Nintendo Updates Their Statement on Tomodachi Life

A red Nintendo 3DS with a  rainbow stylus assortment.

A red Nintendo 3DS with a rainbow stylus assortment.

Yesterday I lamented Nintendo’s original response to fan led requests for same sex relationships in the 3DS sim game Tomodachi Life. But later that same day Nintendo issued a second press release:

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.

I am disappointed that this was not included in the original game. I am angry and hurt by the words of that first press release.

But, I am hopeful for the future. This new statement shows that Nintendo realizes that lesbian, gay, and bisexual players ARE their fans and that their representation in games (or lack thereof) does matter. My hope is that this realization spreads within Nintendo and into the mindset of other companies. This is a matter that goes beyond Tomodachi Life and into all games.

Representation matters! It matters for sexuality, gender, race, class, disability. It matters for all people. We want to see ourselves reflected in our media. I am hopeful that the fallout from the original press release can act as one of a series of wake up calls to development teams.  The player base is and always has been diverse, so let’s work to create more diverse and inclusive games.

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3 Responses to Nintendo Updates Their Statement on Tomodachi Life

  1. J.E. Keep says:

    It was a nice apology and pledge, if a bit late and with the sad news it won’t be patched in.

    All the same, in the end the pledge to respect diversity going forward was a nice statement that did not equivocate. Which is important on its own I think.

  2. Christina Nordlander says:

    Definitely better.

  3. marco says:

    I think what bothers me most about the situation is that Nintendo, or NOA at least, has been making some interesting progress. I mean, past cases/handling on representation aside (especially that of gender and sexuality), they were being quite progressive with Animal Crossing (aside from lack of dark skin option) and Style Savvy sometimes makes me feel like they’re making an effort.

    But, I am a Nintendo fan and because I have in them for the future, I’m going to stick with them. I am hoping for better in the future~. I wish we could get them to fix Samus now. In Smash, and for her future games. vuv;

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