"Escape from Tarkov" devs under fire for refusal to add playable women.

How dare an indie studio not do what we want!

It’s hard to believe folks, but an outlet for gaming news is demonizing a studio for something that isn’t that big of a deal. Shocking news I know, this doesn’t happen often. I didn’t think we’d ever see a news outlet give an overly opinionated take on what a game studio does and act like it’s an attack on an entire community. Who would have?

Okay jokes (sort of) aside for now, let me explain the situation. If you haven’t heard of Battlestate Games, they are the developers of the more recent early-access PC hit “Escape from Tarkov“. A sort of RUST-like expeditionary game where you are constantly going into areas to kill and loot gear from A.I. enemies and other players. Fun game, would definitely recommend if you are looking for a good time sink. But Battlestate Games has come under fire from some gaming news outlets and social media users over their explanation for why they don’t have female characters in their game (which is an early access in beta by the way).

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The Twitter account for Battlestate Games stated recently that female playable characters will not be added to the game due to lore reasons and the amount of work it would take to animate them into the game. Now let me make something clear here, I don’t agree with Battlestate Games’ decision to not add playable female characters to the game. If it were a matter of “not right now” I wouldn’t have as much issue but to not add them at all is a bad choice. That aside though, while I disagree with their decision it’s still their choice at the end of the day.

But while I do dislike their decision to not add playable female characters, I disagree with the attacks on the studio much more. People making every claim possible about sexism, misogyny, etc. Now people on Twitter, who cares about them? People are entitled to their personal opinions and even if you disagree with them they still are allowed to have it. My problem is with gaming journalists using their outlet to bully an indie studio because of their dislike over something that has virtually zero impact on the quality of the game. Here’s a crazy idea: Don’t like it? Don’t play it.

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This isn’t even the first time that gaming news outlets have attacked an indie studio for a developers opinions. Another example being Warhorse Studios, developers of “Kingdom Come: Deliverance”. The game came under fire from outlets for its commitment to historical accuracy instead of fantasy, and for the lead developers more conservative politics. Claims by people that the game developers were racist for not including darker skinned characters, in a game set in medieval Europe, were spread about online. It was ridiculous then, and it’s ridiculous now.

But let’s say they’re right for a moment, and Battlestate is actually doing this because they all dislike the notion of women in war. Why would we assume this? Probably because the studio is Russian. Now I don’t know about you, but me personally, I don’t think that Russians have very Western Progressive values. Crazy to think I know. At the end of the day, this is just another case of keyboard warriors and milquetoast game journalists bashing an indie dev for wrong-think because they decided not to add something to their game that at most would only serve a cosmetic effect. And while I may agree it’s a dumb thing to do, if it really bothers you that much just don’t buy the game. Simple.

But I’d love to get your opinions on this situation. Do you also agree the decision to never add playable females is dumb? Do you think Battlestate has the right to do with their game what they want? Do you think that Russia is progressive? Let us know in the comments.