Game Bakers have announced that Haven, their romantic space adventure, has just received their Haven Couples update, which allows for same sex couples in the game. The game features Yu and Kay, a couple of lovers that are fighting to stay together in a world that wants to tear them apart. With the update, you can now play as three variations of the couple: "the existing Yu and Kay (woman and man), as two women (Yu and an alternate version of Kay) or as two men (Kay and an alternate version of Yu)."
As explained by Emeric Thoa, Creative Director:
“Haven is about the freedom to love whomever you want. From the very early days of conception, we had created several couples for the game, with a diverse range of relationships. But the constraints of our indie team production made us focus on Yu and Kay only. After the game launch, we wanted to go back and work on this update. We hope that many players will feel better represented in the game.”
The two new variations of the characters have received the same love and care that the original couple did. The alternates share a similar look with the original Yu and Kay, and there's also two new actors brought in for the new models, the in-game art, and 80,000 lines of dialog.
What's interesting about the Haven Couples update is that TechRaptor interviewed Thoa back in 2019, who had this to say about having same-gender couples in Haven:
"And I expected another reaction that is much more important to me, which is people are asking, 'Can we choose a gender? Can we be a gay couple, two men, two women?'" Mr. Thoa added. "And this is something that I thought about for a long time, but I couldn't find a way to make it available for players without [completely changing] the game experience."
"The game experience is, we tell the story of two characters that are very, very finely-detailed, very handcrafted, and you can't [clicks tongue] swap the gender, it doesn't work," he continued." It doesn't fit. It's not working. [We would probably have to increase the scope of the game by 3 times.] One for the hetero couple, one [each for the male homosexual couple and the female homosexual couple]. So, we didn't do that."
A lot can change in three years, and it's interesting see how drastic of a change Thoa and subsequently Haven went through. From categorically saying that same-sex couples couldn't be in Haven without completely changing the game experience to adding the alternate couples in, it looks as though there's been a lot of thinking and debates on the topic between then and now.
Haven is 40% off for the time being, so if you're now is a great time to pick up Game Bakers' romantic space adventure if that's your thing.
Interested in seeing the alternate couples? Check out the Haven Couples update trailer below:
The Haven Couples update is available on PC (Steam, Epic Games Store and GOG.com), PlayStation 4 and 5, Xbox One and Series X|S, and Nintendo Switch. For more information, stay tuned to TechRaptor.