Just when you thought Blizzard had learned their lesson from the Overwatch Tracer pose fiasco they continue to show how tone deaf they are. The original Tracer complaint post (that included Jeff Kaplan’s replies) that started this incident and the rebuttal post made by a 30 year old mother and Blizzard super fan named Ginny Higerd have both been deleted. Fearing that this kind of whitewashing might happen, I saved the text of Ginny’s post and made it available here for posterity:
My name is Ginny Higerd. I’m 30 years old, and a mother of an 8 year old. I’ve been playing Blizzard Entertainment games since The Lost Vikings on SNES. I’ve been a gamer since 1993. I’ve been a WoW player since 2005.
I’m not attractive. I’m not skinny. I got my jelly rolls that I have to deal with. I’ve been teased about my appearance since elementary school. As I got older, I tried very hard not to let it get to me.
Today, however, I’m upset. I’m disappointed.
Today, I feel like my voice no longer matters to Blizzard. Today, I feel like I was told that I have to give up confident and sexy poses to cater to a small minority, very annoying voice in the gaming industry.
I’m quite frankly sick of it.
I love being a sexy night elf character. I love being Tracer. I love being Nova. I LOVE these strong women that can be confident in their abilities and their appearance, because in the real world, I’m none of those things. These games were an escape for me. I channel myself into these characters, because I would give anything to be just like them.
Blizzard, why am I not allowed to be strong and sexy? Why am I not allowed to love these characters as they already are? Why are you alienating not just me, but many other women that love these female characters as they are for a single voice?
I want Tracer to stay how she is. I want her to be strong, confident, and sexy. Please, PLEASE, stop trying to make this game too PC. Stop trying to make women like me out to be sensitive babies that can’t handle beautiful women. Stop trying to cater to “families” when this game isn’t meant to be played by younger children.
Stop snuffing out my voice!
Edit: Since I have to prove myself constantly: https://twitter.com/mahoumelonball/status/714561794363097088
Do I post on KiA? Yes, because I am a firm believer that video games are an art, and need to stop pandering to the PC crowd that do not actually play any of these games. My opinions are my opinions, and they should not be invalidated simply because of subreddits I browse.
I’m a grown adult that can make my own decisions, and simply because I disagree with the PC police does not mean I’m trolling.
Edit 2: Other characters in the game use the exact same pose. Why aren’t people calling for them to be removed because they’re “sexist”/boring/whatever excuse? https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Ceq0ec7WsAMUK-x.jpg
Edit 3: I’m calling you out, Jeff. If that’s your excuse for removing it, then every character that does the same pose must also be removed. Fair is fair, right?http://us.battle.net/forums/en/overwatch/topic/20743015583?page=11#post-210
Ginny Higerd is a true hero. She rightly called out Blizzard for their pandering. She showed courage and bravery for speaking out and countering the false narrative of female oppression in video games concocted by social justice warriors and attention seekers like Anita Sarkeesian and others.
According to Blizzard’s mission statement every voice matters. If every voice does indeed matter, then why were both of these threads deleted?
There’s another, indirect side to this issue that I think deserves to be looked at: Activision-Blizzard has increasingly been courting Hollywood in its endeavors to expand their operations, most notably during the creation of their most recent sequels and expansions (StarCraft II, Diablo III and WoW: Mists of Pandaria onwards).
Here’s a 2014 interview with Blizzard’s audio team regarding their “big three” franchises (StarCraft, WarCraft and Diablo). Notice that they namedrop the Screen Actors Guild a couple of times with reference to voice acting:
In his KillScreen interview, sound director Joseph Lawrence notes the following on Diablo III’s audio design:
“I’m a little biased because I actually did it, but the cackles of the skeletons when they laugh uncontrollably. I did them very early on when I was trying to figure out what those guys sounded like. You actually have to sit there and wait for a while, but then they just burst into this maniacal laughter.
That was before we were union, so all of that got grandfathered in. Now we wouldn’t be able to do such stuff unless I got a SAG (Screen Actors Guild) card, but back in the old days we were able to do that.”
Also, just last year Activision Blizzard opened up their own TV and film studio:
Of note is that Hollywood is very much a leftist progressive propaganda machine now. I wouldn’t be surprised if Activision-Blizzard were being pressured to skew their operations via string-pulling.