You may have heard that, following a disappointing launch, Square-Enix is going to re-debut Final Fantasy XIV. According to the company itself, the staff listened to all of the complaints about FF XIV, and have, quite nobly, entirely overhauled the game:
Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn is not an expansion, it's not an update to the original. We at Square-Enix consider it a completely new game that we've built from the ground up that will give players a completely new experience compared to the original.
As for same-sex marriage, this is an extremely controversial topic that has been under discussion in the MMO world for the past few years. First we would like to start out with opposite-sex marriage, and then consider the feedback from our players in order to make a careful decision.I can't say whether or not it will be possible at this point in time. I'd like to keep dialog open with our players as we deliberate the matter.
As it is impossible to read minds (...I'm pretty sure...), we can only speculate as to what the producers are looking for in that dialogue with their players, and what the resultant response would be. Will they cave if the homophobes come out in droves? Will they cave if the queer players grovel at their feet for long enough, or get angrier than the homophobes? Are they hoping
to drum up press controversy will encourage a greater dialogue about their relaunch?
Having originally planned a most-likely-too-lengthy opinion piece about the matter, this former Final Fantasy XI fiend took a moment to breathe and chilled out a little. This is an MMORPG, I thought, not a real place. And where I live, and am married to a person of the same gender, equal marriage has been law for almost ten years - it is not at all controversial any more. But the rest of the world is different, and straight people get all wound up in knots about this; at least these guys, with all their heterosexual privilege, want to talk about it rather than stay silent and hope no one notices.
But one can't help wondering why this is actually an issue, and even the insinuation that the company might not want to do something gay because it might hurt sales is odious.
One way or the other, in Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn thinly-veiled elves will be able to marry cat women - as long as they're not gay about it. If this, or the sort of casual homophobia that considers people of the same gender loving each other "controversial," upsets you, do tell the folks at Square-Enix what you think. You can do it here, or here, or through the Twitter, or whatever else the kids are up to these days.
[pre-text image via: joystiq]