Words: Will Stroude
19 years after The Sims first burst into our lives, sparking hours of ruthless 'Motherlode'-driven consumerism and unfortunate pool ladder incidents, the franchise is set to mark another milestone by featuring a same-sex couple on a box cover for the first time.
As part of an overhaul of 2014's The Sims 4, the physical and digital artwork for the life simulation game will include two new female 'core characters'who are in a relationship.
One, Dela Ostrow, is described as a budding fashion designer with an "inherent sense of optimism and a deep entrepreneurial spirit", while artist girlfriend Mia Hayes is "both a bit of an introvert, and a bit of a rebel, Metro Weekly reports.
Of course, The Sims has been progessively programmed ever since its launch two decades ago, allowing its young users to forge romantic relationships between Sims regardless of gender.
Creators Maxis took another step towards LGBTQ inclusion in 2016 when they updated The Sims 4 to allow Sims to adopt any body type regardless of gender.
LGBTQ rights organisation GLAAD developers for the move towards greater LGBTQ diversity and visibile on the box cover.
“The Sims franchise has been an industry leader on LGBTQ representation and this week it crossed another milestone,” GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said in a statement.
“We applaud Electronic Arts and Maxis for putting an LGBTQ couple front and center on its new, rebranded box art for The Sims 4.
“LGBTQ players have been a major part of The Sims community from the beginning, and this recognition and visibility is important and well deserved.
“This is a breakthrough moment for representation in the video game space, and we encourage others to step up and match this kind of visibility in their new releases and updates.”