Tracer’s Over The Shoulder Pose Removed by Blizzard
Recent controversy involving Tracer, a well-known figure and playable character from Overwatch, have stuck the community and the developer.
While some agree that sexism don’t go well with video games, others will debate and say otherwise. “Sexy” figures are known to help a game sell; their incorporation in advertisements is a strong proof supporting that. However, not all companies share the same marketing schemes; some of them like to keep it clean and family friendly.
That being said, Blizzard is a company that promotes its games with unparalleled respect. Unfortunately, a recent pose from Overwatch character Tracer, suggested otherwise and compromised their position on the issue – fans were not pleased and they took action quickly. Here is an extract of one of the posts that was made:
WHAT? What about this pose has anything to do with the character you’re building in tracer? It’s not fun, it’s not silly, it has nothing to do with being a fast elite killer. It just reduces tracer to another bland female sex symbol.
We aren’t looking at a widowmaker pose here, this isn’t a character who is in part defined by flaunting her sexuality. This pose says to the player base, oh we’ve got all these cool diverse characters, but at any moment we are willing to reduce them to sex symbols to help boost our investment game.
Getting art into a triple A game isn’t a small task, it has to go through an implementer, a team lead, an art director, and a creative director. This is a team effort. And I believe the team is responsible for upholding the great example Overwatch can set to the rest of the industry for creating strong female characters.
I have a young daughter that everyday when I wake up wants to watch the recall trailer again. She knows who tracer is, and as she grows up, she can grow up alongside these characters.
What I’m asking is that as you continue to add to the Overwatch cast and investment elements, you double down on your commitment to create strong female characters. You’ve been doing a good job so far, but shipping with a tracer pose like this undermines so much of the good you’ve already done.
After a few days of posts, Blizzard decided to take action. In a post issued by Overwatch Game Director Jeff Kaplan, the representative gave in the demands and announced the official change.
We’ll replace the pose. We want *everyone* to feel strong and heroic in our community. The last thing we want to do is make someone feel uncomfortable, under-appreciated or misrepresented.
Apologies and we’ll continue to try to do better.
Do you feel that Blizzard did the right thing? Feel free to share your opinion in the comment section.