The Problem With Subtle LGBTQ Characters in Games

Jasmine Henry writes: "The Last of Us' Ellie does share a kiss with her best friend in the game's standalone DLC expansion The Left Behind. However, we only know that Ellie identifies as a lesbian because of an interview that developer Naughty Dog did with an online publication - a publication that has since gone offline along with its archives."

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Featuring_Dante142d ago

Doesn't ellie kissing her best friend count as pedophilia by the developers? Who writes this stuff?

haydenlake142d ago

Their kiss is intimate not sexual.

Chaos_Order142d ago

Uhhhh, what? If kids kissing is automatically paedophilia, I guess the writers of Jumanji, The Tweenies, and a thousand other children's shows/movies are written by paedophiles. Or maybe... there's nothing wrong with it. At all.

If they start using tongues and putting hands down each other's pants then yeah, sure, that's weird.

Featuring_Dante140d ago

Yeah... they might be closeted pedos anyway, whoever writes this stuff should be on a watchlist. Why on earth would you imagine kids kissing? Its an indicator.

Chaos_Order140d ago


So I guess anyone who writes about murder is a closeted psychopath? Better rein in the developers behind 90% of video games on the market then, eh? Not to mention gamers themselves, who want to gun people down in GTA. IT'S AN INDICATOR.

Nicaragua141d ago

Pedophilia? I do not think it means what you think it means

Cartman55125141d ago

I kissed a girl when I was 12. She was also 12. Should we have waited till we were 18?

Goldenarmz141d ago

Its not really pedophilia, but in some states, it is illegal to kiss a minor. Yes, we know kids do this, but if someone wanted to make a stink of it. They could. But if in the games both are the same age, its not that big of a deal.

ecchiless141d ago

But is a game is not real, so how is a big deal? Or now pixels have rights and are legally alive?

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dp5212142d ago

Seriously, what does this writer want. Devrim Kay is in the middle of a war. Does the writer want him to go off and suck a D real quick to show he is gay. Does the writer go off and pat themselves on the back after writing this. None of the characters show their sexual orentation. In Destiny 2 your character doesn't talk and I have no idea what any characters sexual identity is nor do I care isn't that what everyone for equal writes wants.

haydenlake142d ago

Here's the problem... how does the race, gender or sexuality of characters help a typical game narrative?

Hint: It doesn't. Diversity becomes subjective. I'll use The Last of Us like the author did to give an example of why it doesn't help.

The Last of Us is set in a post-apocalyptic United States where many of the populous have been killed and/or turned into fungus heads. Survival is crucial, so what are the odds and/or benefits of Ellie being homosexual? Very unlikely and no benefits in the pursuit of increasing human numbers.

I won't get too much into the science of things but to my knowledge people being homosexual is a result of nature making sure species don't breed too much. I don't think nature would be concerned with curbing breeding in The Last of Us.

The problem i have is that these aspects of characters are being tacked on in games where they don't matter for the sake of pandering. We don't need to know Tracer is gay, or Winston is asexual or something because they belong to a game about shooting each other and guarding a car, and in formats where it does matter, why can't it be up to each individual whether they're favourite character is gay, straight or transdimensional?

Unless you can correlate LGBTQABCDEFG+- stuff with games where it is relevant and/or it will fit the universe/narrative it needs to stop being forced on gamers and developers. The best solution for having more diversity in games is for it's supporters to make their own games with it in mind.

SlashHabit142d ago (Edited 142d ago )

Hey yeah you're right. Ellie is basically humanity's last hope as her children would probably be immune too.

Her lebanesiamism is incredibly inconvenient.

UltraNova142d ago

Terribly inconvenient for humanity in the game but quite convinient for the devs in real life since are obviously boarding this gender equality train hoping to draw some attention to them. Do they really need more attention? the question.

nitus10141d ago (Edited 141d ago )

The game has fantasy elements so you could assume Ellie is parthenogenic who can give birth to children without male assistance. Well, she does have an immunity to the fungus disease so why not?

Note: Parthenogenesis is a natural form of asexual reproduction in which growth and development of embryos occur without fertilization and certain creatures such as some lizards (whiptail species and the Komodo dragon), some insects, some sharks, etc.

BTW. Notice I did say "natural" so like it or not nature does give rise to creatures that have this capability although to date this has never been seen in humans or primates.

Yes, I am aware that some people with strong (normally religious) beliefs will say that this cannot be but there are living creatures which are easily demonstrated parthenogenic so it's really impossible to deny the evidence.

UltraNova141d ago (Edited 141d ago )


Although I appreciate the time and effort to look up and break down the concept of parthenogenesis, I have to ask you, are you drunk?

Seriously, why would they go to such lengths to justify the blatantly obvious truth? Truth being that they wanted to ride the latest popular train which is gender equality, girl power/feminism etc! I mean what was wrong with more Joel and Ellie time?

nitus10141d ago (Edited 141d ago )


No, I can assure you I am quite sober although I am getting tired.

I was replying to SlashHabit's comment stating that lebanesiamism in the game is incredibly inconvenient (for who?) and I pointed out that it can be explained in a way that makes sense although not in the same sense as some people would like.

BTW. The fungal disease mentioned in the game does exist for some insects and grubs. It would be quite horrific if something like that attacked humans.

I do agree that the developers could be on the latest "popular"?? train of gender equality (no issue with this), girl power/feminism (that can be nasty SJW territory) etc. 😎

SinkingSage141d ago

That's a little bit too much of a fantasy, mammal parthenogenesis in a game where almost everything is hyper realistic (except for the game mechanics, like being shot in the face and surviving), that's way too far fetched.

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mixelon142d ago

“things but to my knowledge people being homosexual is a result of nature making sure species don't breed too much. I don't think nature would be concerned with curbing breeding in The Last of Us. ”
Pretty weird to assign mature consciousness like that. Nature doesn’t work like that. Gayness exists regardless of population level. It’s crazy to think there’d be less gay people in a broken down society, if anything there’d likely be more bi and gay activity, like you see in prisons.

haydenlake142d ago

Not a consciousness in nature but a consciousness between members of a species? Something instinctual i guess.

Homosexual activity in prisons probably has more to do with prison culture than the availability of homosexuals in prisons. Homosexual activity would continue, sure, but very unlikely among communities not akin to members of prisons. Ellie i don't believe was raised in a world or culture where homosexuality is necessitated.

TricksterArrow142d ago (Edited 142d ago )

"to my knowledge people being homosexual is a result of nature making sure species don't breed too much."

This is untrue. Some actually say that homosexuality evolved so to [homosexual] males protect the females and children while the other more dominant males went on to hunt and scavenge, as they were prone to be gatherers (this rings particularly true in nature, specially penguins, as homosexual animals tend to care for children without parents; and also in some indigenous societies, where the homosexuals become village leaders caring for the village and it's people, read: women and children). Another theory is that, while homosexuals show a preference to the same sex, they are not sterile, so they would be actually a "safe measure" to breeding if all the males died while hunting and scavenging.

These are, at least according to Dawkins.

Nature is not sentient, it cannot perform birth control voluntarily. Which is a pity. The human race could use more of that.

haydenlake142d ago

Well those reasons definitely sound a lot more interesting, but i can only see that the current demographic for human sexuality show homosexual numbers are too few for the concept of protection to work efficiently.

TricksterArrow141d ago (Edited 141d ago )

I think the concept of protection in this case would be more on the lines of a male presence being more imposing to another invading male, rather than actually forming an army to prevent invasions and raids in the tribe. An army of gay individuals that are gatherers would actually, maybe, be counter productive, as the hunters and scavengers would have to feed the army as well as the women and children.

The flaw with this theory is that female homosexuality exists as well and would therefore be unexplained.

nitus10141d ago


Read my earlier post on Parthenogenesis which is a natural form of asexual reproduction in which growth and development of embryos occur without fertilization which does exist in some species living today although to date, not in humans and other primates.

So yes female homosexuality in some species (eg. whiptail lizard to name one) can result in offspring.

deafdani141d ago

If Ellie's friend in Left Behind happened to be a male kid, but everything else stayed the same, I think nobody would've said anything about the scene of the two kids kissing, despite the fact that it doesn't have any real effect into the narrative, besides making us identify with them in an emotional level.

But change the boy to a girl, and I see people like you criticizing it, or even making ridiculous claims about the role of homosexuality in nature, despite the fact that the ultimate intention in the scene hasn't changed: it still wants us to feel empathy towards two characters sharing an intimate moment. It just happens that those characters are of the same gender.

Don't overthink it.

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VerminSC142d ago

I believe only about 3% of people identify as gay, so having gay characters so prevelant in games feels forced, and unnatural. That’s my issue with it anyways.

TricksterArrow142d ago (Edited 142d ago )

But a fungal infection that takes over the human brain and transforms them into zombies is believable and natural? I think people have issues with gay characters in general because they can't or are unwillingly to relate to them, just like some males have issues playing a game where a female is the protagonist (I've read this somewhere around here, swear to God), everything else seems to be excuses, to be completely honest.

I find it pretty easy to relate to any character as long as the story is well told and the character is sympathetic. I'd take over a hundred lesbian Ellies over Dontes from DmC any day. I can't find it difficult at all to relate to her struggles and even her love for Riley, just push gender aside and relate to the human aspect. It's not that hard.

Highlife141d ago

You can be gay all you want I don't want anything to do with it. This whole gay trans train is stupid. It's confusing kids. My cousin was caught up in it thought it was cool and found other people online telling her she should be a boy so she tried it. Later she regretted the whole thing. This whole trans gay thing is trying to be trendy.

TricksterArrow141d ago (Edited 141d ago )

You don't have to "do anything with it". Gay people exist since the dawn of time, heck, some societies were build around gay being norm, such as Rome and Greece. I mean, I were a kid once, I was never "confused" that I liked girls even though I was aware that gays exist and even had one gay uncle perfectly integrated in my family and happily married. You were a kid once, so tell me, were you confused? If you were, maybe you should explore that side of you rather than push it aside, we will all rot under the earth anyway.

Kudos for your cousin for actually having something to regret DOING, some people regret not doing it all. That's not particularly a sob or sad story of prejudice and oppression, she had her choice. Not sure why you told it.

Also, there is no train that I'm aware? Well, at least I'm not on board with it. Sorry if you are? Or feeling compelled to join? Like I said, you should look into that, mate.

Highlife141d ago (Edited 141d ago )

If you think there is no lgbtq agenda your stupid. Duh gay people have been around I don't have a problem with anyone who is gay that's fine your an adult do what you want but you can't say there hasn't been a push a trendy thing to it and it should not be pushed. How many genders are there? If your answer is not 2 them there is a problem.

TricksterArrow141d ago

What would you consider pushy? Because I'm not being pushed into becoming gay anytime soon. And what agenda is that that I'm not aware? World domination? Aren't you a little paranoid?

Qdog141d ago (Edited 141d ago )

More ShareBlue, purple revolution shill fodder. You have your view and Ill have mine. My view is, through decades of experience and heavy research, superior to your own in my mind, as I'm sure you'll say somewhat the same of your views. I am I open minded, but not to the proverbial point that my brain falls out.

There is an agenda to the studied, the versed, and the academically ambitious. When multiple industries as a whole (who make money by appealing to the masses, both niche and otherwise) choose to use so much money and effort to expose and normalise exposure to such a small percentage of the known population, while potentially alienating a very large percent of their money making demographic, I say yes, there is an agenda.

How many large corporations need to fall on their own sword over social and political statements and agendas, before they understand that they are only appealing to a very small sub-minority of the human population, while giving the finger to their true money makers?

Even worse, someone has to be paying for it, as ad revenue from a smaller percentage of what is already a single digit percentage of the population, cannot be making up the difference.

Be gay on your time, stop wasting mine and my children's time trying to get us to accept or condone your behaviors.

I care not of an individual's sexuality, it has no effect on my life. To each their own.

TricksterArrow141d ago

It baffles me to see people so defensive and aggressive and writing big walls of text on "something that does not affect me or my life" and "wastes my time". *shrug* I guess it somehow affects you and requires your time.

Plus, once again, I was a child once, and I'm pretty sure you too: I was exposed to gays and their existence, it never made me question my sexuality, not even once. Just as well, I used to play GTA and Resident Evil by age 6, I never went on a killing spree, never dissociated from reality like FX news would claim a few years later, and I also saw my first pornographic magazines by age 5, I also never had sex before I was 17, nor ever condoned or practiced promiscuity. And by the way, my favorite movie used to be Scream, by Wes Craven (aged 8). I'm done with this subject, the mob mentality already took place and there is no arguing with that.

By all means, protect your children and don't waste your time on something that doesn't affect you, because I'm done.

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 141d ago
Qdog141d ago (Edited 141d ago )

I agree...