There’s always something that you never knew you needed, and the Gayming Awards may be just that. If you’re after a way to celebrate LGBTQ representation within video games, you can do so this February, with The Gayming Awards set to broadcast worldwide on Twitch at www.twitch.tv/gaymingmag/ on February 24th 2021, at 8pm GMT (3pm ET, 12pm PT). With the award show, we’ll show off so many amazing categories, including Gayming Awards 2021: Best LGBTQ Narrative, sponsored by Hangar 13.
For Gayming Awards 2021: Best LGBTQ Narrative, we look at the game’s story and how compelling it is for LGBTQ+ audiences. For example, a game may have some incredible, authentic representation, but is unfortunately let down by the story as a whole. With this award, we look at the best of both worlds.
Check out just which LGBTQ Narratives stand out from the crowd, and what our judges had to say about them!
Borderlands 3: Guns, Love, and Tentacles
“Despite the absurdity of the Borderlands universe, Wainwright & Hammerlock’s relationship has been both sweet and emotionally authentic. Best of all, their wedding – which served as the focus of an entire DLC pack – seriously explored their connection, commitments and, crucially, doubts on the run up to their nuptials. Of all the places you could expect to find a touching and resonant exploration of same-sex marriage, Borderlands 3 was an unexpected one, but it was all handled brilliantly.”
“The whole DLC is dedicated to a gay wedding. Outside of Fallout 1’s near offensive portrayal of gay marriage, no other game has ever tackled same-sex marriage with the same understanding perspective as shown in Guns, Love and Tentacles.”
“If Found follows the protagonist, Kasio, as they return home to Ireland and try to find where they fit in a world that doesn’t want to believe they are trans. It’s touching, beautiful and the best game I’ve played of 2020.”
“If Found is a game that doesn’t just want to convey trans trauma for the sake of cis people. It wants to show you the psychological effect it has on a person to be denied their very existence by people who are supposed to love them. More importantly, it shows that family isn’t just blood and that even when your blood lets you down, there are always going to be people around that’ll help, support, and love you for who you truly are.”
Tell Me Why
“Tell Me Why is one of the most fascinating games that not only has LGBTQ representation but delves deeper into found families and communities. Found families are something that deeply resonates with a lot of queer people and I really enjoyed how Tell Me Why addresses that in their narrative.”
“Exploring a trans storyline via twins revisiting their past is an interesting way to confront representation head-on, which is something most games, outside of perhaps indies, have failed to do.”
The Last of Us Part II
“The Last of Us Part II is the most pivotal, fascinating piece of storytelling that has ever graced the video games industry. We have a lesbian protagonist that goes through both love, loss, and the cruelty and injustice of vengeance… Ellie has everything a male protagonist like Kratos has – and it all comes together alongside the powerful story of this sequel.”
“I am nominating the entire narrative buildup that allowed this particular scene to exist: The farm scene between Ellie, Dina, and Dina’s son
JJ was the most touched I have ever felt by a game. It was written by a queer woman of colour – and it really shows. In games with queer characters, you likely only ever see the struggle, the pain, the anguish that leads to The End. You never see what happens after – you’re never allowed to see yourself happy or thriving and just LIVING. It felt so special to me to just see two queer women living and loving each other and the home they build amidst such a cruel world.”
The Gayming Awards are proudly supported by…
Jagex – Publisher of RuneScape and the Home of Living Games
Creative Assembly – a craft-led studio with over 33 years’ experience
Sold Out Games – a world-leading video game publisher with 15 years of experience
Ukie – the UK’s games and interactive entertainment industry trade body
Out Making Games – the UK games industry’s LGBTQ representation group
Games London – the agency promoting London as a hub of games making