Please upgrade your browser for the best possible experience.

Chrome Firefox Internet Explorer
×

Same gender relationships clarifications?

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Story and Lore
Same gender relationships clarifications?
First BioWare Post First BioWare Post

Uluain's Avatar


Uluain
08.28.2012 , 09:09 PM | #1031
Quote: Originally Posted by Maevarr View Post
I should be thanking you and all the others who keep threads like this running.

Given Bioware's previous games, I'm still kinda disappointed that this was not included right from the start.
Well, we are told that was originally the plan, but they ran out of time & money. As of now, after several shake-ups, we are no longer even certain the content is still in the cards.

BioWare and EA both do know better, and have done better in the past. That makes this particularly disappointing.

As far as keeping the thread alive and moving, we have been told it's really all we can do to assure this issue remains at the attention of the development team. Not that we have ever seen any indication that it actually is. *HINT, HINT!*

Landerk's Avatar


Landerk
08.28.2012 , 09:58 PM | #1032
Lolz, yea it would be nice to see something.

vaneks's Avatar


vaneks
08.29.2012 , 10:31 AM | #1033
I gave up and started making my characters straight. Sucks but i got sick of waiting.

Raynezazki's Avatar


Raynezazki
08.29.2012 , 10:32 AM | #1034
I'm tempted to make my IA straight with Raina but nah I just HC him married to my Jedi (yay Legacy) and leave it at that.

Still sucks though =(

Uluain's Avatar


Uluain
08.29.2012 , 11:12 PM | #1035
It's been a while since this has been posted here, so for newer forum members who don't know the scoop, I am going to repost what information we have on same-gender content. Mind you, it's a year to six months old at this point and there have been changed with the Dev Team since, so we really have no idea how much, if any, of this is still accurate. But it's all we've got.

First is the original announcement promising same-gender romantic content will be in SWTOR, as a post-launch feature. These statements were made by then Community Manager Stephen Reid on September 12, 2011:

Quote: Originally Posted by Stephen Reid
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. 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.
He qualified this announcement with a couple more informal statements at the time:

Quote: Originally Posted by Stephen Reid
First of all, this is definitely not an audience that consists of a 'couple of people' and we're aware of that. We take this decision very seriously.

Second, it's very important to realize that this is just one of many, many content additions that will be going into the game post launch. The vast majority of our content will be of interest to the vast majority of our potential audience.

However, one of the amazing things about MMOs is that over time we can get to add things that are exciting and interesting to smaller audiences. Normally, that's not something that's addressed too far ahead of time. In this case, we felt the addition was warranted and should be addressed early.

There will be plenty of content for all to play and enjoy.
and

Quote: Originally Posted by Stephen Reid
We can't guarantee that a character you play at launch would have romance options 'unlocked' for an existing companion. It's something that will be taken into consideration when making design decisions. Not a promise it'll happen, but we'll take that feedback and relay it through to design.

We fully intend to do justice to the story in our storylines.

As you may have heard, we take story very seriously - this included.

Lastly for those of you who seem concerned that you will be 'tricked' into any romance arc in the game - all romance choices are clearly marked. You will be aware you're making those choices as you make them.
That is as much as was said by BioWare on what sort of same-gender romance would be included, and when, up until nearly six months later (now nearly six months ago) when the matter was raised again at the developer panel discussion last March. Daniel Erickson fielded the issue then (after we had made our interest plain on the Community Q&A Thread for several weeks running). The following is from a transcript of the live remarks:

Quote: Originally Posted by Daniel Erickson
This is an interesting one because it sort of lit up, and we didn't honestly -- if we should give an update on it every single time -- We've always said the same thing with it, which is that it's coming, and it's coming with story updates. And we totally understand when people hear "soon", um, maybe I should have put the TM next to it that, "writer Soon"? The writers have a much, much larger lead time than you would expect, and we wanna do any of this stuff right. We heard suggestions, and we do read the stuff, and let's talk a little about the stuff we were not willing to do. We were not willing to go in and just change all the dialogue to work for the other gender. That is not writing. That is not good storytelling.

When we do this, we wanna do it right, we wanna do it with the characters that make sense, that we always knew that we wanted to do it for those, so you guys know and we've talked about it before, it ended up being a budget and scheduling issue. There are romance arcs that we wanted to do that didn't make it in the game, we knew which characters (I'm not gonna tell you)... [some audience joking about characters] So the short answer is, it's never changed, it's still coming, it's coming when full story comes, and when is full story coming? This year. So we are still on track.
There has been no official comment since, but the initial September Announcement has appeared at the head of each version of this thread as often as it has been re-created by the Community Team (after it hits maximum length). So at least as of last June, that was still being presented as still true for the future of the game.

One interesting note has come directly from the Community Team, however, that suggest that an option not to see that the same-gender content is available -- that is, to choose a setting which would prevent the romantic prompts from appearing from same -gender NPCs -- is not being considered grew out of a prolonged and often heated discussion between proponents and opponents of such a feature:

Quote: Originally Posted by Moitteva
Discussion of the implementation of toggles to filter same gender romance options is considered discriminatory language and is neither appropriate nor allowed on the forums. Posts along this vein of discussion will be removed.
While this does not say it will definitely not be a feature, it can be inferred that when included, same-gender romantic content will be presented in the same manner as existing opposite-gender romance, with clearly marked [Flirt] prompts which one may choose or not as one pleases.

So that's all we know. We'd love to know more. The six month / one year landmark would be a nice time for that, IMO.

chuixupu's Avatar


chuixupu
08.30.2012 , 03:44 PM | #1036
All of that is nice to read, but my big fear, is that at some point between all the restructuring, someone high up decided that they need to take a totally new direction and none of those statements are valid anymore. Not just on this issue, but a lot of things. I hope so much that it's just silly, pessimistic thinking.
I'm ok with story issues taking a back seat while they try to address a lot of major technical and end-game issues, but the hope of future story arcs for me and my companions are the main reason why I continue to play this game.

I am just picturing the creative team and the financial teams duking it out over stuff.
Wardens of Fate / Alea Iacta Est
The Tarkus Legacy ~ The Harbinger/Jedi Covenant

Uluain's Avatar


Uluain
08.30.2012 , 06:03 PM | #1037
Quote: Originally Posted by chuixupu View Post
All of that is nice to read, but my big fear, is that at some point between all the restructuring, someone high up decided that they need to take a totally new direction and none of those statements are valid anymore.
That's a perfectly reasonable concern. We don't know even if it's still in, at all, but there are a few optimistic indications, though some are based on an absence of information.

In the last week give or take we did receive, via PMs from Allison Berryman to some long-time regulars on this thread, a fairly standard "sorry, no new info" reply but with assurances that when they had something new, they'd tell us. That sounds to me like this is still in the works, as there is a possibility of more news at some point.

Other indications one needs to read between the lines around the boards with what Allison and Joveth have talked about in terms of what they do. This includes monitoring hot topics and moderating threads, and this is the most-viewed thread on the front page of Story & Lore and receives -- and always has received -- dedicated and patient moderation to filter out the inevitable ugly posts.

Another thing they do is escalate big questions to those who can answer them. We can hope they do so in our case. I imagine they do. But they also need to approve what they say before they can say it. And it seems likely -- it has not been denied when I have asked flat-out -- that there is an overriding policy restricting what they can say about same-gender content at all as well as where or how they can even give us "Sorry - nothing new, guys" replies.

Unfair? Well... yes. But someone seems to think it the best way to keep a lid on likely controversy. Since discontent at the continued absence of information, and how this salts the wound of this content not having been in from the start, has been a recurring theme here and as I believe the Community Team really does have an eye on this, I think we can hope that growing dissatisfaction is at the attention of those able to do something about it, which is all the Comm Team can do for us at this point.

BumpBump's Avatar


BumpBump
08.30.2012 , 07:24 PM | #1038
Quote: Originally Posted by Uluain View Post
Well, we are told that was originally the plan, but they ran out of time & money. As of now, after several shake-ups, we are no longer even certain the content is still in the cards.

BioWare and EA both do know better, and have done better in the past. That makes this particularly disappointing.

As far as keeping the thread alive and moving, we have been told it's really all we can do to assure this issue remains at the attention of the development team. Not that we have ever seen any indication that it actually is. *HINT, HINT!*
It took them more effort to do straight and same-gender romances separately than it would have taken them to do all romance options at the same time. This was an active effort on BioWare's part to delay the content both so they could tell right-wing groups the sgr's were not in the game while stringing along their customers looking for the content. If they did not plan on playing both sides, they just had to be stupid to not see how upset this would leave such a large portion of their customers by sitting on this content. Does anyone believe finishing same gender romances was more work and appealed to less of the subscribers than adding the Cat-people as a playable race?

Uluain's Avatar


Uluain
08.30.2012 , 07:39 PM | #1039
Quote: Originally Posted by BumpBump View Post
Does anyone believe finishing same gender romances was more work and appealed to less of the subscribers than adding the Cat-people as a playable race?
Actually, yes.

A new species does not require any new voice acting -- voices for cutscene content are by class, not species. All they really have to do is create enough variety in character appearance -- phenotype, features, complexion etc. -- and assure that the gear fits without bizarre clipping.

Romance needs to be written then voiced by all eight class voice actors, as well as animated and whatever else goes into making a cutscene & hooking it into the existing game. The last we heard, from Daniel Erickson, was that it is the writing that needs the longest lead-time. Then again, the 9 months the game has been out is long enough to have a baby. If they have actually had talent devoted to this content, surely they are making some headway.

Yes, this really ought to have gone in at launch, or else all romantic content ought to have waited until post-launch. But it didn't. BioWare has never exactly apologized for the implied... well, actual discrimination. And the separate-and-inequal treatment even of discussion of the subject is just really, really unfortunate.

If you are going to be inclusive, just be inclusive. Being inclusive while treating those you are including as second-class, undervalued customers (and that is, in fact, exactly what BioWare has chosen to do), you can't expect the eventual inclusion to merit laurels and fanfares. As it stands, this is a grossly, blatantly heterosexist game. Play a male Smuggler and you are given a choice between [Flirt]ing with a female NPC or losing affection with one or both of your companion NPCs. That's just tacky.

We have been promised this content this year. That's as long as I am giving this game. I might be persuaded to wait just a little bit longer if any announced delay (which I fully expect at this point) is suitably contrite. But seeing how BioWare has chosen to treat its LGBT players and allies like crap, well... My enthusiasm is under some strain.

Edit -- this impression is to some extent softened by the care the Community Team has put into maintaining this thread, and even to the determination made prohibiting requests for same-gender content to be made able to be hidden with a button in preferences. Without ever stepping into an argument, they have moderated this thread now for eight months, and I think that they, at least, are trying to treat this topic and those to whom it's important respectfully. I just want to say that -- they're the ones who have to catch the flak. A thankless task.

Captain_Zone's Avatar


Captain_Zone
08.30.2012 , 08:29 PM | #1040
Let me just reiterate something that seems to have been forgotten by some here:

SGRAs have been promised for this year. The year is not over yet.
. OPOD
Best Dark Side Points in the game: Bounty Hunter ROFLCURBSTOMPING that nobleman on Alderaan when he mouths off.