Dead by Daylight developer Behaviour Interactive has announced that the next update for the game will remove the ability for Leatherface players to wear the face of their victim's character following reports from players of targeted racist harassment.
The game – an asymmetrical horror title that pits 'survivor' characters against some of Hollywood's most infamous serial killers – features Leatherface (AKA: "The Cannibal") from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Like his movie counterpart, Leatherface is able to 'wear' the skin of his victims, and it's this feature that has caused issues.
One of the game's survivor characters, Claudette Morel, is a black woman, and Dead by Daylight players have reported that this specific mask is being used to target them for harassment. (You can see this issue being discussed in this video, which some viewers might find distressing and contains strong language.)
In a recent developer update, Behaviour Interactive explained the reasons for the removal of the option:
For those who may not know, The Cannibal can unlock the faces of the four original Survivors by sacrificing them 25 times.
Members of the community have shared their experiences with people targeting and harassing them while using some of these masks. These reports were disheartening to hear, and we absolutely condemn this behaviour. We are not comfortable having these masks in the game when they are used as a tool to spread hate. To that end, we will be removing The Cannibal’s unlockable faces in this upcoming Mid-Chapter.
Anyone who has ever played The Cannibal by the release of the Mid-Chapter update will be awarded 6,000 Iridescent Shards to compensate for their removal.
We will not tolerate hateful activity and will continue to take every step necessary to protect the community.
man, why can't people just be normal
blackface Leatherface? dear god
In the past year this game has had so many controversies… it’s sad because I’ve liked it from the beginning yet feel like I need to distance myself like I have with Overwatch
I don't get it?? What's happened
@WCB no. That’s not the issue. To have multicultural representation is vital in game and also allowing all the characters to be treated the same is also key. To not allow ALL the characters to be skinned and worn in this way would have been RACIST.
The issue here is people are RACIST. Blaming the game or turning it into “black face” which the feature never was.
The game did nothing wrong. It created representation and treated everyone equal. Perfect. People then used a feature to be racist. It’s on the racists. The game makers have moved to stop all the skins being used this way and not just the abused one for a reason.
To not have had this character to be able to be skinned in the first place would have been racist.
Think about it for just a second. This feature is grotesque (it’s a horror game so that’s allowed) it’s about a psycho skinning victims and wearing their skin. Please don’t make this “blackface” it clearly wasn’t that. The devs did nothing wrong.
The people abusing others have caused a perfectly reasonable feature to be removed.
I’d have preferred a better reporting system and banning of all abusers. Nintendo/Sony/MS could also block those accounts. Clamp down on racists. Don’t just remove one way they show their racism when plenty used the feature in a proper way.
That being said… I can see why in this instance they removed the feature. Any of what I have said above is in no way defending the game or devs from any other controversial events or personal racism that may arise from digging into their histories. I am merely talking on the skinning aspect of the game.
While I haven't played as Leatherface (I prefer Ghostface and Michael), as a huge horror fan who plays Dead by Daylight from time to time, I thought it was a cool idea to give Leatherface masks based on survivors from the game. It was a fun idea to tie things into his movies... That being said, while I'm sad to see the entire concept being removed from the game, I do understand that Claudette's mask was being used for horrible purposes and I'm disappointed that people used it to harass others. The Dead by Daylight community unfortunately has a lot of people who like to do their best to get a rise out of others, and I guess this was one way people took that to a serious extreme.
@gloom I personally wouldn't say this controversy was really on the part of the developers. I don't think they had bad intentions when they made this cosmetic, though it's not really hard to understand why people would be upset when it's used to harass others. Removing the masks was probably the safest and easiest action they could take here.
If I hack or exploit a game's economy I get banned. If I repeatedly racially attack other players the game gets altered & I don't get banned. OK... Systems exist to protect game companies from financial damage, with the side effect of getting rid of hackers & improving the experience for everyone. Those same systems are fit for the purpose of banning online bullies and showing the consequences to them personally. Changing the game only stops one form of abuse, those same idiots are still in there with everyone.
@nymbosox comment this was replying to is gone, but i paraphrased it more or less here
i feel like targeted harassment based on race isn't really something that can be waved as "no right or wrong messages being sent"; similarly "if you're offended, don't play!" only provides an out for those doing it
It's really good of the DBD dev team to not only recognize the problem, but openly and earnestly address it AND go the extra mile by correcting it.
I've heard great things about the game, and the positive dev team response definitely makes me want to buy it.
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It is a little absurd that a game where you take other peoples' lives and sow their skin into your own is offensive for any other reason than it's premise!
@nymbosox the comment this was a reply to was deleted by the user/downvote disappeared it seems, but i'll keep this up for posterity
that's...not how posting on a public forum works
at the end of the day, this is just simple "one person ruins it for everyone" stuff regardless, if it was just some schmoe it could be easy to write off but it is very easy to believe that people would purposefully target those streaming the game with harassment relevant to them, especially three "fog whisperers" or whatever the term is for partners (just a worse version of stream sniping, really)
@SuperCharr Clown world indeed.
@somebread that is exactly what is wrong with the world now, one idiot should not have to ruin it for everyone else. If your door breaks, you don’t just remove the whole house and affect everyone, you fix the smaller situation that caused the issue.
@nymbosox nuclear is just the easiest solution is generally the thought process i think, in a nintendo example, see the death of swapnote
if the removal of a cosmetic makes or breaks the game for people, that's...concerning, but the dbd community is notoriously toxic
the violence is fantasy, the racism is real.
its absurd that you do not know the difference, or worse if you are playing dumb.
@nymbosox vigeo games
@SuperZeldaFun Those people just fire up a vpn and make a sock puppet account. They are like roaches...you can not stamp out hatred. Humanity loves it too much. So decent people lose things until the roaches move on to the next thing to infect. So the cycle continues.
@-wc- I have suffered racism and am also aware that both the game and the people exist in this reality. Sooo.... if the game was overtly racist, that's ok in your book as it is 'fantasy'? Are you not self-aware? Should we not attempt to educate or change people's behaviour? Please read my first comment.
y'know this isn't exactly related to the article but I have to say that there is definitely a conversation that should be had on the portrayal of violence in video games (notably effects on those who have to design it; see MK11 and the fact it's kind of reaching an event horizon to maintain transgressiveness) but the fact is that between ridiculously conservative people using it as a talking point on the evils of gaming and that the only other time i see it brought up is to diminish the impact of any other type of potentially upsetting content in games it feels like there's a near-zero chance of there ever being a nuanced conversation on it again
@nymbosox Except it's not a broken door...it's a termite infection. You replace the door and they just eat the new one. You spray (bans) and they still come back (often with friends). And since hatred proliferates way faster than any living creature, you keep hacking at the house until there is nothing left or players move on because they don't want to have to deal with arsehats...then the termites must move on to the next one. People don't change, and hatred/hateful people certainly don't. Close one door and they find another. They don't want people to be happy, and will ruin everything they can. It's the only way they are happy.
I'm not in the target audience for this game, and haven't played it... but the gist I'm getting is either murder or be murdered? And people are saying they're being harassed...
I don't condone blackface, but like... Games where 50% of the gameplay is murder is ok?
I feel like our definition of "acceptable" is REALLY twisted.
@aznable How is fictional murder unacceptable. It's not real. The harassment on the other hand is.
Altering the game to attempt to solve the issue is akin to painting everybody's face white or black so we're all the same, rather than offer real world consequences to perpetrators of hateful behaviour. It essentially feeds racists because they can see how their precious game has been 'ruined' due to political correctness. Better to ban the actual racists, it's hard to ruin people's fun from outside the game. Being a racist bully should be a lonely pursuit.
@BTB20 Murder is messed up. I play games with violence (love me some Bloodborne), but I'm not down with simulated murder. Not trying to ride some moralistic high horse...
The word you're looking for is "unacceptable."
THERE'S my high horse!
It's astounding to think that there are people who believe "Well, if the game has violence and murder, it must condone it".
This has nothing to do with the contents of a fictional world created by a video game developer, but everything to do with people playing the game using the platform to harass people.
Why does Nintendo not allow game chat? Because we all know what the guy using black Yoshi will be called by someone. Did they change the game? No, they muted the people. Therefore it is the PEOPLE that need to change, unless the game is explicitly condoning and encouraging racism. Every game could be used to harass people, look at Fortnite/FIFA etc... In those games you are banned if you are abusive.
How are people being harassed by the use of this character skin? :S Even the video doesn't really show it except for one example that seemed a bit vague.
Not difficult to imagine people being racist in online games, not sure how many times I've been called n***** and I am white, but I wish the author provided examples of it in the article to give a better understanding of what is going on.
The world has gone mad...
Very unfair to poor Leatherface, he can't even diversify his facial accessories without cancel culture getting him.
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Better to get used to this sort of woke stuff. If you think the last few years were bad, it's about to get a whole lot worse before it gets any better.
So...this was an actual problem or was one of those case where some people complained in twitter and journalists/developers tried to make it out to be a bigger deal?
Good on them for candidly dealing with it. People crying culture cancel need to sing a different tune.
Not totally fair, they could ban the people harassing people rather than the feature itself, once again looks like a case of a small amount of people ruining it for the majority.
Looks like a profit protection as much as anything else.
So are they saying there banning the mask, but not the players? what? those players will still be playing the game, still being jerks!
unless I misread something in the article and this is not the case.
This was never an actual "thing" and the developers trying to "correct" it kind of miss the point. People will still type mean things at one another.
Never mentioned cancel culture, but there is very little context to any of this, as there must already be rules about racial or any other form of harassment on the game, and as you say perhaps people are being banned, just the article does not say.
I have to start avoiding the comment sections on these articles.
Good on the developers for what they did. To echo what @somebread said, if removing this cosmetic upsets you that much, you really need to reconsider who is acting more sensitive in this issue.
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NOT COOL they should fix this. We have enough Racism in real life and online gaming they don't need to add to this issue. And sorry but they are addressing it late but addressing it that goes alot more then most aka Confederate countries are willing to admit to their bigot past.
@priamXus Stupid is those not willing to fix the game issue. That's far different the society not willing to call it out in Real Life.
You can murder your victims and skin them and wear that skin ... but we draw the line at blackface!!
@SwitchForce clearly you’re in the stupid side that thinks that by just removing a feature the problem is solved. How naive.
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Yes murdering people and violence is not an issue anymore.
I don't think there's anything wrong with the cosmetic because leather face is a deranged serial killer that skins & wears people's faces I doubt he'd be worried about offending anyone it's the actual racism they should crack down on
So they get offended because a serial killer character that is known to treat every victim “equally” known for wearing a skin of victims happens to have a black victim among the options which is the “problem”, but is perfectly fine when said black survivers gets mutilated by said serial killer anyway during general gameplay?
Weird thing to cry about. Should they have just got rid of wearing a black person face then instead of gutting the entire feature? Knowing them they would cry about that too regardless because “no equal treatment”. You now just made Leatherface way more generic now
2022 social media “problems” is already out in full force. I don’t blame the developers for doing damage control with how easy “you are racist” label gets spread fast if you don’t bend over.
@priamXus And here we have a Stupid whom has no idea what Racism is. So when was the last time you had diversity. This removing in Game stop Stupid. The Game Company knows better then the society that doesn't want to call out Racism when it is seen that's the problem. Does anyone on here not know the history behind BlackFace obviously they don't on here and some of you need to go and readup on that before posting. Since your showing you lack the historical background why BlackFace is offensive.
@Arawn93 again it's more how people used it rather than the fact it exists, which ends up making it seem more skeevy than it would otherwise
There are some warped, cognitively dissonate, weirdos out there. Especially online.
I must be too old to get this but.... if the face mask is a cosmetic for your character, why using it could be seen as racist or a harrasment action? isnt the point of the game to harass the other player? I mean, you are playing a killer. How do they know they are harrasing people instead of just enjoying the cosmetic he work to obtain?
I think you are looking far too much into this, we live at a time with social media, where a single complaint or an opinion that's something is racist, has to be the truth, the developer knows it's far safer just to remove something than risk the full project getting cancelled, or further bad press on the various social media platforms.
There is no issue with the custom feature, it was there to offer every option, if certain people wanted to misuse it that's down to them, and the games moderators should have dealt with them accordingly, and as someone has said on here already, the game still gives you the tools to abuse people if you want too, he whole thing just makes little sense.
@Chocobo_Shepherd My thoughts exactly.
No No NOOOO that's not enough! Claudette and other characters of color shouldn't be hooked! Killers should put them in massage chairs with foot spas.
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“ We will not tolerate hateful activity” says the developers of a game where you literally cut off people’s faces and wear them as a mask. No that I have anything against making this type of game, it just seems ironic.
The skinning isn't the problem it most likely verbal content associated with the act is what leads to the problem. This is what people on here are forgetting. Banning those people won't stop it - if others aren't willing to call those other players or identity whom those players are in real life. Once they are identified that's only time they will be stop and others can go on killing and skinning each other as the game was intended for.
sorry my friend, I'm not sure what I was reading into your comment before that got my hair up.. I'm really not terribly proud of what I posted either, tbh. My bad.
No probs, it's a heated subject
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