Some gamers describe themselves as “geeks” because their love of video games is much greater than that of their casual-gaming peers. But gamer culture hasn’t always been supportive of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) gamers, who call themselves “gaymers.”

Vermont native Matt Conn said that, as a gay gamer, he was “an alien even to the aliens,” because he felt outcast from both the LGBTI and the gamer communities. Using the Kickstarter crowdfunding site, he created GaymerX, an annual convention for LGBTI gamers.

GaymerX has held conventions since 2012. The next one will be in San Jose, California, December 11–13. For LGBTI gamers and developers, it provides an opportunity to see that there are thousands more people like themselves who share their passion.

As one participant said, “In connecting with others who shared my interests, I began to see that there were guys just like me. Being a gaymer made me realize I was not alone.”