Wow. Just wow.

If someone had told 13-year old Aimee that she would be seeing someone just like herself in video games soon, she probably wouldn’t have believed you. But no, yesterday blew that line of thinking completely out of the window and I can’t feel any happier than I do right now.

For those who miraculously didn’t manage to see the new The Last of Us 2 trailer, I’ll state the facts: Ellie, the pseudo-daughter figure that you looked after in the first game, kissed a woman named Dina. When I put it like that, in such a simple sentence, it doesn’t seem like such a big thing at all, does it?

But that isn’t entirely true. While queer representation has gotten a lot better thanks to games such as Dragon Age, Mass Effect, Life is Strange, Technomancer and of course, The Last of Us: Left Behind, we still have a long way to go. However, what some may not realize is that the inclusion of The Last of Us 2 kiss has opened up a whole new set of expectations for queer representation in video games.

As much as I love the games I’ve mentioned above, I personally can’t name a single company that has included a lesbian kiss for their protagonist in a video game trailer – not even DontNod or BioWare. No matter how inclusive studios may be, people have always tried to hide queer people in the background, always slapping the word ‘option’ on their queer content to try and help ease any uncomfortable homophobes out there. It’s a clever move, even if people disregard it and go bananas at LGBT content being included in the first place, but it’s also a damning one.

The Last of Us 2 Queer Representation 1

Ellie’s kiss with Dina sticks a big, old middle finger up to that kind of marketing. And while I don’t know the specifics of that relationship just yet, aka it’s a possibility that ‘Bury Your Gays’ may happen (if it does then be aware I’ll have something to say about that too,) it’s undeniable that this move by Naughty Dog will be the new standard for queer gamers everywhere.

And while this doesn’t mean queer gamers want to grab 100% of gaming content, it does mean something as simple as this: if Naughty Dog can include us in a trailer during the biggest gaming event of the year, then what is stopping queer protagonists and characters being shown off becoming a standard thing to include in promotional material?

The answer is nothing.

Naughty Dog has upped the game by including this lesbian kiss, but will others follow? I hope so, because it’s what LGBT gamers deserve.

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4 Comments »

  1. Just… stop… Seriously, I am a bisexual male myself and I would much rather see this stop. I didn’t ask to be represented, I am okay with gaming as it is. Big dudes with big guns, gals with huge racks, whatever. It’s video games, the only thing they are supposed to be is fun to play, literally nothing else.

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  2. I remember when Naughty Dog was all about hiding naked pics of women in their games, now they are all LGBTQ promoters, what a P.C. ass kisser Naughty Dog has become… shame… Maybe they should rename themselves Phony Kitty. lol

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  3. “Naughty Dog has upped the game by including this lesbian kiss, but will others follow? I hope so, because it’s what LGBT gamers deserve.”
    And this line alone is why I hope not. I am fine with gay characters as long as they are good characters. They don’t have to be gay just to be good. If you are gonna turn characters gay just to represent the gay crowd so you can please the gay crowd, many gamers will pick up on that and it WILL make it more difficult to enjoy the characters.
    This is the same argument as that there should be more female heroes. If the hero’s main push factor is that they are female, that isn’t interesting either. On one hand I get it, on the other hand, I’d rather the developers actually do what they wanna do, not what they feel like they have to do. It just ends up a better result.
    I mean, just look at God of War 4. All straight, mostly male, no black people. Because it makes sense in the setting and no one is bashing the game any points for not having any character that has any of the previously mentioned descriptions.

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