February 7, 2024
Gaming is one of the most popular entertainment industries of our time. Throughout the last decade, it has reached an audience more significant than ever before. Part of the gaming industry’s success lies in technology development. But new technology doesn’t necessarily lead to a bigger audience. In our ever-evolving society, it’s important to include every player, regardless of gender. In this article, we’ll look at some of the most gender-inclusive games of 2023.
For a long time, the world of video games has been overrun by specific gender tropes. The most prominent were those of renegade protagonists rushing to save their “damsel in distress.” Even though women comprise almost half of all gamers, they are still underrepresented in the industry. According to this article published by the University of Glasgow, even when featured in video games, female characters have less dialogue than male characters in 94% of games. In addition, male characters talk to other male characters more often. However, female characters rarely speak to other female characters. And even when they do, these dialogues rarely pass the “Bechdel test.” In recent years, this has started to change. With our society growing and evolving, video game developers are meeting the needs of their audience. This has shown to be especially true in 2023, with gender-inclusive hits such as Baldur’s Gate 3 hitting the shelves. Here are some of our top picks if you’re looking for more gender-inclusive games to add to your library.
Baldur’s Gate 3
At the top of our list for most gender-inclusive games of 2023 is Larian Studios’ hit RPG Baldur’s Gate 3. There are a few reasons why Baldur’s Gate 3 was one of the most popular games of 2023. First of all, it features a beautifully crafted fantasy world and a rich and complicated story. In addition to that, it has a vast amount of choices you can make throughout your gameplay. The game’s in-depth character customization system is one of the things that makes it a gender-inclusive hit. Unlike standard character customization systems where you can pick between two genders, Baldur’s Gate 3 lets you completely customize your character’s body. In addition, it enables you to pick out the pronouns for your character, featuring they/them pronouns as well. This offers a far more fluid expression of gender than most games do. With the addition of these elements, the developers of Baldur’s Gate 3 have made an amazing, inclusive, and immersive game. Being the winner of the The Game Awards award for game of the year, Baldur’s Gate 3 has proven that inclusivity can make all the difference.
In Stars And Time
In Stars And Time is a lesser-known but nonetheless beautiful turn-based RPG developed by inserdisc5. This game follows a diverse party of adventurers stuck in a time loop. Siffrin, the game’s main protagonist, needs to solve various puzzles and defeat enemies to get out of the time loop. In addition to its adorable graphics, In Stars And Time features a heartwarming story about inclusivity and found family. The main party features companions of all genders while offering queer inclusivity as well. In addition, the faith featured in the game is based around The God of Change. This God allows the characters to change themselves throughout their lives, be it their name, appearance, or gender. All in all, In Stars And Time is a wonderful, adorable game that will surely win over your heart.
One of the more interesting games released in 2023 was Stray Gods, a roleplaying musical adventure game developed by Summerfall Studios. In this game, you play as Grace, blessed by an amazing musical talent, after a Muse dies in your arms. The main objective is to prove you didn’t kill the Muse by performing impressive musical numbers before the Chorus – a group of Greek gods. Not only does this game feature a female protagonist, but it also lets you make friends, foes, and lovers of all genders. Stray Gods is a great and innovative game that strays away from the heteronormativity present in many of today’s games.
The lack of gender inclusivity is an important issue our society faces today. It comes as no surprise that the question of gender inclusivity has made its way into the gaming industry as well. And that’s rightfully so since almost half of all gamers worldwide are women. To ensure a better and more inclusive space for every gamer, developers have finally started to take this issue more seriously. With the large number of gender-inclusive games published in 2023, we can be hopeful for the future of inclusive gaming for everyone.