This is an editorial piece. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of, and should not be attributed to, Niche Gamer as an organization.
Almost exactly a year ago a laughably bad article appeared on Medium in which an identity politicking self described “disabled trans woman” wrote a piece criticizing the game Night in the Woods for being “Trumpian propaganda in disguise.” As I myself pointed out a year ago, it was a cringe-inducing article in which one of the complaints was quite literally aimed at the fact no one in the game’s town treated the main characters like crap due to their non-straight sexualities.
Yes, you read that right. She was upset because the game wasn’t homophobic.
Not long after the piece went live, it gained traction online, and was understandably ridiculed. However, that wasn’t the end of it, as it soon found its way in front of Scott Benson, one of the game’s creators who disagreed with the narrative spun by the Medium post. Unexpectedly, his reaction quickly led to him being in the middle of a harassment campaign directed by the writer of the article, Movie Bob, and Arthur Chu. What ensued was an ever growing web of lies and slander aimed at a developer of the game.
The charges were that Benson was a ‘terf’ who abuses trans women, he changed his username to mock the writer, he deleted tweets of said harassment, and that he was sending hordes of followers to harass her. The author even had the audacity to criticize him for blocking her. Most crazy of all however, was a claim that the developer’s friends wanted to “gas her.”
Making everything worse is that all the accusations levied at Benson were blatantly false. As he mentioned in his own tweet, he himself was experiencing sleepless nights and anxiety over the incident. He had simply blocked the author of the article because she was nonstop tagging him in tweets, and a lot of hate was being hurled his way.
People jumped into his mentions to tell him that he was an abuser who was sending followers to harass the author. Some people even claimed he himself had started a hate campaign. All of them ignoring that he had repeatedly told people not to bother the author.
As I pointed out in my own Twitter thread last year, the entire situation was a frustrating mess. Even as I sit here typing this, I am furious because regardless of what I think about Night in the Woods, a game that wasn’t to my tastes, to see an innocent developer getting dog-piled upon for doing absolutely nothing wrong, and being slandered with false charges of transphobia and other bullshit is angering beyond reason.
I bring this all up, almost exactly a year later, because just today, hot off the news that some members of the Night in the Woods development team are creating a new co-op studio in which they will have no bosses, Movie Bob once again decided it was time to point out how the developer “eggs on harassment of trans writers.” A claim that is vile and disingenuous beyond belief.
Last year, as the whole event was going down, Movie Bob and Arthur Chu compared the event to gamergate, and you know what? It was a lot like gamergate. It was an event in which a bunch of SJWs began lying about the extent of their abuse, and in doing so they created harassment campaigns against people who did nothing wrong.
Bob and Chu may think they’re moral white knights, but they’re not. As is the author of the article, they are all victim olympic participants who engage in call-out culture, and compete for points over who can make up the most amount of hate. They are not only frauds, but sociopathic liars who get off on seeing people suffer.
Go through the receipts from last year and you will see a far left-leaning developer who made a queer positive game, yet to the intersectional blobs that get off on eating their own, he became a marked man and was descended upon by the villainous maws of pseudo-social justice nonsense.
I’m sure if I sat down with the developers of Night in the Woods, they and I would disagree on a whole lot. I have no misconceptions that if they so much as browsed my twitter feed and article history, they’d probably hate me. Our individual ideologies couldn’t be further apart, but that doesn’t matter because at the end of the day they made a game people love, and they’re innocent victims being called all types of things that they most definitely aren’t.
There is a toxic culture of far left bullies tied into gaming and entertainment culture who feign victimhood while directing hate at those who most certainly don’t deserve it, and I for one am sick and fucking tired of it. Regardless of where ideologies stand, it is time to start calling this nonsense out.
I assume anyone reading this site has a passion for gaming. I know I do, and just as I previously got angry when Tim Soret was misrepresented as a vile man, or when I was frustrated by false accusations of racism levied at Daniel Vavra and his game Kingdom Come Deliverance, I am equally mad at what is occurring to those that worked on Night in the Woods.
If you love gaming, show support for devs who are victims of unwarranted hate.