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LGBTQ+ flag flying high outside Rare entrance

Celebrating our LBGTQIA+ Community at Rare

by Taylor Wileman / 24th July 2023 / News

As we emerge from another Pride Month, we’re taking a look back at some of the colourful efforts made at Rare to show continued support for our LGBTQIA+ colleagues and community.

Throughout the month, we were excited to put on a range of activities for everyone, from academic lectures to colourful lunches and fundraising. We set up a JustGiving page too, which is still open and we would love it if you could donate to the cause!

We kicked off the month with a Rare Pride Community Coffee Morning, an opportunity for existing and new Rare staff to connect. We spoke about how we can celebrate Pride throughout the year and our upcoming plans for the Rare Employee Resource Group. We also discussed the struggles and experiences of being LBGTQIA+ and had a general natter on all things queer, which led to a conversation on how we can take comfort from the community. This was all complete with shiny bespoke merch to adorn our lanyards in open celebration of Pride.

Next up, we had Dr. Frazer Heritage joining us from Manchester Metropolitan University to share his research in a talk called ‘Politics, Pronouns and the Players’. This was a thought-provoking deep dive into the response of players worldwide to the evolving representation of transgender characters in popular videogames.

In partnership with our mental health programme and Spirit Ambassadors (who help people be their authentic selves and support mental and emotional wellbeing), we held a talk about mental health with a focus on the LGBTQIA+ experience and how we can better support those around us through active allyship.

Wrapping up our series of talks for the month, ‘Being Visible’ was a topic highlighted by one of Rare’s very own developers. This was a candid and emotional look at one of the team’s journey through queer struggle, which we were privileged to learn from by providing a platform for them to speak about their journey in a long-form way.

Alongside our many activities, the studio was adorned with bright colours representing the LGBTQIA+ community, complete with miniature flags for folks to fly from their desks all year long, as well as month-long fundraising for the nominated charity MindOut – a mental health service run by and for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer community.

Even though the sun was tucked behind the clouds as June ended, our team still shone bright for the final event, the Big Pride Lunch at Rare, wearing their most dazzling and colourful attire to celebrate their LGBTQIA+ colleagues. As with any memorable Rare occasion, the lunch saw good food partnered with the familiar sight of the ice-cream van.

In Pride-related activities specific to Sea of Thieves, our Security team provided an important update on the ongoing work to protect players not only from those who cheat but from exposure to abuse and hate speech. This is in line with our Pirate Code which has always championed Sea of Thieves as a place for everyone regardless of sex, gender, orientation or religion. Read the first of what we’re calling our Fair Play Updates here.

Our people and our players mean everything to us, and for Pride Month this year we thoroughly enjoyed celebrating Rare’s commitment to making games where everyone can feel welcome and appreciated. We see you, we celebrate you and we fly our flags in your honour. Happy Pride, everyone!