TOR Same sex romance with companion characters - Still not an option?

Discussion in 'Games' started by Endor_boy, Jan 4, 2014.

  1. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    I have been thinking about playing The Old Republic game.
    There was a lot of hoopla about the pay for gay supplement last year, but from what I understand the gay content is limited to one planet, where you can flirt and have one night stands, but that's it. The gay doesn't leave the planet.
    You can have opposite sex relationships that build character and plot in the rest of the game. There are supposed to be plans to add same sex romance options with new companions, but so far, nearly a year later, it still hasn't happened, and afaik, there is no projected date for these new gay companion opttions to happen.
    So I've been holding off on playing. I really want the gay companion characters as an option when I start. Otherwise, my gay character isn't going to have the same storytelling options as the hetero characters.
    So I'd have to choose between playing a gay character who's unable to have a relationship and thus my experience in the game will be a little limited, or I could play a straight character and have an opposite sex romance.
    It sticks in my craw (whatever a craw is) that I have to choose to either play as straight or have my experience limited. The role play and character development is a big part of what I'm interested in.

    So anybody have any thought or news on this? I'm a little frustrated that there is this game I want to play, but I can't play as myself, and at this point I don't know if they're really going to deliver the equality they said they would.
    I expect the next wave of Star War games, or the next, somewhere down the line, the gay option will be standard.
    Contessa and VanishingReality like this.
  2. moosemousse CR - FF:UK South

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Oct 3, 2004
    star 6
    I'm hoping that games will stop differentiating between same-sex and opposite-sex relationships at some point. The Sims 3 does allow all sims to romance each other and Mass Effect has had same-sex relationships since ME2 (ME1 had a gender neutral character so romancing them as a fem!Shep doesn't really count as same-sex to me), so the signs are hopeful. As for TOR, I couldn't find anything helpful, though I didn't have long to look.

    Oh, and this helps with the 'craw' thing: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/craw
    Endor_boy likes this.
  3. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    It is annoying that tptb are acting like it's some huge job to make gay companions. I can't see where it would be all that difficult to let the existing companions react to the pov character in a gender neutral way, effectively making all companions bisexual. That should be a quick fix that would please many people and take nothing away from anyone.
    It's worth pointing out that ME2 only had same sex relationships for the female Shep. Male Shep couldn't get a boyfriend until ME3.
    The Sims have had same sex relationships since way back in the first version of the Sims.
    I do agree that the future for gay equality is looking more and more hopeful.
  4. TaradosGon SWTV Mod - Like Palpatine with animals

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 28, 2003
    star 4
    You don't get all companion characters from level one. Some you get around level 7-9 and others you don't get until around level 40.

    I would imagine any future companions that they include, regardless of sexual orientation, are only going to appear beyond level 40 (or more likely level 55) as they presumably would increase the level cap again sometime in the future.

    I don't think they are going to retroactively go back and create gay romance options from the very beginning, unless they can tweak dialogue options with existing companions to make them go either way - which I honestly would see as the easiest route.
    Endor_boy likes this.
  5. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    You'd think tweaking the dialogue would be really easy, but I'd guess that if they were going to do it, they'd have done it by now. Supposedly the plan is to have gay companions added as they go, but they're sure not breaking any speed records getting that done.
    And then there's the issue where gay companions will only be available at higher levels. There's just all kind of inequity still going on there.
  6. Beezer Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 5, 2013
    star 4
    Here's the anticipated breakdown of same sex relationships if they ever get implemented:

    1% - real world homosexual men with male characters having male companions
    1% - real world homosexual women with women characters have female companions
    98% - straight men playing women characters with female companions :D
    Lazy Storm Trooper likes this.
  7. 07jonesj Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 16, 2010
    star 4
    You're right, it's a quick fix. And it can be implemented awfully. Have you seen Anders in Dragon Age II? It's almost impossible to not flirt with him, and even if you somehow miraculously avoid it, you get rivalry points! WTF!

    If they're going to create gay characters, I'd prefer they create gay characters. Bisexual characters should have different content depending on the player's sex. Simply put, if they're not going to put the effort in, don't bother.

    While it's true the Asari are mono-gendered, I'd certainly class them as a distinctly female race, and not a gender neutral race. Firstly, they have the biology of human females (apart from the skin tone and the head crests), and they're all voiced by female actresses.

    So I would class that as a same-sex romance in ME1.
    Last edited by 07jonesj, Jan 5, 2014
    Contessa and Endor_boy like this.
  8. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    It's an interesting thought there, that just making the straight characters be bi or at least available to the main character as a love interest would be less authentic. I'm not sure I agree with that. I haven't played OR yet, but I'd think the companions should work well with either orientation. I don't think there's something distinctively different that has to be done to differentiate the characters by orientation, especially when you're talking about some characters that aren't even human. I'm not so sure that gay or bi characters would or should have different content depending on the character's gender.
    07jonesj likes this.
  9. Legolas Skywalker Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 2012
    star 6
    Dragon Age Origins had same sex romance
  10. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 9

    The way I see it, there should simply be romance options. So if you play a Female This or Male That, your NPC followers can be romanced regardless of their gender. After all, fantasy settings haven't had Christianity to corrupt their views of sexuality.
    Chewgumma, Endor_boy and Penguinator like this.
  11. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    That's what I thought too. Just having all companions be romancable by either gender would open up the greatest amount of storytelling options.
  12. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    According to Bioware (whether you believe them or not), they intended to implement every companion being romanceable by both genders as an after-launch feature. Both George Lucas and Disney being fairly open about same-sex relationships being compatible with family-friendly values meant this was never an issue with the license.

    However, this proved to be a ginormous pain in the ass and found this was almost impossible to program in. They'd literally have to scrap all of their existing work on the companions and start over. Hence why it's a single planet they implemented new romances on and not a deliberate attempt at segregation. Others, as gamers can be a cynical lot, believe this is a rather cynical means of forcing gay-content interested players to buy the Expansion.

    Anyway, you're not missing much. Most of the romance content isn't available til WAY-WAY late in the game. It's not like Dragon Age where you can start flirting at the start.
    Last edited by Charlemagne19, Jan 7, 2014
  13. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    I don't really get why it would be so hard to hard the companions react in a gender neutral way. The companions would only react to gender at all if they were programed to do so.
    I also don't really get why they don't just release a couple of new companions into the main game, that seems like it would've been a lot easier, and more satisfying that the gay segregated planet.
    I wasn't aware that George Lucas is so gay friendly. I was vaguely under the impression that he wasn't, but I'm not sure where I got that impression from. Glad to hear otherwise.
  14. Penguinator RPF Modinator and Batmanager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    May 23, 2005
    star 6
    Well, you can't "just release" content into a game. It needs to be produced, which means you need someone to come up with an idea, someone to script it, someone to edit it, someone to act it, then you need folks to program it, generate character models and animation (based on concept art, which needs to be produced too), then tested, tweaked, given the various seals of approval, then implemented into the game, which means folks have to download it from servers that need maintaining. This is all totally feasible, but it's not like you just flip a switch.
  15. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    All I'm talking about is just having the companions react to the main character in a gender neutral way. It seems like they should've just done that to start with, since they programed them to be "Straight" it would've been just as easy in the beginning to make them all "bisexual". At the most now though they'd just have to turn off whatever makes them react differently to male and female characters. That would take some programming, but shouldn't require scripts and acting and all that.
  16. Penguinator RPF Modinator and Batmanager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    May 23, 2005
    star 6
    Except for gender pronouns in dialogue.

    I totally agree with your main point, but it's not just flipping a switch on or off.
  17. VanishingReality Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 21, 2013
    star 3
    I get some cool pairings out of the legacy chart even if they are just between my characters and not the companions. I did notice that there is a ridiculous lack of flirting opportunities even when comparing male and female chars. The discrepancy doesn't even make sense like why is my male Jedi Knight a million times more perv than any of my female Sith etc? Should be the other way around
    Last edited by VanishingReality, Jan 9, 2014
    Endor_boy likes this.
  18. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    I just don't think that changing a few pronouns would be such a huge deal, which is pretty much all it would take to let the existing companions be available for same gender romance.
  19. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    The male characters get more flirt opprotunities that the female characters? That's pretty sexist and wrong. There shouldn't be any differences in the role playing choices available for different genders.
  20. Ramza JC Head Admin and RPF Manager

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    Jul 13, 2008
    star 7
    It's not a big deal from a macroscopic standpoint relative to, say, making the game in the first place, but traditionally patches are a very straightforward numerical tweak in a few key places - rebalancing means changing value X to Y in position Z, for all Z deemed necessary. Re-recording new dialogue, animation changes, and the like to accommodate new pronouns actually is fairly involved, since you've got to redo the whole line to make the flow sound correct. Then account for every single one of those lines and it can quickly become an intensive order.

    Is it a change they should make? Yes. But it's not as quick a change as you're making it out to be.
    Penguinator likes this.
  21. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    I can see where the new animation might be an issue.
    As for dialogue, they could've avoided all that trouble if they'd just released the game with the same sex content up front instead of making vague promises of equality down the road.
  22. Ramza JC Head Admin and RPF Manager

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    Jul 13, 2008
    star 7
    Yes, but this is also the company that somewhat infamously originally filtered the words "gay" and "lesbian" on their forums for this exact game. I could probably go on at length about my precise thoughts on how Bioware goes about the issue of sexuality politics, but the tl;dr version would boil down to "I'm not entirely surprised they didn't do something from the outset."
    Endor_boy likes this.
  23. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    Bioware should have done this and it would have been very-very easy. However, they didn't and planned to change it later and found it unfeasible. As a result, yeah, the gay gamers and those with interest in gay content got cheated. My hope is that future expansions will contain more gay romances off this one planet so it's not QUITE so embarrassing.

    The cynical side of me also wonders if Bioware wasn't testing the waters for reaction and THAT's why they didn't plan it from the outset.
    Last edited by Charlemagne19, Jan 9, 2014
    Endor_boy likes this.
  24. Endor_boy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2013
    star 1
    It does seem strange that they weren't aware of how difficult it would be to have the pre existing companions be made to be optionally gay as an add on later. You'd think they'd have been aware of the issues going in.
    Beyond embaressing, it's very limited in content as the gay only happens on the one planet, whereas straight romances can be part of the ongoing story with companions.
  25. Penguinator RPF Modinator and Batmanager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    May 23, 2005
    star 6
    What's strange about it? They made a conscious decision - Ramza mentioned their dubious past with regards to this sort of thing. It should hardly be surprising.