Spider-Man being on PC was always going to bring out a whole host of mods. The Raimi Trilogy is second only to the Star Wars prequels as the most memed movie series of all time, and the webhead has decades of comics, television shows, and films behind him. Within a few days of launch, you could already play as Uncle Ben’s gravestone. But the talk of the town has been a very different mod – the removal of the Pride flags in the game, replaced by the Stars and Stripes. The modder has now been banned, and Nexus itself has come out swinging. This is exactly how we need to react to these things.
Any mods intended to “deliberately be against inclusivity and/or diversity” are not allowed. “We don't want to and won't argue this with you. We've now explained our stance and we won't be providing a platform for you to distort our position in order to feed an irrational and paranoid narrative. You can do that elsewhere, where we won't care enough to read it. If this policy upsets you, if we've broken some moral code of conduct as a business that you can't accept, then please, delete your account and move on, as we will." reads the statement from Nexus.
There’s no technicalities. There’s no loopholes. There’s no appeasement, no sense that action has been taken in this specific case only due to public pressure. No attempt to get the world to join hands in harmony, no buzzwords, just a very simple ‘goodbye’. This is how it should be. If you love the Spider-Man game but your enjoyment is stopped by a couple of Pride flags that have no impact on the gameplay or story, you probably have some deep personal issues to break through and don’t deserve to enjoy this game in the first place.
I know you think Nexus and the LGBT(add as many letters as you think is funny, season to taste) community are just triggered cucks who can’t take one little mod, but check your pants. Yep, that’s piss in there. You’ve done pissed yourself. Saw yourself a rainbow flag and just started pissing. Wait… you shit yourself as well? Ah mate, don’t cry. Just replace it with an American flag, that’ll make it all better buddy. America sees itself as a bastion of peace, freedom, and individuality even as it repeatedly cedes to the right and rolls back the wheels of progress, so replacing a Pride flag with the US flag is an act of ironic, artistic genius… or at least it would be if your underwear wasn’t full of piss and shit.
Spider-Man is not particularly progressive or inclusive. There’s a gay flag but no gay characters. It’s so easy to just let this slide and it’s strangely hateful and childish that people can’t. ‘B-b-b-b-but I could say the same about Nexus mods! You’re all triggered!’ Cute, but not exactly accurate. If there were American flags in the game to begin with (there are, but if they were specifically where the Pride flags are), nobody would have been triggered. Nobody would care. It’s the act of erasure that matters. LGBTQ+ people are often accused of rubbing their sexuality in peoples’ faces just for existing, but in Spider-Man, they don’t exist. The flag is the smallest amount of inclusion possible, and still your pants are full of piss and shit.
Then there’s the copious praise the game gets for being realistic. We’ve all read the news stories of people finding their apartment block in the game, or comparisons to real-life landmarks. Does anyone really want to argue that it’s unrealistic for New York City to have a couple of Pride flags here and there? You might as well take out the Statue of Liberty too – although as a symbol of America welcoming refugees in an era where immigrants are public enemy number one, Lady Liberty is just as ironic as the rainbow flag being painted red and white.
Nexus Mods has made the right call here, puffing out its chest and saying firmly that homophobes can go home. Gaming companies like to mince their words and hedge their bets, so it’s cool to see one come out swinging. If you don’t like it, change your pants.
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