Dead by Daylight has made one of its most popular characters gay, and opinions are everywhere.

Dead by Daylight developers announced Wednesday that David King, a character introduced to the game in 2017, is gay. Reactions ranged from elated to outraged, and a Reddit thread discussing the decision was finally blocked.

“Homophobia will not be tolerated, if you see any please report it”, a mod I wrote on the wire. “This post is blocked because it got out of hand, but check out our megathread across the update if you want to discuss anything about the update (including this).”

Dead by Daylight is a multiplayer horror game in which a team of survivors try to outwit a killer inspired by or directly taken from horror movies like A Nightmare on Elm Street and Halloween. It doesn’t need much backstory to work, but in 2019 developer Behavior Interactive added The Archives, which expanded the game’s lore with Tomes that include audio stories and animations. The latest Tome, Devotion, features a new story by David King that “explores a deep personal connection” and it’s happening now – snippets of the stories are released over time.

Other characters’ romantic preferences have been mentioned in previous Tomes – a character’s wife is mentioned, for example – but never stated explicitly, and until this new story by David King, it can be assumed that the 30 survivors of Dead by Daylight are all heterosexual. In fact, in the previous story about David King, an ex-girlfriend is mentioned. (“Her ex of hers has moved on and she doesn’t want to see her face.”)

“The fact that our character roster does not openly feature any confirmed LGBTQIA2+ representation was something we were determined to change,” Behavior Interactive said in its blog post (here is a Definition LGBTQIA2+). “By consulting extensively with the organization GaymerX, who have shared their experience in integrating LGBTQIA2+ themes into established games, we feel confident in our chosen direction.”

Several fans responded positively to the announcement, applauding the increase in representation. Some players have noted that when adding to an existing character’s backstory, rather than introducing a DLC character, Behavior chose not to use the moment as an opportunity to sell the inclusion. David King is one of Dead by Daylight’s most popular characters to play – he occupies a “comfortable top ten position”, says Behavior – and players will presumably continue to choose him for the same reasons they always have.

View more

Other fans felt the announcement was cheesy, sycophantic, or didn’t go far enough. Some would have preferred a new character had been introduced, with one argument being that it’s not impossible to think that David King was chosen at random as a symbolic gay character given his existing backstory.

“He’s literally a stereotypical British chav who would probably brag about his success with women in bars. said a player. “Bendoso flattering honestly.”

A number of negative or confused reactions also came from people who didn’t know the announcement coincided with a new David King story – or weren’t aware that Dead by Daylight contained backstories, as I did about an hour ago – and so I thought the developer consulted with GaymerX only to write a blog post that claims a character is gay. That would actually be a little weird, but that’s not the case.

The rest of the backlash comes largely from people and pundits who reject not just the idea of ​​representation, but the very identities being represented, and who took the ad as a cue for indignant provocation.

View more

Some of the posts from now topic closed on the Dead by Daylight subreddit fits that description, although much of the criticism from players is more along the lines of the “cute” comment. Commemorative posts (“As someone who has been David for years, this makes me feel pure happiness”) and counterpoints are also scattered throughout the Reddit thread. One player said he thinks others are mostly uncomfortable accepting that an established character is not who they assumed he was.

“I’m a gay guy, I had four girlfriends”, the player said. “[David King’s] Take lore will likely be a coming out story, something I can relate to and something I’m sure a lot of other gay men would feel represented. My point is that it’s hard to call this tokenism because it happens in real life with almost all gay people. We don’t come out of the womb and make everyone understand that we’re gay. Gays don’t go out even once. I have to let people find out I’m gay on their own or tell them myself every time I change jobs or meet new friends, and it’s always unnerving when I’m anticipating their reaction when confirming my orientation. For that reason I really hate this ‘well he wasn’t gay before so I don’t like him now’ argument because what happens to us in real life.”

On the game’s official forums, the Dead by Daylight Peanits community manager prepared in some of the decisions. Regarding David King’s backstory, “people usually learn things about themselves as time goes on,” they said. And regarding suggestions that a new character would have been better, Peanits said that putting the game’s first gay character behind a DLC paywall could have been considered “promoting pride for profit”, as some players have also suggested. They also noted that new characters typically don’t come with much backstory, so establishing your sexuality right away can overemphasize it. David King is a developed character and therefore his sexuality will be part of his character but not the whole character, according to Peanits.

As for the future, with the ice broken, “it will be much easier to address these issues head-on and/or in more subtle ways,” they said.

Devotion is Dead by Daylight’s 11th Tome, and released on thursday. In addition to the David King story, it also features a tale about The Twins, a pair of 17th century conjoined twins (in case you forgot what game we were talking about). There is also an updated pride amulet in the game, which can be purchased for free from the in-game store with the code “PRIDE2022”.

Leave a Comment