Here’s The Joke Tim Schafer Made That Has Gamergate Freaking Out
Last night, Tim Schafer of Double Fine Games hosted the 15th annual Game Developer’s Choice Awards to a room full of his peers at the Game Developer’s Conference (GDC) in San Diego. Of course, it would be pretty difficult to make jokes and celebrate the gaming industry without at least mentioning the, ahem, sea lion in the room, and Schafer did so pretty spectacularly. How do we know this? Because all the prominent Gamergaters are losing their shit and calling him a racist. Welp, this oughta be good.
If you’re not able to view the video, here’s what he did: rather than poke fun at Gamergate himself, he created a sockpuppet account—using a literal sock puppet, of course—to make all the jokes for him, which resulted in this bit when he began to speak about visual art in gaming:
Sock: How many gamergaters does it take to make a single piece of armor?
Schafer: Oh, god, I don’t know.
Sock: Fifty. One to do the modeling, one to do the materials, and forty-eight to tweet that it’s not your shield.
Okay, so it’s definitely not the best joke (and Schafer’s puppet voice is terrible), but at least it works purely on a strictly linguistic, wordplay-centric sense. Armor? Shield? Get it?
But many Gamergaters were not happy about the use of their #NotYourShield hashtag, with which people of color, LGTBQ people, and women tweet about how they like Gamergate so those who are against the movement on the grounds that it behaves pretty unfairly to those kinds of people are clearly being disingenuous. (Hey head’s up, we aren’t.) It wasn’t just offensive to them—it was hate speech. And they sure did let the Internet know about it.
Tim Schafer SPECIFICALLY went out of his way to engage in hate speech against minorities, alternate gender identities, and sexualities.
— Oliver Campbell (@oliverbcampbell) March 5, 2015
I am still at a loss for words…what Tim did is a huge setback to peace and diversity.
— Mark Kern (@Grummz) March 5, 2015
By the way, the “Not Your Shield” campaign, despite attracting some real marginalized people who truly believe in the “ethics in game journalism” angle, was reportedly conceived of as a way to deflect genuine criticism from those who specifically got into the movement as a way to spew hate at Zoe Quinn.
— weaponized irony (@alexlifschitz) March 5, 2015
— moves like Jaggi (@TheQuinnspiracy) September 6, 2014
Meanwhile, one of the panels that Zoe Quinn spoke at earlier this week literally required a police presence—which is almost unheard of at GDC—because of all the death threats she’s gotten since Gamergate began. So, yeah. Forgive me if I’m not grabbing my pitchfork for Schafer just yet.
But enough about my angry mob gear. What do you all think of the joke, friends?