Blizzard: Removal of 'Overwatch' Butt Pose Was 'Right Call,' Not 'Caving In'

Tracer’s over the shoulder pose
An image showing Tracer's over the shoulder pose |

Blizzard recently announced that it will remove one of Tracer's victory poses in "Overwatch," which led some members of the community to believe that the company has kowtowed to a fan's whim. However, in a follow-up comment, Blizzard clarified that its decision was in no way "caving in" but was the "right call."

The butt pose issue was started by a fan who said it was out of character for Tracer and more suitable for the likes of Widowmaker. The thread generated a heated discussion on whether or not Blizzard should remove the pose. Finally, after some time, game director Jeff Kaplan responded with a definite "we'll replace the pose." Kaplan argued that they wanted "everyone" to feel strong and heroic, not uncomfortable, under-appreciated, or misrepresented. He asked for apologies and said they will continue to try to do better.

The response was received positively by those in the community who were for removing Tracer's pose. However, those who oppose the removal said Blizzard "caved in" so Kaplan decided to post a clarification. He told the community that while the butt pose feedback influenced their decision, the team was doubtful of including it in the first place.

"We understand that not everyone will agree with our decision, and that's okay. That's what these kinds of public tests are for," Kaplan said in the official "Overwatch" forum. "This wasn't pandering or caving, though. This was the right call from our perspective, and we think the game will be just as fun the next time you play it."

Blizzard's decision aligns with previous statements. In 2014, designer Chris Metzen said the team was trying to improve how they create the female characters in their game. The company isn't alone in facing similar issues as well. Capcom modified Cammy and R. Mika's moves to de-emphasize their focus on these female characters' body parts. Capcom was accused of censorship, but the company reasoned that the decision was in line with the franchise's Teen rating from the ESRB.

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