The lead designer for the Harry Potter RPG Hogwarts Legacy, Troy Leavitt, is being criticized for some of his past YouTube videos.
It’s no secret that Hogwarts Legacy is one of the most hotly-anticipated games currently in development. The upcoming Harry Potter RPG has a great deal of hype behind it as one of the first true triple-A games set in the Wizarding World, though it’s now found itself in the center of controversy. Hogwarts Legacy lead designer Troy Leavitt is facing criticism for videos he uploaded to YouTube in the past.
Leavitt’s YouTube channel was pointed out by Twitter user Liam Robertson, who is known for collaborating with Did You Know Gaming. Robertson described Leavitt as a “far right YouTuber” who made “anti-fem and pro GG vids.” GG in this instance is in reference to the Gamergate controversy, which included a harassment campaign targeted primarily at Zoe Quinn, Brianna Wu, and Anita Sarkeesian.
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Many of Leavitt’s videos are indeed about Gamergate and feminism in video games. In the video “Gamergate – Thoughts of a developer,” Leavitt outright states, “I would say that I’m generally supportive of Gamergate as I understand it.” He also said that the way Gamergate “blew up” was “way overdue.” He also made a video entitled “In Defense of John Lasseter” the former Disney executive who departed from the company after being accused of sexual misconduct.
Leavitt is not hiding his controversial YouTube videos. In fact, he has a direct link to his YouTube channel on his Twitter page. However, Leavitt’s YouTube channel was not widely known, sitting at 25.6 thousand subscribers. Some of the videos did manage to perform rather well, with a video responding to Anita Sarkeesian’s Feminist Frequency series earning over half a million views on the video hosting site, but that was prior to Leavitt serving as lead designer for such a high profile game. Robertson’s tweet is gaining traction, and so it seems as though many more people will become aware of Leavitt’s past videos.
This is far from the first time that someone involved with creating Harry Potter content came under fire for controversial statements. Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling has similarly been criticized for making controversial statements, to the point where some Hogwarts Legacy developers have said that her comments made them feel uncomfortable.
J.K. Rowling is not involved with Hogwarts Legacy‘s development, though, so this situation could have a more direct impact on how people view the game. It will be interesting to see how Leavitt responds, especially if it continues to draw more attention.
Hogwarts Legacy is in development for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X for release in 2022.
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