Nintendo’s 3Ds game Tomodachi Life allows players to befriend, date, and (if you want access to certain features) marry a virtual partner…as long as the resulting relationship is heterosexual. The #Miiquality movement asks Nintendo to allow same-sex relationships in Tomodachi–or at least acknowledge their absence.
Tye Marini created the movement and explains in the above video (which the Miiquality Facebook says has been removed from Youtube for violating “Community Guidelines”) why being excluded from Tomodachi matters to him, his fiancee, and countless other gamers whose sexuality is blatantly ignored by the game. Marini explained the cause in an e-mail to Kotaku:
Because the game has such a huge focus on relationships, this is a problem for many LGBTQ gamers. I believe this is a significant issue that should be resolved or at least acknowledged by Nintendo, so I started a movement in hopes to convince Nintendo to add same-sex relationships to Tomodachi Life via an update, or at least ensure that it is included in a future sequel—the Miiquality movement. I believe this movement could not only potentially influence Nintendo’s stance on the issue and future game development, but the video game industry as a whole as well. If a mass audience Nintendo game like this supported same-sex relationships, it would be a huge step forward for the industry.
The Japanese version of Tomodachi Life was released last year and briefly allowed male characters to marry each other–but only because of an error. Kotaku reports that the “bug” was fixed in a matter of weeks.
Marini has set up Miiquality Facebook and Twitter pages in anticipation of the game’s June 6th release. As the dedicated gamer says in his campaign’s video, he doesn’t expect same-sex relationships to be added before the game is made available next month: Miiquality just asks that any updates or sequels have a less narrow representation of sexuality. It’s a very modest request in light of Nintendo’s very large omission.