Alright, you read the rest, I want to make a series of disclaimers to avoid offense, as well as prepare my "mission statement" so to speak
I Am a fan of league, loved it for quite a while, took a break this year but otherwise, I've liked most if not all of what's been going on with it. Lorewise and gameplay wise.
I am admittedly a white, straight male. I am also a Christian and therefore I lack the perspectives held by the people in any of the communities where homosexuality is accepted and/or normal.
I do not have any issues with people who are not Christians, atheists, those with different sexual orientations than mine. In spite of the reputation that Christians tend to have. Although unfortunately, it is true in most cases.
I do not mean to call anybody in riot out, by name or by profession/ethnicity/sexual orientation, etc, etc.
However, if I could get some responses to my questions and concerns I would appreciate it.
If I sound like I'm talking down to anybody, with how many "disclaimers" I'm making, I'm sorry, but I really am trying to word my thoughts very carefully. Please understand.
To start with, I think I should talk a bit about what I know as far as lgbtq+ representation in league goes (and correct me if I'm wrong about anything).
Of course, the elephant in the room is that taric was gay because he wore pink armor and such. Although I've been out of the loop for a while I remember people wanting it to be confirmed that he was gay after he'd been reworked, but it seemed like it was decided that since it was mostly a joke to call him gay for so long it would be better if there was a champion created from the ground up to be gay, rather than retrofitting anybody to be gay.
Of course, not everybody thought this way and ideas and ships were made. Then when varus had his lore update and we saw how he was a darkin with two gay dudes in his body (their bodies?) people reacted generally positively, and accepted it. I did as well, and honestly, that might have been the best character to retroactively make gay, aside from vi depending on how you feel about that.
So with that in mind, here comes the first character introduced to us as a lesbian. She isn't particularly stereotypical, she seemingly is beloved by the community, although some people are skeptical as to how well her kit is going to pan out, and rightfully so. I am interested in knowing more about her conception as a character, as I think it might reflect somewhat negatively if she was not initially conceived as a lesbian character. I understand that the character designers iterate on champions so it can be hard to pinpoint where she was technically conceived if the design process was particularly long. But I think it's worth asking since aside from varus, We aren't outright told what a characters sexual orientation is in most cases. In some, it's obvious like with rakan and xayah. But Buy n large we aren't outright told most of the time.
I also think it's fairly coincidental that she was the first new champion that could have gone through a lengthy design process, after riots scandal as to how their work environment feels to the women and new workers working there. I understand the plight on both sides, neither have it easy, and there's really no easy solution to the problem of hiring and ensuring a diverse workforce so that nobody feels left out or unrepresented. On the other end of things, it takes time to screen employees and make sure they're the right person for the job, especially when so many people are applying, and you only have so long to hire so many qualified people.
I also think when she was made to be a lesbian matters because if it was just tacked on, just added on as an afterthought like "hey we could make her gay" just a few weeks before recording voice lines or finalizing her design for the in-game model. Or whatever the process is like late in development.
Those are things that only rioters can confirm, and if they don't want to I understand. So what can we talk about? I asked for a discussion right?
Let's say that coming out as lesbian or gay or what have you isn't being normalized/considered normal by anybody's standards. In fact, the majority of the population is strictly against anything that deviates from the norm. So in this world, riot wants to be the brave frontrunners and take a stand for what they believe in on a personal level. The best way to do it? Hype up and eventually release a champion that is outright gay/lesbian. Put more work into her character, kit, design, and in-game lines than any other so far.
That sounds great, doesn't it? If you care about representation that's what would mean the most right? So that's why I've said so much about the potential state of her inception as a lesbian. It matters how it came about because of how people might receive that kind of a societal shattering character in the real world. Now real quick lets go back to the other world. A purely hyperbolical one mind you. Where this champion is being released. Now imagine if instead of a character everybody worked super hard on. It was just a guy with an extremely stereotypical gay way of talking, somebody super flaming (for lack of a better term), and somebody who constantly makes obscene remarks about other men.
I personally, don't see this as good representation if that's what they're aiming for. I have Aspergers and I might be totally overthinking this. I'm high functioning so I'm not trying to use that as an excuse not to yell at me. I just want to say I if the representation is the goal, as well as writing a strong well balanced and developed character, this may or may not be the best way to do it. I don't know if there will be a blogpost about this, and I haven't read the lore (and I don't think much is out yet where I live) but I think this is a decent way to start talking about this before anything else comes out, rather than scrolling through jabs an accusations on twitter and reddit. Especially given how, it is hard for riot to officially take a stance on this since the sensitivities in other countries where the game is playable are not the same as ours. Especially in countries like Brazil where being openly gay is ostracised. So officially making a character gay is a geniunly bold move, since that kind of statement could potentially result in lost revenue from outraged customers.
Anyway, correct me on any mistakes/bad comments I made. Did I overthink this subject? Does anybody even care? Lemme know.