Ai: The Somnium Files – Nirvana Initiative is out now, but back in 2019, the original game launched with a scene featuring Mizuki, a young girl in the player’s care, advocating for the queer community. She talks about how the community is “rich in sensibility, has excellent taste, and is full of talented, artistic people,” as well as talks about how fighting for their rights and choosing to live their lives going against societal expectation is proof they have a “strong backbone.” Because of all this, Mizuki says she respects queer people, and it’s all very sweet. If you’ve never seen the monologue yourself, you can check it out right here:
AI: The Somium Files is Very Good pic.twitter.com/TWZ5kfH8gD
— cullen (@DrCullenPHD) September 17, 2019
As is predictable when anyone advocates for queer people in video games, there was blowback from the usual places on the internet, with some saying Ai: The Somnium Files was “pushing an agenda” or some such nonsense. Some detractors who think Japan is a bastion of frozen conservative ideology even claimed English localization added Mizuki’s advocacy, but that was quickly debunked.
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Spoilers for Ai: The Somnium Files – Nirvana Initiative follow
All that being said, it seems Spike Chunsoft was not content to let this expression of both Mizuki’s character and the game’s feelings on queer people fade into the background, as Ai: The Somnium Files – Nirvana Initiative features a scene where Mizuki once again throws her support behind queer people, disabled people, those persecuted for their race or religion, and gets less than friendly toward those who have prejudice against them.
In a late-game scene, Mizuki is once again sitting at the same bar with Mama, the character who prompted the conversation about queer people in the first game. She talks about how humanity is weak, and had to band together to overcome that weakness. She then talks about how, if she had the ability of flight, she’d give hugs to people in those communities…then do something less kind to people who have a problem with them.
I've cut around any possible spoiler, but since this is late game I'll still tag with #ainispoilers
— cullen (@DrCullenPHD) June 26, 2022
Ai: The Somnium Files – Nirvana Initiative is available now on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Switch.