Monday, January 30, 2012

Pro-Family Group Outraged by Addition of Homosexuality to Star Wars Game

The pro-family group Family Research Council (FRC) is in an uproar over the addition of gay relationships to the massive multi-player game Star Wars: The Old Republic.

FRC is a nonprofit organization based in Washington D.C. that claims that it is "the leading voice for the family in our nation's halls of power." Recently, the group released a statement concerning their concern about Bioware’s addition of homosexuality into its Star Wars game.

Although the addition has not yet been made to the game, Bioware has announced that the ability to have a homosexual relationship with NPC characters in the game, not relationships with other game users, will be coming soon.

"In a galaxy not so far far away, Star Wars gamers have already gone to the dark side. The new video game, Star Wars: The Old Republic, has added a special feature: gay relationships," says Tony Perkins, FRC president, in a statement.

"Since the announcement, homosexuals have been celebrating the news, but parents sure aren't. On the game's website, there are more than 300 pages of comments - a lot of them expressing anger that their kids will be exposed to this Star Warped way of thinking. You can join them by logging on and speaking up. It's time to show companies who the Force is really with," adds Perkins.

There were some issues surrounding homosexuality in The Old Republic that came up in 2009. Users that posted on Bioware’s online forum noticed that words such as “gay,” “lesbian” and “homosexual” were censored any time that they were posted on the forum. When questioned about the censorship, Sean Dahlberg, the Bioware community manager, stated in an April 2009 post, "[Gay and lesbian] are terms that do not exist in Star Wars. Thread closed."

I guess that Bioware has changed its mind slightly about this issue because as of right now, the Old Republic gamers will soon be able to pursue relationships with NPC characters of either gender. According to Bioware, the reason that this ability was not simply included when the game was launched is due to a logistics issue.

"Due to the design constraints of a fully voiced MMO of this scale and size, many choices had to be made as to the launch and post-launch feature set. Same gender romances with companion characters in Star Wars: The Old Republic will be a post-launch feature," reads a statement on Bioware's forums.

"Because The Old Republic is an MMO, the game will live on through content expansions which allow us to include content and features that could not be included at launch, including the addition of more companion characters who will have additional romance options."

Sources: Family Research Council - Washington Watch Daily Radio Commentary and PCMag - Pro-Family Group Speaks Out Against Star Wars Game's Gay Relationships

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