As has become tradition, Xbox is celebrating Pride Month with a number of initiatives meant to drive awareness, support, and to highlight the LGBTQIA+ members in and outside of the Xbox community. Today’s Xbox Wire post, written by Kate Rayner (VP, Technical Director at The Coalition), describes the bevy of ways the platform-holder is uplifting and celebrating the LGBTQIA+ communities.
Most importantly, Rayner describes the ways in which gamers can support the LGBTQIA+ communities, and the number of direct means to do so directly through Microsoft Rewards (in the United States and the United Kingdom). Specifically, Mermaids, OutRight Action International, and National Center for Transgender Equality, will all be featured on the console app throughout June. Microsoft is also donating $170,000 to LGBTQIA+ nonprofits and, per Rayner, “Together with our employees, Microsoft has donated over $8 million to organizations that support LGBTQIA+ communities in the last year alone”.
Additionally, the Xbox Gear Shop and Design Lab are celebrating Pride by offering a number of limited-edition items and apparel. At the forefront is the new Pride top case being offered in the Xbox Design Lab starting June 9th for players to make their own unique controller to celebrate Pride, complete with all the other customization options for previous Design Lab makes (rubberized grips, metallic triggers, etc.). The controller offering is a direct response to last year’s extremely popular but unavailable-to-consumers Pride celebration controller, which Microsoft acknowledged; the company has also built an interactive experience to highlight the LGBTQIA+ gamers, developers, creators, and Microsoft employees represented by the effort.
Gamers will also be able to partake in the celebration directly on their Xbox consoles. Dontnod’s award-winning Tell Me Why will be made free for the entire month of June. Forza Horizon 4 and 5, as well as Forza Motorsport 7 will be featuring a rainbow livery for the 2009 Pagani Zonda, which will be gifted to all players (more details to come). Also, 343 Industries will be giving all players that log in during the month of June the “Unity” nameplate and emblem.
For Xbox, the celebration doesn’t end there: a curated list of games about and made by members of the LGBTQIA+ communities, spotlights on LGBTQIA+ Xbox Ambassadors, roundtables, and more can be found in the Xbox Wire post here.