Epic Games Boss Says Politics Shouldn't Be In Games

Ruben Fields
February 17, 2020

More pertinently, however, the Epic Games Store itself already plays host to a number of games that are inherently political, from Ubisoft's The Division 2 and its Assassin's Creed series, to the likes of Phoenix Point and Detroit: Become Human.

The CEO believes a lot of video game publishers are now moving away from the model of loot boxes.

Sweeney posed questions to the audience at DICE 2020 about how they wanted the future of video games to look like.

"Cross-platform is the future, and we all have to do our part."

Adam Sussman President of Epic Games Fortnite

The comment about fast food appears to be a reference to chicken chain Chick-fil-A, which has been criticised for donating to anti-gay organisations. On Twitter, Sweeney clarified that he meant "a company like that shouldn't take a position on an issue like this, because it's out of the scope of their mission".

Hunting to clear the confusion up, Sweeney posted:"When a match accomplishes politics, as To Kill a Mockingbird failed as a book, it ought to come in the center of creatives rather than from advertising departments trying to capitalize on branch". These clarifications seem like good ideas in a vacuum, but we're not in a vacuum.

"We have businesses that profit by doing their customers harm", stated Sweeney as quoted by the Hollywood Reporter, calling out Google and Facebook specifically for the latter, explaining that they offer a free service in terms of gaming "then make you pay for their service in loss of privacy and loss of freedom". Unsurprisingly, he used Fortnite as a shining example of cross-platform technology. Having a credit card to be able to buy a battle pass is political. Sweeney acknowledged that there is no single approach to the inclusion or exclusion of politics in games. Other countries maintain they do not classify loot boxes as a form of gambling. But it's Fortnite's success that has reinforced Sweeney's stature within the games industry, so when he talks about the market, people listen. To include LGBTQ characters in Stardew Valley is political. Epic Games will never implement any pay-to-win mechanisms while Sweeney is CEO, with the boss saying the company and its developers have a responsibility to its player base.

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