Nintendo’s Splatoon Doesn’t Make Assumptions About Players’ Gender
You're a kid now. You're a squid now. You're a hey-don't-let-us-tell-you now.
Lots of games allow you to choose your character’s gender, but a fair amount of them still default to dudes and position female characters as a kind of secondary option—not Splatoon, though. Nintendo’s colorful answer to grim dudebro shooters, which launched on Friday, isn’t making any assumptions about who’s at the controls or their gender preferences.
When you start your game, the gender selection screen looks like this:
It’s kind of a small detail, but you’re simply asked to choose an option without one coming up pre-selected. Kotaku points out that Pokémon X/Y took a similar approach, but even those games prompted, “Are you a boy? Or are you a girl?” making one option sound a little more likely to be the standard.
Well done, Nintendo. In some ways, it’s the surreptitious, seemingly minor details that can perpetuate stereotypes more than anything.
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