Mike Hoye Hacks Zelda Video Game To Change Boy Hero To Girl For His Daughter

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MIKE HOYE
Mike Hoye hacked the popular video game Zelda in order to make his daughter, Maya, the hero of the story. | Mike Hoye

One man wanted his daughter to know she's just as heroic as the boys. So he hacked into her favorite video game and changed its main character from male to female.

Mike Hoye and his 3-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Maya, regularly play Zelda: Windwaker together, Yahoo! Shine reported. Players of the game can opt to change the name of the main character from Link to something else, but for Hoye, that wasn't enough.

"All of the dialog [sic] insists that Link is a boy, and there's apparently nothing to be done about it," Hoye wrote. "It's annoying and awkward, to put it mildly, having to do gender-translation on the fly when Maya asks me to read what it says on the screen."

Hoye, who is self-employed but previously created corporate deploy systems for Mozilla products, used his programming knowledge to reverse all the pronouns in the game, according to the Daily Dot. He chipped away at the project over a couple of weeks, then published the results for anyone to mimic.

In his new and improved game, as the story text scrolls, "he" reads "she," "my lad" appears as "milady" and "boy" as "girl."

Some gamers are upset over the sex change applied to a classic video game. Hoye, however, finds the overall lack of strong female characters in games problematic.

"That women get treated terribly by every part of the gaming industry — as protagonists, in games' storylines, in gamer culture in general — is beyond debate, and completely inexcusable," Hoye said.

On the Daily Dot, Hoye answered questions about gender tensions, the challenge of finding suitable video games for kids, and more. A few commenters accused Hoye of reinforcing a gender divide.

But the majority approved, if for nothing else than Hoye's attempt to be a good parent.

"I'm not having my daughter growing up thinking girls don't get to be the hero," Hoye said.

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