Gaming giant Nintendo made a shocking announcement last week that one of its most beloved characters doesn't identify along the gender binary.
Toad, Mario's buddy in classic games like "Super Mario Bros. 2," has long been assumed to be male but was in fact intended to be genderless. During an interview discussing "Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker," a new game from Nintendo, producer Koichi Hayashida revealed some surprising new info about Toad, Toadette and the gender binary.
“This is maybe a little bit of a strange story, but we never really went out of our way to decide on the sex of these characters, even though they have somewhat gendered appearances,” Hayashida reportedly stated. “But I think what I can say is that Toadette and Toad are not siblings -- perhaps it would be more accurate to say they are adventure pals. And that’s certainly true here [in Captain Toad].”
Hayashida also revealed that Toad is neither a toad or a mushroom.
This isn't the first time a beloved video game character has turned out to be unexpectedly queer. The original manual for "Super Mario Bros. 2" claimed that the character Birdo is, in fact, a boy who believes that he is a girl and would rather be referred to as "Birdetta." The later installments of "Super Mario Bros." however, did not include this background about Birdo's character.
More and more video game makers are including LGBT characters in their games. Earlier this year a new game titled "My Ex-Boyfriend, The Space Tyrant," which features a space explorer who discovers his ex-boyfriend is one of the universe's biggest bad guys, was released by Up Multimedia.