Nintendo has refused to let players play as gay characters in upcoming simulator game, ‘Tomadachi Life’.
The Japanese game company, best known for Super Mario Brothers, has stood by their decision not to allow characters engage in romantic activities with the same-sex characters – despite mounting pressure on social media.
A Twitter campaign was launched last month demanding equality for the game’s characters – who can only flirt with, date and marry the opposite sex. Gamers used the hashtag #MiiEquality, in reference to Nintendo’s personalised Mii avatars, which quickly went viral.
Speaking to Associated Press, a representative from Nintendo said, “The relationship options in the game represent a playful alternate world rather than a real-life simulation. 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.”
Tye Marini, a gay gamer who launched the online campaign explained, “It’s more of an issue for this game because the characters are supposed to be a representation of your real life, 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.”
Tomadachi Life was released in Japan last year, and is set for release in Europe on June 6.
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