GLAAD, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, will be celebrating its 30th annual GLAAD Media Awards this coming January. While the award have previously been focused on other forms of media from TV and Film to Literature and Journalism it seems that the latest addition to the lineup will be an award recognising Outstanding LGBTQ-inclusive content in Video Games.
The Outstanding Video Game award “…is given for an interactive experience that includes authentic and impactful LGBTQ characters or storylines.” as stated on the official description for the award. It goes on to say “Judging will take into consideration the degree to which the LGBTQ-inclusive content is effectively woven into gameplay, including player agency and the world itself.” To be eligible nominees will need to meet the following requirements.
- The video game must be publicly released in its final general release form in the United States on or before December 31, 2018.
- If released prior to January 1, 2018, the video game must contain substantial new first-party content publicly released for the game between January 1, 2018 and December 31, 2018, where the new content is the subject of consideration.
- The video game must contain LGBTQ-inclusive content that is revealed either in the game itself or through official canon by means of alternate media.
- The video game must be designed for use on at least one of the following platforms: a video game console, a handheld system, a computer running Microsoft Windows or Apple macOS, a commercial game network, a smartphone, a tablet, or a web browser.
With the date restrictions in play it does mean that some notable titles will miss out on the award such as Dreamy Daddy and Tacoma. While Naughty Dogs The Last of Us Part II, which opened Sony’s E3 Press Conference with a kiss between Ellie and her girlfriend, still does not have a release date and will most likely be nominated for a future GLAAD Media Awards.
We reached out to GLAAD about the inclusion and Vice President of Program Zeke Stokes had the following to say.
“Video games reach millions and millions of people and have the capacity to change hearts and minds with their content – or reinforce outdated stereotypes and ideas. GLAAD is working with the industry and with the gaming community to ensure that all players can see themselves represented in fair and authentic ways.”
Nominations for Outstanding Video Game must be received by November 23. We’ll have to wait and see what is being put forward but we expect Assassins Creed Odyssey, which releases next month with same sex romance options, will most likely be recognised. You can find more information on the other categories that will be awarded over at the official GLAAD website as well as eligibility for each category.