Games industry 2023 Pride Month round up
As the gaming industry continues to prioritize diversity and inclusivity, companies are actively recognizing and supporting celebratory months like Pride, particularly in June in the United States.
Here are some of the highlights from various gaming companies:
Blizzard is introducing its first Pride Month celebration in Overwatch 2. Players will receive icons and name cards that acknowledge LGBTQIA+ characters upon logging into the game. The company has also released a short story highlighting its gender-diverse heroes. Additionally, Pride-themed merchandise is available for purchase, with proceeds going to the National Center for Transgender Equality.
Bungie has outlined several Pride Month initiatives. Destiny 2 players can access a new Rainbow Connection emote and an End of the Rainbow transportation effect. Bungie is also selling a Pride 2.0 pin set in the Bungie Store, with 100% of the proceeds for this month going to the It Gets Better Project. Donating $10 to the project through the Bungie Foundation will grant players an in-game emblem.
Crystal Dynamics has planned various activities for Pride Month. The company is conducting a month-long fundraising campaign for the It Gets Better Project. On June 28, a panel featuring LGBTQIA+ studio members will discuss their favorite LGBTQIA+ representation in gaming and provide career advice for aspiring game industry professionals. On June 30, Crystal Dynamics will collaborate with Rock M. Sakura, a RuPaul's Drag Race contestant and drag performer, for a charity stream benefiting the It Gets Better Project.
Darkpaw Games is celebrating Pride again this year with new Everquest 2 content. Additionally, users can download Pride-themed familiars from the marketplace for free. The new content will be available for download until July 9.
Iron Galaxy will host several initiatives during Pride Month. On June 15, the studio will hold a panel as part of its ongoing campaign to recruit diverse talent. The panel will feature testimonies and shared experiences from Iron Galaxy's LGBTQIA+ employee resource group. On June 25, the studio will participate in the Pride Parade in Chicago with its game development float.
Xbox Game Studios has announced a partnership with GLAAD to increase LGBTQIA+ storytelling in games and within the Xbox staff. Additionally, curated game lists focused on transgender, non-binary, and LGBTQIA+ community games will be available. Pride month streams, content, and more will also be featured.
Queer Games Bundle
The Queer Games Bundle returns for its third year, offering over 450 games, tabletop games, books, and more from nearly 300 creators. The bundle aims to elevate queer art and support queer artists in the face of challenges to their representation and work.
Riot Games continues its annual Pride Month recognition within its games. Players can access new icons, emotes, titles, and previously released Pride-themed content for free.
Sega, the publisher of Sonic, will run a charity fundraising event in partnership with Sega Pride and the Kaleidoscope Trust from June 22 to June 30. The event will be streamed on Sega's official Twitch channel and will feature various streamers. Representatives from the Kaleidoscope Trust will answer questions about their work and discuss the importance of the charity.
Sybo's Subway Surfers is launching its largest activation for this year's Pride Month. The company has partnered with the It Gets Better Project, Copenhagen Pride, and Gay Gaming Pros. In-game content and social media posts will feature LGBTQIA+ members of Subway Surfers' global community.
Twitch will feature a collection of LGBTQIA+ streamers throughout the month, celebrating their authenticity, inspiration, and community-building efforts.
Ustwo has announced several initiatives for Pride Month. The company has made a donation to the LGBTQIA+ organization MindOut. Additionally, an interview with Ustwo's David Fernández Huerta, featuring Pride in the game Alba: A Wildlife Adventure, will be available. Ustwo has also gifted copies of Gender Euphoria by Laura Kate Dale to all its employees. The book features personal stories from trans, non-binary, and intersex writers.
Wizards of the Coast
Wizards of the Coast is delighted to sponsor and participate in Digipride 2023, a three-month-long celebration of the LGBTQIA+ gaming community on Gayming Magazine and Twitch. The company's schedule of events can be found on Gayming Magazine's website. Other gaming sponsors of Digipride include Xbox, Marvelous Europe, and Devolver Digital.
Zynga has partnered with the non-profit organization It Gets Better Project. Zynga and Take-Two will donate $50,000 to support the initiative to connect and support LGBTQIA+ youth worldwide. Zynga's celebration includes interviews with staff members of different genders and sexualities and Pride-themed content and events in various games.
Source: Jeffrey Rousseau, Staff Writer at GamesIndustry.biz