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Queer representation database Queerly Represent Me received a major update early this week, making the site’s detailed discussion of gender, sexuality and relationship representation more accessible and easier to navigate.

The database lists hundreds of video games, celebrating positive representation and noting where things could be improved. Much of the information is based on a Queer Representation survey from 2016, the results of which are also available to peruse on the site. Many entries include links to external sources, collating the voices of many authors and publications to create a thorough exploration of various concerns.

Founder Alayna Cole explains the importance of QRM to individual players and to our industry:

“Positive, diverse representation in media can achieve two goals: it can improve lived experiences of those who identify as part of a minority group by providing role models and fostering improved self-esteem; and it can help those outside of the same minority group to understand and empathise with new perspectives. Discussing and researching how queer content features in the media we consume—including the games we play—helps us to encourage more diverse representation and promote these positive impacts.”

The database recommends a lot of positive representations of minority groups, but does not limit research to these titles. Below is an excerpt from the entry on From Software’s Souls series. The commendations and concerns are specific and clear, which makes it easy for readers to empathise with the perspectives of those within a minority group.

“Although character creation is limited to binary genders, which is frustrating for non-binary or gender non-conforming players, those binary genders are represented well. Armour has very little difference between how it appears on the frames of men and women, and there are no ‘sexy running’ animations for women, which was important to one respondent.”

Spending some time exploring QRM has helped me personally to recognise issues that I have been oblivious to, and I recommend anyone to do the same; you may find solace in discovering that others have similar concerns as yourself, or you may learn a thing or two. The discussion within QRM is essential to our industry’s progress in becoming an inclusive space, and it is our hope at Select Start Media that QRM will continue to grow and educate us all.

If you’d like to support Queerly Represent Me, head to the GoFundMe page, or follow them on Twitter @QueerlyRepMe.