A storm is brewing … Screenshot: thatgamecompany
The Last update to thatgamecompany Sky: children of light introduced a new hat that sparked controversy among Chinese and Korean fans of the game, with both sides claiming cultural significance related to the cosmetic item and refusing to give a thumbs up on social media.
Although the props are not labeled in the game, the Sky community has widely assumed that the hat in question is meant to look like a ‘gat’, traditional korean headwear which was popularized during the Joseon period, when the game received its “Season of Dreams” update on January 4th. It was even tagged as such in the crowdsourced Sky wiki before several references to Korean culture were made. deleted earlier today.
This is what the Sky: Children of LIght wiki looked like before all references to Korean culture were removed.
These allusions did not please some Chinese users, who were quick to claim the hat as part of their cultural heritage both in-game and on social media, echoing a biggest movement by Chinese nationalists to discredit Korean culture as “stolen” from China because of the two regions historical relation. Netease, the company that publishes Sky in China, even players encouraged to correct those who characterized the in-game hat as Korean in origin on Chinese social media site Weibo.
(It should be noted that the cape that accompanies the hat has also been recognized as part of Korean culture, but almost all of the discussion has centered on the hat.)
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Sky director Jenova Chen finally addressed the situation himself, writing on Twitter. late last night that the headgear was inspired by similar hats worn by the Chinese during the Song and Ming dynasties.
“I sincerely apologize for the recent hat controversy in Sky,” Chen wrote. “I didn’t intend to create unnecessary confusion or cause divisions between our community, where we always advocate positivity and inclusion. We come from different places, but in Sky we are family. The world we want to create is based on the common thread of humanity, free from all labels. I sincerely hope that Sky will continue to bring compassion and peace to our community. ”
Contacted by Kotaku, a representative from thatgamecompany reiterated Chen’s statement, adding that it was not the developers’ intention to “emphasize historical identity” with Season of Dreams cosmetics.
“We have not done a sufficiently thorough assessment of how our cosmetic products can impact our global community, and have unknowingly included a garment of historical significance between different regions,” said the representative. “We are committed to doing better in the future. Thatgamecompany is a multicultural game studio and we draw on various influences in our development process. Millions of gamers have already connected and made lasting friendships through Sky: Children of the Light. We hope the game will continue to foster unity and compassion for others, no matter where the players live.
Unfortunately, these messages of unity did not completely crush the debate. Chen’s explanation caused a separate backlash, in which players who seem sympathetic to Korea express their frustration that Chen, in their minds, sided with China in the culture war.
As someone who learns very quickly about traditional headgear, I can’t say for sure who is right, but I understand why both sides are protecting something that they believe is an integral part of their cultural heritage. . It’s just sad that this must have happened in a game as peaceful and conducive to meaningful social interaction as Sky: Children of Light.
Article source https://kotaku.com/a-hat-generates-big-controversy-in-latest-sky-children-1846201880