Real-life football players come out of closets all the time, and Football Manager 2018 will aim to simulate that turning point in their lives and careers more accurately than ever - as long as all those simulated players have no link to some real-life counterpart.
Don't worry, Football Manager 2018 wont go around outing any of your favourite football players, but what it will be doing is generating its own players ready to burst out of the first closet they find. Football Manager 2018 will then mechanically contextualise a player's deep love of all things manly by slightly increasing in-game revenue based on positive reactions from the LGBTQ++ community.
This is totally not what would happen in reality of course, but Sports Interactive are obviously bending the authenticity of their simulation for the purpose of getting a message across.
When it comes to football, homosexuality is quite heavily stigmatised and can even mean the end of a career depending on outing circumstances.
Since there is nothing gay about grown muscular sweating men pushing each other to the limits of their physical endurance, a lot of fans of the sport and potentially of previous Football Manager games may take the inclusion of these mechanics as a jab at them personally. This could lead to fewer sales.
"We are not going to be able to change the mind of someone who is homophobic, we don't have that power, and if someone has that issue and decides not to buy the game for that reason then to be honest I feel really sorry for them," is all that Football Manager director Miles Jacobson had to say about the matter to .
It's more than a little strange to see a game such as Football Manager clumsily and cautiously try and walk the thin line between mechanics, message and PR stunt. The punchline is due to arrive on 10 November 2017, on PCs of various OS denominations, as well as tablets and phones.
Yep, primarily a PC release, so expect someone to have a fix ready to mod the gay out of Football Manager 2018 on launch day.