It’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans’ month this February in the UK, and here at The New Look MGL – where all gamers are welcome – we have hand picked 5 characters from gaming industry of this orientation that have been portrayed positively. All of these characters are very differently so that is why we chose them so if we missed any out that you believe have helped redefine gaming then please let us know in the comments below.
This list will contain spoilers for the games that the characters feature in. I personally believe that all of these characters have been portrayed very well and shown in a positive light by the developers of the titles.
There were a couple of characters that I was considering to include which missed the list, 47 and the heroes from Fear Effect were a few but here are the greatest LGBT characters in gaming industry as decided by the MGL Editors:
5) Mad Moxxi – Borderlands Series
Mad Moxxi really is one of a kind, she is the sexy NPC character who assists the vault hunters on their quests as well as providing entertainment to fellow residents of Pandora. Moxxi is unique to this list as she is the only character that does use her sexuality to her advantage. Moxxi is bisexual and has most characters both male and female desiring her throughout the series.
Although Mad Moxxi does use sex as a weapon and has a lot of innuendo in her dialogue she never actually does anything sexual and is without a doubt one of the strongest and most dangerous characters in the series. Being able to manipulate most into doing whatever it is she wants without ever actually doing anything sexual. Mad Moxxi may been seen by a few as a negative stereotype but I do not honestly see her that way. She is an extremely powerful character who very much has control over most of the residents of Pandora.
4) Sera – Dragon Age 3
As you all know we LOVE Sera, she even got a special article and Robyn Addison Was Last Month’s Voice Artist Spotlight. She is one of my own personal favourite characters of all time and is the first playable Lesbian character in a BioWare game. How BioWare handled the her sexuality however was indeed just brilliant, they literally made no big deal about it at all.
Sera’s sexuality never really comes to be part of the story unless you play as a female character (who isn’t an Elf). She does have some excellent conversations with the male characters of the party especially Blackwall and Iron Bull with the three of them comparing beautiful women throughout the game that they have encountered in towns and taverns. The way both BioWare and Sera’s voice artist Robyn Addison portrayed her sexuality was very much like Sera’s character – yeah she is a lesbian, no big deal, get over it.
3) Birdo – Super Mario Bros 2
Birdo has to be most gamers from the late 80’s – early 90’s first ever encounter with a Transgender character. Birdo is a boss that you encounter several times throughout the game and as most of you know is a pink dinosaur, with a bow that spits eggs at you. Most gamers believed Birdo to be female.
However in the English Instruction Manual its actually refers Birdo as a he. Now this may have just been a translation error but the original manual indeed does assert that Birdo is a boy, who believes that he is a girl, and would rather be referred to as “Birdetta”. Nintendo have since changed Birdo back to being female, but as most gamers who grew up with Super Mario Bros 2 I will always see Birdo as male.
2) Ellie – The Last of Us
Ellie is one of the best characters in gaming history, she is the perfect example of how to portray a female sidekick in gaming, always being in danger but never seen as weak. In the DLC chapter ‘Left Behind’ it is revealed that Ellie fell in love with another girl Riley. Ellie is very much a ‘Tom Boy’ character and is arguably one of the best characters ever.
The story tells the tale of two girls who were best friends and formed a very close relationship. They clearly had strong feelings for each other, when they were on screen they were always happy together and in the world they lived in being happy was rare. However I doubt most gamers saw the kiss coming until it happened, when Ellie essentially put her feelings on the table, asking Riley not to leave her before kissing her.
Naughty Dog handled the entire story very well and is actually one of the best love stories in gaming the way it is told. Unfortunately however the story had a tragic ending with both Ellie and Riley being bite as soon as they realised their own feelings towards each other. Ellie of course was immune but Riley spent her last moments with Ellie before she died. Throughout the main game Ellie suffered from Survivor guilt and in the ending scene admits that she does not know why she was chosen to survive and that the death of Riley still effects her greatly. The love story between these two characters is arguably one of the most ground breaking of all time.
1) Dorian Pavus – Dragon Age 3
We have decided to choose Dorian as his story in Dragon Age Inquisition (which you can see the review of here) was so perfectly told and he was not a clichéd stereotypical character, the way BioWare handled Dorian and his sexuality was very mature and did look at how it also effected his family life.
Dorian is a high born Tevinater Mage whose family disowned him and were against his orientation. Although later in the game his father does try to re-establish a connection with him, he still tries to force Dorian to change who he is and get him to settle down with a wife. Dorian stays true to himself as declines his fathers proposition as their is no changing Dorian from the way he is.
In the game you can try and have Dorian bond with his father and get him to accept him for what he is or shun his father and drop all ties all together. Dorian’s family problems were very realistic as this still does happen today; throughout many different cultures. BioWare really did well with this storyline as Dorian was generally a joker and happy character, but when the meeting with his father happens it shows another side to Dorian that was very human.
Remember, My Games Lounge is the Independant Gaming Site where all are welcome and if you want to get writing for us or just get more involved, leaving comments and starting discussions Join The Gamers here. We have more LGBT articles coming this month, next week looking at games that truly allow sexual expression.
But this is our top list of LGBT characters, if we missed someone out that was one of your favorite or most ground breaking then please let us know about it in the comments below. But no matter how many positive LGBT characters there are in gaming unfortunately some games still do include negative stereotypes. Lets hope for more characters such as Ellie and Dorian in the future as someones sexuality should not effect how much of a great character they are.