Xbox Live is challenging the gender binary with these new clothing options for avatars
Xbox Live is making a major change to their Avatar system in their next update: Avatars will no longer be forced to conform to the gender binary.
Previously, Xbox Live users were required to pick a gender for their avatars. Male avatars came with “boy” clothes, and female avatars came with “girl” clothes.
Clothing will now be gender neutral, the company revealed, so players of any gender identity can pick clothing and styles that suit them.
According to designer Kathryn Storm, any avatar will be able to sport any available clothing or hairstyle, regardless of selected gender.
“Our new Avatars are built with inclusivity absolutely in mind, with more options and flexibility," explained Storm during a Xbox Daily Live-stream at E3, a gaming conference. "“We want people to feel like we have endless options to really reflect who they are.
Xbox’s update comes a year after The Sims ditched gender-specific clothing and styles as well, indicating a growing trend of virtual inclusivity for players.
"We don't want to put you in a box. There's no more checkboxes," said Bryan Saftler, a project manager at Xbox. “No matter what you think you look like, this whole avatar system is designed so that you can represent your best self on Xbox Live.
Thanks, Xbox, for taking steps to better represent your players.