Nintendo Removes Controversial Scene From English Version Of Fire Emblem Fates

Illustration for article titled Nintendo Removes Controversial Scene From English Version Of Fire Emblem Fates

When Fire Emblem Fates launched in Japan last year, there was controversy over a scene that was perceived as homophobic. Nintendo says that part won’t be in the English version.

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The aforementioned scene sees the player character (you) use a “magic powder” to make Soleil, a woman who’s into women, like men. Or rather, it causes her to see men as women. In the game, it’s apparently proposed as a solution to Soleil’s lack of composure around women she’s attracted to. She tells the player character that she wants to be a “strong and cool woman.” The solution—spiking her drink and, in essence, making her attracted to men—came off as unsettlingly similar to practices like gay conversion therapy.

In a statement received by Kotaku (first reported by Nintendo World Report), Nintendo confirmed that they’re changing that part of the game’s English localization:

“In the version of the game that ships in the U.S. and Europe, there is no expression which might be considered as gay conversion or drugging that occurs between characters.”

They did not clarify what—if anything—will take the scene’s place, or if the player character (male or female) will still be able to romance Soleil.

It’s worth noting that Fire Emblem Fates will have same-sex romance/marriage options. Thing is, the game is launching with multiple versions—Birthright and Conquest—and you’ll only be able to get male/male romance in one version and female/female in the other. What fun.

To contact the author of this post, write to nathan.grayson@kotaku.com or find him on Twitter @vahn16.

DISCUSSION

nathangrayson
Nathan Grayson

It occurs that my last paragraph could come off as me sounding all curmudgeonly about Fire Emblem in general. I’m not! I adore Fire Emblem. I fondly remember being utterly absorbed by Sacred Stones’ extremely long epilogue (I didn’t let a single character die) during a childhood family holiday dinner. I’m that kind of Fire Emblem player.

It’s just like, come on Nintendo. Let me enjoy every element of the main game without all this version nonsense. I like how different the two sides’ stories/progressions seem to be, but why can’t this just be a branching plot in a single game? Why tear up the main game and nickel-and-dime me for the pieces? Typical microtransaction/DLC nonsense is one thing, but it just doesn’t feel like a good fit here.