LGBT characters of Pokemon X and Y

Pokemon X and Y versions (Pokemon’s 6th generation) brought in a lot of new fans, and made some old ones return. Personally, I did not love it nearly as much as I had previous generations (especially generation 5). It really had minimal gameplay changes besides the introduction of Fairy type and the change in Steel type. However, the new graphics of the game made people fall in love with it.

The thing I noticed the most though, was the less than ambiguous LGBT NPCs throughout the game. This isn’t the first time the Pokemon has included sexually and genderly ambigious NPCs, however this game introduced a lot that weren’t nearly as ambiguous as previous games were. (note, this is only talking about the games. The manga/comics have been more progressive for the most part [one comic has an out trans man], while the anime has been more ambiguous than both of the other forms of media).

The furthest that any game had gotten to having a fully LGBT character before X and Y was in Platinum with Maylene and Candice (which were most notable because they weren’t random NPCs, but named Gym Leaders). Maylene is a rough and tough Fighting-type Gym Leader who admires the studious Ice-type Gym Leader Candice. The dialogue in which their sexualities seem ambiguous is when they are speaking to  the player character (Lucas or Dawn) in their Villa.The dialogue goes as follows:

Maylene: ....Um, Candice?

Candice: Yes, Maylene?

Maylene: ....Oh, never mind!

Candice: (Giggle) Hmm, I like lounging here!

This, along with Maylene’s previous conversations with the player character of her admiration for Candice, seems like Maylene’s failed attempt of admitting a crush on Candice. However, nothing is entirely conclusive of this, which is why XY is more noteworthy in it’s NPCs’ conversations.

The most prominent examples in XY of these ambiguous conversations are from NPCs in Luminose City (the center city of the game). One example is in the Cafe Gallant on Estival Avenue in Luminose City, where the male cafe worker says the following:


This is pretty indicative of his potential sexual orientation.

Also, in the Restaurant Le Nah (the battle restaurant), there are two guys having dinner together that are flustered when people come up to them, and try to defend the nature of two guys having dinner together. Well, only one of them does, the other one calls them both good looking.

There are more examples within Luminose City, however the best example would be this Beauty from the Battle Maison:


The reason that this dialogue is important is because Black Belts are an exclusively male trainer class, while the Beauty trainer class is exclusively female. This means that this NPC canonically transitioned from Male to Female, making her the most open and progressive character that Pokemon has introduced.

Despite Beauty technically being more progressive than the following character, because her dialogue is indicative of her identity as a transgender person, Shauna is the most notable XY NPC that has a name. She is a friend of the player character (Calem or Serena) and she looks like this:


During a cutscene where she and the player character are waiting to watch fireworks together, she says, "We haven't even seen them yet, but I know I'll never forget these fireworks! 'Cause I watched them with you".

While this may not be as conclusive as the Beauty from the Battle Maison, it is still notable that there are a few moments where she appears to have a crush on the player character regardless of gender.

All of this evidence points to Game Freak moving towards a more LGBT-friendly attitude in their games, and one can only hope that the future generations of Pokemon will have a fully canon significant LGBT character.

on August 21, 2014