Yesterday was a sad day in the gaming industry. In less than 24 hours, we got the news that Monkey Island creator Ron Gilbert was no longer going to talk about the upcoming release of Return to Monkey Island following online abuse, and God of War Ragnarök’s producer had to ask everyone to remain patient while waiting for more news on the game.
It has since transpired that some members of the gaming community have even been sending unsolicited pictures of their private parts to members of the God of War Ragnarök team. They somehow believed that this would suddenly make Sony Santa Monica give the world an update on the game’s release date… How they came to this conclusion is beyond me.
Since all of this has happened, prominent members from the industry have been making their voices heard and have called out the toxic behaviour of these so-called fans.
Following the news that Gilbert had disabled his blog yesterday, Naughty Dog co-president Neil Druckmann wrote: “Wow! Even wholesome adventure games aren’t safe from toxic ‘fans’ who know better than the original creators?!
“Ron (and team), y’all keep making what YOU believe in! It looks gorgeous! I’m there day fucking one!”
He went on to say, “Honestly… as a massive fan of a game series that changed my life, I feel lucky that we’re getting another Monkey Island from Ron Gilbert. I want his team’s vision and no one else’s.”
Meanwhile, Guybrush Threepwood actor Dominic Armato wrote: “For a community that fiercely defends its medium as art, there are an awful lot of people who do their damndest to treat it like a dumb commodity.”
Alex Mann, a development director for EA, also reflected on Gilbert’s decision to take a step back from the internet, writing: “When folks continue to wonder or ask why some game studios don’t communicate or speak about games ahead of release anymore? Or why they don’t engage with communities? This is 100 percent why; it’s not worth the personal toll [and] cost to mental health to continue to try.”
Sony Santa Monica’s Cory Barlog also offered his support to Gilbert following the news, writing: “What the hell people? Please don’t be a dick to my gamedev hero. Sorry for the bullshit, Ron. Thank you for making things that inspire me to make things. Never stop that.”
Sadly, this was not the only tweet Barlog had to share with his followers yesterday about just generally being a decent human being.
In regard to the previously mentioned NSFW pictures that were being sent to the God of War Ragnarök team, Barlog wrote: “Are you fucking kidding me with this now???
“I cannot believe I even have to say this but don’t fucking send dick pics to ANYONE on this team, or anyone in this industry for that matter. They are busting their ass to make some for you to enjoy.
“Show some fucking respect.”
Sony Santa Monica game writer Alanah Pearce went on to give her followers a “Common Sense Reminder”.
“Screaming at people over video game release dates doesn’t accomplish anything at all. Even if harassing people did cause them to give you a date (never), you also gain nothing at all by finding out before a team is ready to share.”
Gamertag Radio co-host Parris also shared his thoughts on everything that has been going on, tweeting: “Stop harassing game devs. What I’ve seen the past few days is just awful.”
“Be better than this,” he finished.