As a proud transgender lesbian woman, the month of June (in the USA, PRIDE month may be different in other countries) each year often involves a lot of mixed emotions for me. First off, there is the obvious pride that is felt by being a member of this ever-growing community. Then there is the apprehension about the frequent inter-community conflicts, misunderstandings, exclusionaryisms, appropriations from both inside and outside of this wonderful community. There is a celebration of the amazing people, support systems, civil rights progresses and victories, and the amazing history that is found within the community. And then there is also the constant fear of attacks, abuses, appropriations, and focused exclusions that come from both outside and inside of the community by those who do not understand our community, those who choose not to learn about our community, and those who actively seek to do harm to our community.
But, despite all of the negatives that affect the LGBTQIA+ community around the world (and across all worlds in the RPG universes) we here at RPG Storytelling as so excited to celebrate PRIDE MONTH 2021 with all of you.
From the beginning of time . . . or at the very least from the inception of roleplaying games . . . LGBTQIA+ characters (and their players) have inhabited many a game table or virtual game table. These characters have explored many lands, planets, planes of existence, and various degrees of heroism and sanity against the ancient gods (I'm looking at you Cthulhu), aliens, dragons, monsters, and occasional party members, among others. In some instances that character's gender and/or sexual identity may have been known, while in other instances, it might have been hinted at in some small ways (or not at all) as that identity was all but hidden or unspoken by the character.
The introduction of LGBTQIA+ identities into roleplaying games can bring with it many interesting interactions between players, characters, and the numerous NPCs (Non-Player Characters). Yes, there is always the possibility of non-acceptance, aggression, exclusions, or various other oppressive behaviors from other players or characters, but there is also the wonderful possibility of complete acceptance, celebration, and improvement of relationships between those same players and characters.
For some players, building characters who might have one or more LGBTQIA+ identities, RPGs may be a fun way to explore the possibilities of and a way to learn more about a particular gender or sexuality identity. And sometimes this could even be an excellent way for a player to test out their own wonderful identity through their character, without necessarily having to expose that identity before the player is ready to do so.
LGBTQIA+ players and characters have been making appearances in roleplaying games since the very beginning. With the continued progress of civil rights work by those in and allied to the LGBTQIA+ community, the inclusion of the various gender and sexuality identities within all manner of games (RPGs, video games, board games, etc.) continues to expand and develop. And because of popular shows like Critical Role, High Rollers, and RPG Storytelling, we are beginning to see an ever-growing inclusivity of all members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
During all of June 2021, we will be offering several gender and sexuality related blogs and services to help support and celebrate all of our LGBTQIA+ players on this world and the many LGBTQIA+ characters on all of the RPG worlds that can be imagined.
You are loved, supported, celebrated, and cherished for being exactly who you are. We love you!!
Sarah Flowers RPG Storytelling