The heartaches and emotional wounds of the men you pursue are not obstacles to be overcome en route to sex, but rather fragments of real humanity that make them even more lovable—and often force you to reexamine your own intentions.During the resolution of one storyline, you're given an option when comforting one of the dads in a moment of personal crisis: You can tell him what he wants to hear or tell him what he Some of the dads have had relationships with women, some with men, but there's no agonizing about their sexual orientation and no more mention of it than there would be in a traditionally heterosexual romance.
Gray notes that while queer people—along with women and people of color—have long been expected to sympathize with straight, white cis characters, the mainstream games industry remains reluctant to ask the reverse.
And yet, this presumed lack of empathy or imagination hasn’t stopped lots of people outside the LGBT community from playing and helping make it a hit.“This is a very queer game, but it has legs longer than what a lot of people might have considered niche,” Gray says.
Spend a little more time with them, however, and these facades dissolve, revealing complicated men whose passions, secrets and struggles cannot be neatly contained in cookie-cutter character types.
Yes, the Goth Dad enjoys cloaks and long walks in graveyards, and the Jock Dad loves getting in his reps at the gym—but they both struggle to cope with rebellious children, shattered marriages, and the parts of their lives that they are ashamed to share with the world.
“You’re not going to be sleeping on a mattress surrounded by empty bottles of Mountain Dew. A daddy who has their life together enough to take care of another person is probably more emotionally mature than a twentysomething dude might be.”If ’s hit status suggests any one thing, though, it's that entrenched ideas about what kind of games can be successful and who wants to play them have less to do with reality and more to do with the self-fulfilling prophecy that the industry has become.
“The argument ‘oh, I don’t know if it’s going to sell’ isn’t going to fly anymore," Gray says.
They simply follow their hearts, and any obstacles they face are a result of emotional and personal complications, not struggles with their identities.
“We were determined to not make any of the dads' individual paths their sexuality or have their sexuality be their defining trait," Gray says.
But Gray sees something very different in the passionate response from fans: an audience that has gone dismally underserved by an industry that has failed to either see it or acknowledge it, and one that is ready to show up in force when offered a full-course meal rather than just scraps.