An upcoming video game that features a prominent gay character has been banned in India.
The role-playing game Dragon Age: Inquisition – produced by Bioware – will feature a gay main character, Dorian.
In a series first, players can choose to have a romantic and sexual relationship with him only if they play as another male character.
However, publisher Electronic Arts has today cancelled all pre-orders for the game from India and surrounding regions.
A statement said: “In order to avoid a breach of local content laws, EA has withdrawn Dragon Age: Inquisition from sale in India and the game is no longer available for pre-order.
“All affected purchases for Dragon Age: Inquisition will be refunded. This applies regardless of payment method or date of purchase.
“Customers who pre-ordered the game will be contacted directly and will be fully refunded.”
Distributor Milestone Interactive told NDTV that the game was pulled over its gay scenes.
The site says: “Rather than face the wrath of some of India’s more prudish segments of society, EA have pre-emptively decided to make the game unavailable in India, without confirming or commenting on which local laws were being breached.”
EA’s regional marketing director Simon Smith-Wright said: “The current action we’ve taken only affects Dragon Age Inquisition.”
The game was not expected to perform well in the Indian market – with RPG titles rarely shifting more than a couple thousand units in the country.
Developer David Gaider said previously: “Dorian is gay—he is, in fact, the first fully gay character I’ve had the opportunity to write.
“I suppose this aspect of Dorian will make him controversial in some corners, but I was glad to include it.
“It made writing Dorian a very personal experience for me, and I’m hopeful that will make him seem like a fully realized character to fans in the end.”