Assassin’s Creed Shadows’ next drama is an LGBTQ+ scandal

Assassin’s Creed Shadows’ next drama is an LGBTQ+ scandal
Images via Ubisoft

Written by 

Tom Chapman


23rd May 2024 17:07

Oh no, they've made the black samurai from Assassin's Creed Shadows part of the LGBTQ+ community. Well, that's that then, we definitely won't be buying now. In case you don't know, we're being sarcastic. The next Assassin's Creed is caught in yet another row, and this time, it's all about who's jumping into bed with who. 

It feels like the fourteenth mainline instalment in the long-running series should actually be the thirteenth because it seems Assassin's Creed Shadows is having nothing but bad luck. With the game's artwork leaking ahead of Ubisoft's official reveal, there was outrage that we dared have a black samurai in Sengoku Japan.

Assassin's Creed Shadows hit with LGBTQ+ controversy

We've already covered how Yakuse is a historical figure from real life, but for an ever-growing community of Shadows haters, that's not enough. As the game got lost in a murky sea of race rows, it now has to contend with backlash about the sexualities of Yasuke and the female protagonist, Naoe. 

As spotted by That Park Place, there's an interesting line in Yauke and Naoe's character descriptions on an Ubisoft blog post about Shadows. Here, it mentions how "Naoe and Yasuke's disparate personalities also lead them to have different relationships and rapports with other characters."

Saying they "don't always feel the same way about people, nor do people always feel the same way about them," it then goes into romance options. The post clarifies, "Romantically, they will also attract and be attracted to different types of people. Through the pair, players will get to experience a multitude of relationships."

You can imagine there was all the usual grumbling that the writers are appealing to 'woke' gamers in 2024. One critic said, "Lol, inclusivity strikes again," while another added, "Lets see how many games they will sell moving forward." A third raged, "Oh good lord. We can’t just play a game about assassinations now there’s romance in it for no reason."

Assassin's Creed's long LGBTQ+ history

Ned Wyert trans NPC in Assassin's Creed Syndicate
Click to enlarge

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It seems these angry gamers are forgetting the franchise has a long history of flying its LGBTQ+ flag. Back in the OG game, it's heavily implied Abu'l Nuquod is gay, while Syndicate's Jacob Frye is canonically bisexual, and the same game included Ned Wynert as a trans man. 

The most famous example is Assassin's Creed Odyssey letting you romance whoever you wanted. As you could pick between playing as Alexios or Kassandra, it marked the major milestone of the protagonists being bisexual. The same could be said for the female and male versions of Eivor in Valhalla, so it's nothing new.

There are those simply for another reason to hate Assassin's Creed Shadows, and in an era where the brilliant Hades 2 is getting similar hate for wearing the rainbow with pride, Ubisoft was likely always going to get caught in the crossfire of this one. We doubt this will actually impact the game's bottom line, but in today's 'woke' culture war, you never know. 

Tom Chapman
About the author
Tom Chapman
Tom is Trending News Editor at GGRecon, with an NCTJ qualification in Broadcast Journalism and over seven years of experience writing about film, gaming, and television. With bylines at IGN, Digital Spy, Den of Geek, and more, Tom’s love of horror means he's well-versed in all things Resident Evil, with aspirations to be the next Chris Redfield.
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