Mangagamer Pride Reminder…

Hey everybody!

So, in most civilised parts of the world, June is Pride month.  While it’s rather odd for a company that’s all about the titty porn to bring up gay rights, it’s something that comes up in our games quite a bit, and usually in a negative light.  Given the long (and rather un-sordid) history of male on male relationships in Japan, particularly as part of the oft-revered samurai culture, it’s rather depressing to see most gay characters in visual novels thrown aside as one dimensional tropes and subjects of scorn, especially since homosexual men AND women have more rights in parts of Japan than in parts of the US (though neither country has a full civil rights law regarding equality based on sexual orientation like here in the EU).

The point of all this? Remember that the gay blokes in most VN’s (especially ones for straight guys) would make most real gays cringe if they were to ever encounter them, and to treat everybody with the respect and dignity that you’d want to be treated with yourself (barring some sort of masochistic streak).

Unless, of course, they’re pirating our games.  Or actually doing some of the things that happen in Zaishuu…

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  1. MG=Fags. It all makes sense now.

    • Heh, it’s pretty obvious that the first post would be homophobic, even in this day in age with the current visual novel community we have oh-so tastefully acquired.

  2. But…but…Big Gay Wakamoto…

  3. Perhaps the best gay character in a VN I ever encountered was Hirofumi Tsubaki of Yume Miru Kusuri.

    • Totally agreed. I loved that side character. And I bet real gays could actually respect him to an extent.

      • IIRC he sexually harasses the main character a bit, and the crazed-and-cockthirsty stereotype probably annoys plenty of real gays, but he still comes across as a guy worth knowing, so that’s better than nothing. 🙂

        • True, Tsubaki’s over-attention is probably not something they’d do, but I liked they way they still at least hinted that there was more behind him that the main character knew, you know? Like,m the main character didn’t pry so we never really learned what troubles he faced–but the fact that they chose not to ignore it, and took the time to show that he *had* faced such discrimination for his tastes. I thought that was something.

  4. What ? Gay characters in eroge, anime, … aren’t realistic !!!!!!!!!!!

    omg… I’m shoku…
    So it’s the opposite of straight guys and girls you can find in eroge.

    • The difference is that gay characters only have one archetype in eroge: flamboyant girlish side-kicks that flirt with the MC. Animu girls and protagonists have variant personalities. Mention of homosexuality in VNs is usually accompanied by homophobic jokes.

      • Variant stereotypical personalities doesn’t take away from the fact that they are still cookie-cutter stereotypes…

        I would argue that the flamboyant, possibly homosexual wing-man character is probably one of the most most amusing and often captivating characters in many of these eroge. While everyone else suffers from such a strict cookie-cutter design, these characters are the ones with the most personality of all and is often the one with the most endearing and memorable lines.

        • Non-homosexual characters are given variety; homosexual character’s aren’t. Their stereotypes are based on real-life stereotypes – which just comes across as ignorant and stupid. Whereas the rest of the cast shows depth and realism, gay characters are just used as comedy devices and something to make fun of. There are no realistic gay characters in eroge.

          • Any real 3D girl would also be pissed if they could see how stereotyped girls are in male oriented eroge…

            And furthermore, Yaoi VN are different because they’re not oriented towards gay males but towards Fujoshi.

          • (for some reason there’s no reply button below le nuage’s comment)

            *Any* real 3d girl? What are we, chopped liver? 🙂

          • It’s because there’s a limit to how embedded the replies can be. I think the limits set at 4-5.

          • @le nuage:
            There are two differences:

            1. Moe anime girls usually aren’t demeaning to women. I don’t get offended when I see unrealistic men in otome games.

            2. Gay characters are only put in eroge to laugh at. I understand the point of comedic characters, but the comedy is based solely on the fact that “gay men are creepy perverts”. Which goes back to this article and discussion’s point.

          • Moe anime girls are quite demeaning to women. The idea that an entire gender can be classified into a handful of stereotypes, with most being quite submissive to some degree, isn’t something to even remotely claim as ‘realistic’.

            Just because you find gay characters as a source of comedy and are somehow offended by that, doesn’t mean everyone shares in your values. As I’ve said before, these characters often have some of the most personality of the entire cast. I find it rather sad that you have such a persecution complex on the matter when it’s really just a subjective opinion.

            And if there were to be “realistic gay characters in eroge” then they wouldn’t stand out as gay since they would be a NORMAL PERSON.

          • That is an absolutely ridiculous argument. If you don’t expect to see girls acting cute in an eroge, then what do you expect? Girls are submissive in H-scenes because that is what most men want to fantasize about. That is the same reason it isn’t offensive to see unrealistic men in otome games – visual novels are fantasy.
            Technically, any alternative treatment due to gender is sexism – even if it includes men. It’s offensive when it ends up being demeaning. If you want a visual novel with demeaning sexism, play Chain.

            Which also applies to gay character stereotypes. Anyone that doesn’t see that as demeaning obviously has no idea of the word’s definition.

          • So you’re saying that it’s okay for straight characters to be placed into stereotypical roles, but it’s not okay for gay ones…?

          • You obviously haven’t understood a word I have said. (or are just pretending to)

            The “stereotypes” of anime girls aren’t demeaning. They are created to be cute, not demeaning. Uncute characters would be nonsensical.

            Gay characters in visual novels are just demeaning and stupid. It’s not moe to see homophobia and real-world stereotypes. If you can’t see the difference then please get your head examined.

  5. I am gay for traps.

  6. Gave us Sono Hanabira series please Mangagamer x.x

  7. As a bisexual male, seeing an article like this in the homophobic visual novel community is quite refreshing. JAST would never make statements like this.

    Tsubaki is fun, but I hate how gay characters always have to have ridiculous stereotypes; even yaoi. I look forward to the day a non-effeminate gay character is in an eroge.

    • Don’t expect a fully gay character in a straight eroge.
      Since it wouldn’t be a character you could go for, the creators wouldn’t develop him as much as the mc and the winnable girls.

      It’s the same for the typicla MC’s best friend who’s almost just a funny guy who never gets laid (Sunohara in clannad for example).

      • *fully developed gay character (fixed)

      • Side characters can still get fleshed out. Good stories focus on more than just the main characters.
        Kana Little Sister fleshed out Cana and Sumako even though they don’t have their own paths.

        But that’s beside the point. The problem is that gay characters are always treated as creepy stereotypical perverts.

      • chronoluminaire

        I believe in the old classic eroge True Love, as well as the eight female characters, there was a way to get a gay ending with your male best friend.

  8. Sakuraba in Cross Channel was gay (or at least bisexual) and was one of the few characters who was always kind to you/Taichi. That was a game with an ugly situation unfolding within it, and the tension rising from that led to a lot of violence, even murder. But Sakuraba never got angry, never hurt anyone. Hell, it’s suggested he’s physically incapable of getting that pissed off. ‘course he’s also got a complete lack of common sense to the point where there are higher functioning five year olds, but no one’s perfect.

    Anyway, that’s neither here nor there. Really all I have to say to this post is thank you. Just…thank you.

  9. What game is that in the picture? Also, as a gay man that enjoys galge’s I fully support MangaGamers pride!

  10. As a gay man I’m glad to see a company be so kind. as for stereotypes go I dosen’t really bother me that much in eroge(maybe I’m just to laid back to care). By the way I can’t wait until Koihime Musou and Zaishuu seems interesting as well.

  11. First of all, cheers, MG for recognising Pride month.
    Second, remember that these games were made by Japanese people mainly for other Japanese people (usually Japanese otaku, but not always), and since Japanese otaku are usually secluded loner hikkikimori-type people, they are lots of times insecure and feel that they have to exert their manhood /some/ way. Unfortunately, this is usually why the Main Character is not voiced, b/c it gives the player the feeling that they /are/ the character.

    Western culture is not their main audience. Hence, they are not going to cater to western sensitivities, cultural concerns, etc. Gay men are viewed by Japanese society as a whole as if they are not even there, and yaoi is considered a ‘phase’ that high school and college girls (fujoshi) involve themselves in but they will eventually grow up and become ‘normal’ citizens. The same goes with gay women. This is simply a phase that they go through, but are expected to ‘grow out of it’ and get married and have children. It’s still quite a sexist society, although it /is/ getting better. They’re about where the USA is right before the Stonewall riots ( ) back in 1969. Hopefully, one day, Japanese society will respect BGLT people and treat them like straight people. Sorry about the tl;dr, but I hope somebody at least gets something out of it.

  12. So……this didn’t mean that MG was going to start releasing some yaoi games for the Fujoshi audience?
    Damn (>_<) not even an otome game? crap (=w=);
    Ah well, I'll still support :3

  13. you guys are awesome for noting Pride Month. seriously. I mean, there’s serious homophobia going on in a lot of the world, and it gets a little better every time someone says, “Guys, they’re people, too. Chill out.”

    You just went up a few notches in my book. Thanks.

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