The game Overwatch reached a milestone in April with more than 30 million registered players worldwide across PC, Playstation 4 and Xbox One.
But for a video game that features characters and voice actors from different nationalities and ethnicities, the community is still rife with racism.
Cosplayer Krissy Victory posted a YouTube video back in May, discussing what she goes through when dressing up as Overwatch’s Korean character, D.Va, and the comments she gets as a black cosplayer.
She told Now Loading’s Jay Vergara in an interview: “It kept going. It was a sea of n-words.”
But that was just the beginning.
Victory went on:
“[Words like] ape, kill yourself. It got so out of hand it shell-shocked me. I would keep banning people off my pages. They would share the picture to insult me anyway, and there would be nothing I can do.”
She then received even more hate on Facebook following the interview, as you can see in the screenshots she shared on Twitter:
Some of the racist stuff was censored but here’s the tea ☕️ bombs away pic.twitter.com/4kFMYFKc6I
— 💎V I C T O R Y💎 (@KrissyVictory) June 7, 2017
As Mic notes, black people will always be seen as the “black version” of a character that is being cosplayed, and viewed by fans as ruining their characters.
The cosplay community can be just as toxic as the gaming community, with nerds of color getting so much shade for liking comics, etc. and it’s such a shame.
Victory, however, also talked about how the positive support from fans outweighed the negative remarks.
“Through the cloud of hate there were people there telling to me push forward,” she said in her interview.
“If I just gave up and never did D.Va again, there wouldn’t have been as many D.Va cosplayers as there is now that were black. And by no means do I mean that in a narcissistic way. … It was so much second-guessing but I did D.Va anyway. I kept bringing her to cons, I kept taking photos and smiling. Mainly to piss off racists. And eventually I started seeing more D.Vas.”