Latest posts by Jake Wilson (see all)
- Enderal – Skyrim Mod – Review - September 12, 2016
- Rise of the Tomb Raider – Review - August 23, 2016
- Simone Bernacchia – Amiga Homebrew Composer Interview - August 22, 2016
Overwatch has been the target of another round of criticism this week. This time, rather than accusations of sexism (or misogyny as some people incorrectly label it) Blizzard has been accused of “cultural appropriation.” Though some of the other Overwatch Skins have been labelled offensive too, the specific skin under scrutiny this time is the Devi skin for the character Symmetra.
Speaking out is Hindu Statesman Rajan Zed who has taken part in various campaigns for the censorship of media. Most famous of which was his campaign against the satirical film The Love Guru. Rajan Zed who is president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, has asked Blizzard to remove the skin because it “trivialises religion.”
“reimagining Hindu scriptures, symbols, concepts and deities for commercial or other agenda is not okay as it creates confusion. Controlling and manipulating Devi with a joystick/ button/keyboard/mouse is denigration. Devi is meant to be worshipped in temples and home shrines and not to be reduced to just a ‘character’ in a video game to be used in combat in the virtual battleground.”
Perhaps Rajan Zed is the one who’s confused though, as the players using this skin are not actually playing as a Devi. (meaning Hindu goddess) They are playing as the character Symmetra who is wearing an outfit. So his claim that this is denigration of a Hindu deity is nonsense.
“Video game makers should be more sensitive while handling faith-related subjects, as these games leave a lasting impact on the minds of highly impressionable children, teens and other young people,”
Does anyone else see the irony in his statements? Causing confusion & leaving a lasting impact on the minds of impressionable children. Well that sounds just like religion. As adults we have the right to believe in whatever we choose, but where children are concerned it is religion that has to answer for the “confusion” of children all around the world. But that’s a topic for a more politically motivated website.
While Rajan Zed believes that a character using violence in a video game & an Overwatch Skin inspired by Hindu Devi, is offensive. He needs to realise that there are people who find religion offensive, and harmful. The difference is, I wouldn’t condone anyone for calling a ban on religion or the removal of religious themes from a piece of media and I wouldn’t condemn parents for letting their kids watch it if they are adhering to the rating system of the country in question. Once again, that is calling for the elimination of free speech and freedom of artistic expression.