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February 24
2014

Wootini’s Weekly Video Podcast #161

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It’s a short one this week as I haven’t actually been gaming as much as usual. See, I’m on a deadline, and I have three seasons of a TV series to get through before the movie comes out. So basically I’ve been focused on finishing The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds so I’m done with it in time for the upcoming release of Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy. But it looks like I just might pull it off! Make the jump for a briefer episode than usual!

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February 21
2014

Is Ellie Gay? Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann Weighs In on The Last of Us: Left Behind

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When Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us took the gaming world by storm last year some gamers were surprised to find that a major supporting character was gay. Bill, the gruff old man that players encounter during the main campaign, was a refreshingly understated queer character. We weren’t beat over the head with his sexuality, nor did conflict arise solely because of it. Rather Bill simply was gay, a fact that was never explicitly conveyed but rather discovered by players through subtle hints over the course of their travels with him.

We reached out to Naughty Dog about the character, and had a chance to speak with creative director Neil Druckmann. He talked about the creation of Bill, how his sexuality came about during production, and even touched on how the sexualities of most characters in the game went unexplored and were therefore open to interpretation.

This past week players got a chance to revisit the post-apocalyptic dystopia of The Last of Us thanks to the single player DLC The Last of Us: Left Behind. This DLC put us in full control of Ellie, who spent most of the first game as a computer controlled partner, as she recalls time spent with her best friend Riley.

Without spoiling *too* much, the events of Left Behind have led many gamers wondering if daring young Ellie just happens to be gay as well. There’s been a lot of debate surrounding the topic, so I decided to get to the bottom of it by reaching out to Druckmann once again.

Here’s what he had to say:

Spoilers Ahead

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February 21
2014

Wootini’s Weekly Animal Crossing Diary

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Dear Diary,

Well, after the excitement of my birthday last week, you’d think that there’d be nothing interesting going on this time around. Well, you would be wrong.

We kick things off with Valentine’s Day treats, and finish up with some silliness, with a new resident arriving in the middle of everything! Read on!

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February 19
2014

Openly Gay WWE Superstar Darren Young Joins GaymerX2

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WWE wrestler Darren Young made waves in 2013 by nonchalantly coming out of the closet when pressed by a reporter from TMZ. The WWE has since warmly embraced their superstar, who carries the distinction of being the first openly gay wrestler in the history of the sport.

Young also fulfills an important role in gaymer history being the first playable gay character to be introduced in a professional sports title, WWE 2K14. We even named WWE 2K14 one of our gayest games of the year.

Today it was officially announced that Darren Young will be making his way to San Francisco this July as a GaymerX2 Boss of Honor.

Via GaymerX:

“Darren Young’s involvement in GaymerX is tremendously exciting. We understand the struggle that athletes face in coming out, especially when they live in the spotlight,” quoted Toni Rocca, President of GaymerX. “For a member of an organization as widely watched as WWE to be comfortable with his identity and also to continue to be accepted in his line of work is a great example for all athletic fields out there. We would really like to celebrate that.”

“I am very excited to be a part of this year’s GaymerX conventionQuoted Fred Rosser aka WWE’s Darren Young,”Gay geeks and gamers around the world deserve to have their own community and I’m very proud to be a part of what should be an awesome experience”

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February 19
2014

Geeks OUT Is McKellen Me Softly

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Sir Ian McKellen has become a queer icon as one of the most prominent out gay actors working today, and he’s also become a gay geek icon for his work in the Lord of the Rings and X-Men franchises. So it’s only natural that our good buddies over at Geeks OUT would choose him as their next honoree!

Geeks OUT will be holding another one of their art show galas on Thursday, May 29 from 7:00-10:00 pm at 296 Ninth Avenue in New York City. And in the tradition of Takei Back the Night (for George Takei) and Dream Weaver (honoring Sigourney Weaver) ,they will be celebrating Sir Ian McKellen with McKellen Me Softly. Original artwork by a myriad of talents will be on display and raffled off, with proceeds going to fund Geeks OUT’s mission of dynamic LGBTQ inclusion at conventions in cities around the country. Visit their website for more details, and I hope to see you there!

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February 17
2014

Wootini’s Weekly Video Podcast #160

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I’m still healing nicely from my hernia surgery, and now grateful that Wii Fit‘s exercises are gentle enough I can use many of them to get back into the swing of things. Also this week, I played enough Fable III to finally realize why I think people were so disappointed in this installment. And while I wasn’t one of the many who picked up Bravely Default this past week, I’m glad, because there’s something more important coming out for the 3DS in a couple weeks! Make the jump and watch this week’s vidcast to see what I mean!

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February 17
2014

The Last of Us: Left Behind and AAA-Gaming’s First Queer Hero?

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My apologies for the linkbait-y sensationalist title, but it’s worth noting that very few AAA games prominently feature queer characters in any major roles, let alone playable ones. Sure we have characters like Poison and virtual-Darren Young, but neither are protagonists in their titles, instead existing as ensemble players. Other characters are the subject of endless debate, with no canonical evidence to support any sexuality (which for most, unfortunately, means default heterosexuality). Now, of course, we can’t ignore the huge leaps being made in the indie and queer game scenes.

However, as the conversation surrounding queer issues in gaming continues to grow one of the single most frequently asked questions is: When will we get a playable gay main character in a AAA mainstream title?

Well it looks like we might have just gotten one in The Last of Us: Left Behind.

Spoilers Ahead

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