Gears 5 is almost here, it’s welcoming to queers, and the fact that it’s just one of many AAA gaming titles featuring in-game inclusivity for LGBTQPIA+ gamers means you’d better get used to it.
The latest entry in the saga for humanity’s survival (read my colleague Rachel Kaser’s review here on TNW) doesn’t just feature a playable female protagonist (a first for the franchise), it also allows you to kit out your multiplayer persona with one of numerous Pride flags representing a spectrum of LGBTQPIA+ identities. 2019 has been a great year for inclusivity in gaming and it just keeps getting better.
Apparently first spotted by Twitter user @ashiinu (above images used with permission), the game features at least 19 Pride flags representing gay, lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, transgender, non-binary, and other LGBTQPIA+ identities. The flags — or banners as they’re called in the game — can be equipped as part of your multiplayer character’s load out – they’re a cosmetic item that players select to personalize their multiplayer personas. There are myriad other banners for players to choose from that aren’t related to Pride.
HEY GEARS HAS FUCKING PRIDE FLAGS IN GAME WHAT pic.twitter.com/vRhDSm3Xzy
— akii! (@ashiinu) September 5, 2019
Gears becomes the latest AAA mainstream gaming title to welcome the LGBTQPIA+ community with in-game representation. We reported previously that Borderlands 3, one of gaming‘s most inclusive franchises, will be even more queer than its numbered predecessor, and Cyberpunk 2077 will launch next year with a character creation system that features everything except an option to choose your gender.
Our hats are off to the developers at The Coalition (Gears 5), Gearbox (Borderlands 3), and CD Projekt Red (Cyberpunk 2077) and their respective publishers at Microsoft, 2K, and CD Projekt. Their passion for inclusivity and acceptance means millions of LGBTQPIA+ gamers finally have the opportunity to see themselves represented in mainstream video games, something that helps normalize marginalized communities and their allies.