Nintendo has responded to a social media campaign that criticised the company for not allowing same-sex marriage in Tomodachi Life. The Big N have defended its decision to only allow heterosexual relationships in-game, after it allegedly removed a known bug that enabled same-sex couples.
However, in a recent interview with IGN, Nintendo said the decision to fix the “bug” in Tomodachi Life was not intended to patch the exploit but to correct a data leak. Bill Trinen, product marketing manager, told IGN:
“There were two things that were going on at the time that essentially were grouped together as one. The first, that there was a patch. And what the patch was fixing was actually a data leak.”
In light of this, an online petition called Miiquality has been started, which calls upon Nintendo to go back on its decision to prevent homosexual relations in the life simulator. The petition was started by 23-year old Arizona resident, Tye Marini, who says that he wishes to be able to marry his real-life fiance’s avatar (known as Miis), but is unable to:
“My only options are to marry some female Mii, to change the gender of either my Mii or my fiancé’s Mii, or to completely avoid marriage altogether and miss out on the exclusive content that comes with it.”
Nintendo has reacted to the campaign by stating that Tamodachi Life was not a game intended for social commentary themes, and was always designed as a “playful alternate world, rather than a real-life simulation.”
Tomodachi Life allows 3DS Miis to behave and interact with other avatars, portraying personality traits selected by the player, and is being touted as the next Animal Crossing. It’s scheduled for release on June 6th, 2014.
UPDATE (12/05/14): Since reporting the story, Nintendo have publicly apologised to their fans for any offence they may have caused, but have stated they are unable to “change the game’s design.” The quote reads as follows:
We apologize for disappointing many people by failing to include same-sex relationships in Tomodachi Life. Unfortunately, it is not possible for us to change this game’s design, and such a significant development change can’t be accomplished with a post-ship patch. At Nintendo, dedication has always meant going beyond the games to promote a sense of community, and to share a spirit of fun and joy. We are committed to advancing our longtime company values of fun and entertainment for everyone. We pledge that if we create a next installment in the Tomodachi series, we will strive to design a game-play experience from the ground up that is more inclusive, and better represents all players.
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