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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.