So, with the announcement that the localization of Fire Emblem Fates will not include Soleil's support, many are upset that Nintendo is kowtowing to the "SJWs" or whatever silly name people deride them as. It's definitely interesting that, even now, there seems to be a need for Nintendo to address this. So the question I have to pose is this: Is it all that bad?
Many likely still remember the initial controversy regarding Soleil's support. For those that don't: Soleil is a character that states that she's attracted to females, and to a lesser extend, males. There are only romantic supports for men. One of which involved a magic powder that made her see everyone's gender as being reversed. This caused quite a bit of fuss for some supposed implications of gay conversion. It was kinda a mess. I even posted an article about it, and shared my take on the situation. Figured that I may at least follow up on that.
With Nintendo addressing the support, and how they have opted to change it in the NA release, I can only say that I'm not that upset about this. Sure, this is censorship, I suppose, but the original support wasn't something that I'd be upset over losing. The initial support is bad. The writing is atrocious, and Soleil as a character kinda came off as flat. A big issue with censorship is that something is changed because it is seen as morally unacceptable, and that something was lost. I suppose I can see that. But I really don't see this as a big deal, at least not something that warrants a reply other than "ok, fine", and I have a couple of reasons why.
The first reason is that this is actually how localization tends to work in general. More often than not, sentences are changed, sometimes radically, when making the jump from Japanese to English. It can sometimes be hard to separate censorship with simple editing at times. Sometimes this is due to cultural differences making analogies/jokes/metaphors hard to translate over for the general audiences. Other times, this is due to the original creators actually asking for this specifically, though this is rare. And finally, there are the cases where the content is so bad that the original creator doesn't care, and gives the localization team free reign, because anything is better than what they made(Ghost Stories dub). This leads into my second point...
Soleil's support conversations were bad. Even those who defended the support never defended the quality, but that it just wasn't homophobic or that there was some sort of misunderstanding. Others were indifferent to it. There was a collective understanding that, regardless of controversy, her support with the main character was awful. And this makes me interested in as to why people are getting upset. The content that was changed really wasn't worthy of any consideration. Even had it escaped notice of the general gaming audience, I would not have been surprised if it wasn't changed regardless. If you look back at my old article, should you care to, I even agreed with such an action. Her support hurt to read.
This seems to be more an issue of principle than people feeling like they're losing out on anything. I get that, I really do, but it was very likely that this was going to get changed regardless of controversy. It's just how it got changed that upset people, and I find that interesting. As someone who did not see the same connotations as those who alleged that Fire Emblem Fates was homophobic, I still can't say that I take issue with the change. This was something that Nintendo saw that they could change without any actual issue. This doesn't effect the story or gameplay. This doesn't even effect Soleil's characterization, as much of what was covered in her support with the main character was covered in her other supports. People were upset, and Nintendo saw that the fix really didn't impact the overall game. So why not just fix it? Very little was compromised by this move, after all.
I suppose I'm quite neutral to the change, overall. It's hard to get invested in such a decision when your opinion of the original material was that it wasn't good. I appreciate those who stuck this out to the end of my rambling. This was just some quick writeup I had in my head after seeing the news break.