Favorite Non-Binary ROs or MCs?

Perry Cole from Blackstone Academy is always my main choice as LI, they’re my first NB locked LI. Also Syd from Body Count, they’re fun.

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One of my personal favorite ROs (just, overall) is Min from Heroes of Myth, who is nonbinary! You can play a nonbinary MC in that game as well.

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I normally only pick male ROs in games, so for me to pick a NB one is pretty rare. I guess it can count as a suggestion for what I think is a great NB character though, considering I would have picked a male one, normally!

So, my best pick, though the game is a WIP, is Sailor, from Checkmate in Three Moves. And yeah, they are locked NB!

I know the MC of the first Balance of Superpower is NB locked, and in the sequel currently in the making, you can either play as the same MC, or a new one, and have the one from the first game as rival. I can’t judge the quality of the story though, since I only play the second game, considering I only make male MCs in text based IF (I feel unconfortable with high-customization and / or second person narrative with MCs that are not male). Now, I like the second game, so yeah, I guess the first one is fun too!
Also, the MC you didn’t pick for the second game is a RO, so that makes the MC of the first game a NB locked RO, if you pick the new MC.

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There is a non-binary romantic option in “Heart of the House” by Nissa Campbell who I found compelling. Ordinarily, I don’t explore those options, but I did an additional playthrough specifically for this.

EDIT: I just realized that @sviyagin wrote exactly this! So, take my post as a +1.

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Your rec means a lot @dwsnee! (are there any in Shire? it’s been a while since I’ve played)

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One of my fav ro’s of all time, who happens to be NB is Pan in DIASPORA Diaspora (WIP) - Updated 16 April 2021

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Panegyris Vetranio from Diaspora is one of my absolute favorite characters of all time.

Charon from Fields of Asphodel is at the top of my favorite characters list too.

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Not precisely. In my WiP, the MC can be NB, but the ROs are all gender-swappable (male/female) and player-sexual. There is a fairly prominent NB general, and one of the ROs can be a male sharing a body with his dead wife’s spirit. I guess this all a very long way of saying, “no,” which makes me feel badly. I’m not finished, so maybe I should write one in.

Glad to see you out and about and making discoveries! Wishing you well from my corner of the world/web/grand illusion. Cheers! :beers:

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I either go for male or NB ros, for published cog games I really like the NB ro in Mask of the Plague doctor. There’s one in Heart of the House and one in Blood Money who have already been mentioned.

The northern passage wip has my favourite NB RO Clementine. And there is also a second RO who is gender selectable (NB inclusive). Also if you select Leah to be male then he is trans…dont know if hes still a trans character if you choose the female option.

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If you did, I would throw confetti! P. S. Yester is on the list of new names I’m considering for myself!

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One of my all-time favourite ROs is the Evertree saga’s Captain Hayden Winter, who seems to have decided that ‘gender is boring and I don’t need it’. Winter is a changeling, and will occasionally take on a more masculine or feminine appearance for characters who prefer that, but defaults to androgynous and doesn’t use pronouns at all (instead the writer only uses epithets and other tricks to refer to the captain, like I’m trying to demonstrate here).

I’d also second the endorsements for Min, Pan, and Charon.

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Thank you all so much for all the recommendations so far!

I can easily check for myself when I get the chance to try these, but does anyone know offhand if these games all allow for nb mcs and if any have customizable pronouns/a range of pronouns?

I don’t know off the top of my head for most of these, but 180 Files and Blackstone Academy do at least. As does Battlemage, although I don’t think there were any NB NPCs (including ROs) in that one. Creatures Such As We also allows for gender and pronoun customization, but without NB NPCs, and without ever referring to the MC in third person.

Anecdotally, you’re more likely to find customizable pronouns in WIPs and more recent games, as well as more NB NPCs, if you’re ever browsing on your own and want a rough guideline for your hunting.

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Thank you so much!

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i second the Heart of the House and Heroes of Myth recs!!

not a COG/HOS game, but on itch.io, the game: A Tale of Crowns, has a lot of customization for the mc, pronouns and gender included. in general, its approach to gender and pronouns is amazing!! while none of the ROs are nonbinary (they’re player selectable and there is a lot of care and varriation taken to the differences) there are quite a few nonbinary characters in the story and they are all lovely. (it’s also just, wonderfully written and one of the best fleshed out romances in interactive fiction that i’ve read, thus far, espcially with care to queerness and gender).

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I’m currently madly in love with Hayden Winter (Sordwin / Lux) and I usually only romance characters that are strictly male, but when I recently replayed Sordwin I decided to try their route and I’ve quickly become obsessed with them to the point that I don’t even differentiate anymore between myself and my MC like I usually do. The self-insert was strong this time. I saw another user describe how they turned yandere for Hayden, and I can absolutely relate. x_+

tw: abusive relationships / behavior, oversharing

I have known people like them in real life, we all probably have, highly narcissistic, charismatic and downright cruel, and I gotta say, I have never encountered an IF RO that triggered me the way Winter did at first, to the point that I found myself behaving around them in the exact way I had in a real abusive relationship I’d been in a long time ago. For instance, holding back my true thoughts and feelings and tiptoeing around that person in order not to make them upset or angry at me.
Hayden scares me in a way no other villain / antagonist in a choice game has so far, because their abusive nature is so damn realistic and hits so close to home - I don’t fear their cutlass, I’m afraid of their volatile mood swings. It’s not difficult to detach yourself from fictional violence if it’s magical, cartoonish, over the top or simply something you’ve never experienced in real life, but the entire dynamic between Winter and your MC is dysfunctional and unhealthy (if you fall for them) in a way many have actually experienced. And I also think that speaks for @ThomB 's skills as a writer. It’s so much easier to describe the physical carnage and aftermath of a battle of orcs vs. mages than it is to explore the subtle nuances of a complicated relationship like this.
I’m an old fart now and I’ve long since realized that people like Hayden are only fun in fiction and absolutely not in real life, which is also the explanation for why I’m able to enjoy romancing them, with “romancing” being a euphemism for getting stepped on, of course. I even enjoy playing very submissive MCs and have learned to embrace this part of me that still feels drawn to characters like this. It’s easier to accept it and explore it in a safe environment like a piece of IF, than to repress it or feel guilty about it - as long as there’s a chance to opt-out at any given time (which unfortunately not all choice games provide) if things get too uncomfortable.

Another thing I love about Hayden is how them being nonbinary / genderfluid is actually canonically explained with them being a changeling. It gives this aspect of them a depth and dimension many nonbinary characters lack. I often have a feeling when I encounter nonbinary ROs that they’re an afterthought or only there for the sake of filling some quota, because the (binary & cis) author was scared to death of offending or writing about something they can’t relate to or know nothing about from personal experience. That’s quite a shame, because “nonbinary” is such a giant umbrella term and being nonbinary comes in so many interesting flavors and ways to express it; it’s very refreshing to have a nonbinary character that is more than just a vaguely described androgynous person, and it’s even more refreshing to have the characters in the story actually acknowledge the fact that they’re outside the binary (and even confusing to some).

TL;DR: Hayden Winter is hot af. :melting_face:

Du bist das Schiff, ich der Kapitän
You are the ship, I’m the captain
Wohin soll denn die Reise geh’n?
Where should this journey go?
Ich seh im Spiegel dein Gesicht
I see your face in the mirror
Du liebst mich, denn ich lieb’ dich nicht
You love me, because I don’t love you

Rammstein - “Ich tu’ dir weh”

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I liked Breeze from Versus. Actually one of my favorite ROs.

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Vethna from The Exile! And if I may mention one for visual novels, August from When the Night Comes. :heart_eyes:

Edit: It’s not only because @spytim liked my post but I really love Designated Six from The Operative too, sorry I forgot them ouch :smiling_face_with_tear: :smiling_face_with_tear: :smiling_face_with_tear:

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I’m very fond of Lucia from Mask of the Plague Doctor, Celestino from Siege of Treboulain, Andrea from The Magician’s Workshop, Dominique and Sam from Relics of the Lost Age / The Crusader’s Tomb (the latter isn’t a RO, but a wonderful friend), as well as Loren from Heart of the House !

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Definitely the northern passage ROs— clementine and Lea (who you can pick to be NB) are my favorites!

I saw someone mention the visual novel When the Night Comes— August is also one of my favorites.

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