April 19, 2024

Screenshot: The Pokémon Firm / Kotaku

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet’s first DLC, The Teal Masks, is lastly out, and it takes the participant and all their pocket monsters on an alternate pupil program to the land of Kitakami. On this wondrous land they’ll discover new Pokémon to catch, new buddies to make, and, as followers have found, restrooms which can be gender-neutral.

I, like many different gamers, stumbled upon this discovery within the first 10 minutes of arriving in Kitakami, on the group middle the place my character was staying. Within the foyer, you discover three restrooms. The boys’s and ladies’s restrooms are designated by Pikachu tails, with the previous that includes the flat edge on the finish that male Pikachus have and the latter displaying the rounded, heart-shaped finish females do. The third restroom is marked by only a silhouette of Pikachu’s head, and while you look at it, the textual content reads “This restroom can be utilized by anybody!”

Shep is shown examining the gender-netural restroom and the text reads "This restroom can be used by anyone!"

Screenshot: The Pokémon Firm / Kotaku

It’s a small factor in a universe that has actually had queer characters and even what appear to be in-universe references to queer tradition, like ex-Galar Champion Peony probably being a homosexual icon with a largely male fanbase. However quite a lot of that has been subtext, and having gender-neutral restrooms is a reasonably specific recognition of queer and non-binary characters current throughout the Pokémon universe. It’s nice to see, and hopefully this implies we may see an precise gender-neutral character creation possibility within the sequence’ future, with they/them or different pronoun toggles in later video games.

Even when Pokémon has stored a lot of its acknowledgment of queer id buried in subtext, the franchise has amassed a giant queer fanbase through the years, particularly surrounding the Fairy kind.

The Teal Masks is the primary of two DLCs coming to Scarlet and Violet, with the second, titled The Indigo Disk, set to launch later this yr. Collectively, they make up the Hidden Treasure of Space Zero enlargement that wraps up the story of the principle sport.

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