By Tat Bellamy – Walker, originally published in TransLash Zine: Pride Month Edition
Trans, non-binary, intersex, and two-spirit people are working to disrupt anti-LGBTQIA rhetoric in gaming circles. TransLash is spotlighting some of these TGNC gamers and advocates who vow to make the gaming community safe and inclusive for people of underrepresented genders.
Ricki Sophie Ortiz
Ricki Sophie Ortiz (She/Her) is a transgender woman and champion pro-fighting player for Evil Geniuses’ esports team. Ortiz is known within the gaming community for her expert combat skills in “Marvel vs. Capcom” and the “Street Fighter” series. Streamers can find her on Twitch at HelloKittyRicki.
SonicFox (They/Them) is a Black, queer, and non-binary pro-fighting game player for Evil Geniuses. They have long identified as a furry, and in 2019, they came out as non-binary. SonicFox uses their platform to raise awareness of issues in the LGBTQ community. Last year, they won a “Mortal Kombat” tournament while wearing a blue fursuit head and wrapped in a trans flag. They can be found on Twitch at SonicFox.
Veronica Ripley (She/Her), also known by the username Nikatine, is a Latinx transgender woman and founder of Team Trans Gaming, a platform providing visibility to trans video gamers. She has recently shown her gaming expertise through playing “Red Dead Redemption 2” and “Resident Evil Village.” Ripley is constantly exploring new games on Twitch at Nikatine.
Winnie (She/They) is a non-binary, ace-identified, disabled, and Vietnamese gamer. Additionally, she is a member of Rainbow Arcade, a tight-knit LGBTQ gaming space. When they are not fundraising for queer and social justice issues, users can find them overthrowing vegetable governments in “Turnip Boy Commits Tax Evasion” on Twitch at Wxnnie.
MermaidRoyal (They/She) is a queer Latinx content creator and video gamer. They are known for diving into everything from story-based games to “Dungeons and Dragons” and more. LGBTQ individuals seeking to join the Mermaid squad can catch them on Twitch at MermaidRoyal.
Letsplaygaymes (She/They) is a disabled, agender, non-binary gamer and pro at playing “Kingdom Hearts.” What’s more, on Twitch, you can catch them doing yoga while pursuing farm life in the role-playing game “Stardew Valley.”
Ctrlaltquin is a trans, non-binary video gamer and “Star Wars” geek that sprinkles comedy into their live streams. You can find them playing “Among Us” and other games on Twitch at Ctrlaltquin.
TGNC Inclusive Gaming Communities & Advocacy Organizations
- I Need Diverse Games is a Chicago-based non-profit spearheaded by journalist Tanya DePass. DePass is known virtually as cypheroftyr and provides a safe online space for gamers of color and individuals of marginalized identities. Gamers not only can promote their work but can discuss representation and diversity in the video gaming industry. The non-profit is known for bringing dozens of people to the Game Developers Conference, a major industry networking event.
- Qweerty Gamers is a non-profit seeking to make LGBTQ gamers more visible and welcomed across the world. For years, the platform has brought developers and LGBTQ gamers together for conversations on queer representation. Additionally, the group provides consultations, programs, and workshops to advance the careers of LGBTQ gamers.
- Rainbow Arcade is a queer gaming space on Twitch to help streamers and content creators talk about everything from fighting anti-LGBTQ bias in the video gaming industry to defeating the latest round in a new indie game. The group seeks to be a positive force within gaming circles and is committed to helping LGBTQ individuals have a seat at the table.
- /TransGamers: a trans & non-binary gamers Reddit group with over 30K members.
- Transmission Gaming is one of the oldest trans & non-binary Discord communities around.
- And if you haven’t already, check out Team TransLash’s guide to Non-Binary Awareness Week (and non-binary resources).
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TransLash Zine is an independent publication by TransLash Media that supports our mission of telling trans stories to save trans lives. We feature uncensored art, writing, and photography by trans/non-binary/intersex/two-spirit/gender non-conforming people, and we pay contributors. Our first two issues were developed and produced by POC Zine Project, and POC Zine Project continues to support our content and partnerships strategy. Our third issue, a Pride Month Edition partnership with Transgender Law Center, dropped June 6, 2021. Print editions of 1-3 coming soon. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive alerts. Want your writing and art featured in the next issue of our zine? Submit here.
Tat Bellamy – Walker is the digital editor/reporter at Gay City News, the only LGBTQ newspaper in New York City. Last year, he was NHPR’s Barbara and Richard Couch Fellow. His work has appeared in Business Insider, on CNN, and The Daily Beast. He’s an alum of the Craig Newmark School of Journalism, where he specialized in health and science reporting.