By Dalton McClain / March 29th, 2017
DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not reflect oprainfall as a whole.
I want to start off by saying that my personal opinions in no way represent Operation Rainfall. We’re a site that proudly represents different ideas and viewpoints. All of my sources used are linked for those who wish to double check the facts. Feel free to comment however you personally feel, I’ll make an effort to respond to whoever I can. So without further ado, here’s how I feel about the whole Yooka-Laylee debacle.
Personally, I’ve been hyped about this game since it was announced. Yooka-Laylee is a 3D platforming game styled off of games made famous by Rare. Consoles have been solely lacking in 3D collect-a-thon platforming games for quite some time, so it was a breath of fresh air to be able to see something that hadn’t been done in forever. It made me hearken back to the old days of playing Banjo-Kazooie with a couple of my friends, while still impressing me with some of the updated mechanics and visuals. All of this has me really excited to relive the genre that got me interested in video games in the first place.
Recently, Playtonic Games have gotten themselves into some hot water after removing a voice actor from their cast due to his personal political viewpoints. His name is Jon Jafari, and personally, I’m a huge fan of both him and his work. He’s an entertainer and runs the YouTube channel named JonTronShow, where he posts humorous videos reviewing anything from games, to movies, to drug PSA’s. We may not see eye to eye politically, but I respect him heavily as a content creator. Recently, he’s released a bunch of his political opinions online, and it’s caused quite a stir in the online community. He had released statements on Twitter stating his opinions on immigration, as well as appearing in a debate video that is now really well-known thanks to various media outlets. Some people may have seen some of his views as being a little radical. He did release a statement video, later on, stating that he was under a lot of pressure during the debate and wasn’t adequately prepared, therefore some of his comments were said in ways that could’ve potentially been misconstrued.
Playtonic Games stated that they had removed Jon from their new game Yooka-Laylee because they “do not endorse or support JonTron’s personal viewpoints” and that he “does not represent Playtonic in any capacity”. It’s easy to see why people online are upset, as this is a form of censorship. They removed someone from their lineup simply because he didn’t agree with them on political matters. This is a really terrible thing to do to someone who agreed to voice act in their game simply because of the love that he had for the series that this game was based upon. All he wanted to do was entertain people, but he couldn’t because someone disagreed with him politically. It’s gotten to the point where all people talk about is politics and controversy instead of actually looking at games, and that’s the exact reason that I decided to write this piece.
In our world today, everything has to be politically charged. But let me ask you this, why does it have to be this way? Every time I search for Yooka-Laylee online, this controversy is the first thing that pops up. Does anyone else remember when games used to be about the game and not about the politics surrounding the game? Sure the politics were there, but gamers didn’t really care so long as the game that they were purchasing was good. Now there are people that aren’t even buying video games because they have some sort of political agenda attached to them, like games by Double-Fine because of Tim Schafer supporting Anita Sarkeesian. Gaming was created to help bring people together, but all we’ve managed to do is drive ourselves apart. That doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t ignore what happened, far from it. Playtonic Games did a terrible thing in a really bad way and should be held accountable. However, that also doesn’t mean that we only need to see that one viewpoint either. I think that we need to go back to the days of looking at a game for what it is, and not letting the politics of everything get the better of us. We should judge the game based on the game, and the developers for the developers. We can’t let our displeasure for one mistake that the developer made get in the way of a potentially really good blast from the past. We should just rise above all of this nonsense and put an end to the constant arguing and bickering so that we can all do what we love to do and relax again. Jon has tried to put it all behind him, so why can’t you? I just want to play games and have fun again.
Unfortunate to see Playtonic remove me from Yooka Laylee, but I understand their decision. I wish them the best with their launch!
— Jon Jafari (@JonTronShow) March 23, 2017
Jon JafariJonTronPlaytonic Gamesyooka-laylee