their live stream. More info here.

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