Tuesday, March 5, 2024
Games NewsNews

Gay romance expansion The Symbiant Re: Union to be banned in Russia

On February 1, developer HeartCoreDev announced that, like the main game, its gay romance expansion The Symbiant Re: Union will soon be banned in Russia due to a Steam user reporting the game to authorities.

“SAME FATE AS THE MAIN GAME: A steam user informed us that he reported The Symbiant Re: Union to the authorities so, it will be unavailable to get in Russia on Steam,” HeartCoreDev wrote on Twitter. “If that’s where you are located, get it WHILE YOU CAN.”

Russia has had a ban on “LGBTQ propaganda” since 2013, with the explicit aim of keeping children from being exposed to depictions of LGBTQ+ people, and to prevent these experiences from being portrayed as part of the norm. President Vladimir Putin signed an expanded version of this ban in late 2022, seemingly as part of the human rights crackdown his government imposed during the beginnings of the conflict with Ukraine.

According to this expanded version of the ban, individuals can be fined up to 400,000 rubles ($6,370) for “LGBT propaganda” and up to 200,000 rubles ($3,185) for “demonstrations of LGBT and information that encourages a change of gender among teenagers.”

Both the core game and The Symbiant Re: Union would definitely fall under the parameters of this ban, as they are explicitly about a queer relationship between two male characters, and both include 18+ patches that allow players to view sexual content between them.

During the original The Symbiant we’re introduced to two friends, human Danya and alien Juniper, who are manning a delivery ship called The Ameretat. Their last gig has left the ship damaged, and their bank accounts empty, so when they’re offered a lucrative job transporting a mysterious and beautiful alien named Brahve, they don’t have much of an option.

Danya and Brahve start developing a connection during their journey, but how will it be affected by the strange noised Danya hears from the other man’s room at night?

In The Symbiant Re: Union, we get to see Danya and Brahve after the two endings of the original game. This expansion includes two stories, both of which include pretty significant spoilers for the main game, so be warned there.

Players in Russia who want to check out this expansion will need to download it quickly, as it will soon be gone from the Steam store in their region.

Ty Galiz-Rowe

Ty is Gayming Magazine's deputy editor and esports expert.