Overwatch's Tracer Debacle and Why We Need to Get Rid of the Non Sequitur Argument

Tracer's Booty Debacle has me thinking about the silliness of the non-sequitur argument.

As I'm sure you've heard by now (as somehow it's even a trending Facebook news story), the team behind Overwatch is removing a victory pose by Tracer in which she basically looks over her shoulder and puts her ass out. Or, to quote Mystery Science Theater 3000's Crow (in the amazing Space Mutiny episode) "she's presenting like a mandrill!" I won't go into all the details as we already have an article that breaks it down for you that's an interesting read.

You can probably guess by the first paragraph, I'm for the removal. Honestly, I found Tracer fascinating in the first commercial in which she saves those kids and seeing her turned into yet another object by game devs was a bit of a bummer. But it's my personal opinion. If you disagree that's fine. That's not why I'm writing this.

The reason I'm writing this is because one of the "pro-booty" arguments I've been seeing a ton of lately.

"So, it's alright for us to be shooting people in the face, but if a character wants to hint at sexuality that's too much?"

This is what's known as a non-sequitur argument. It compares two things with nothing to do with each other beyond the fact that they're in the same game. Is shooting people in the face worse than hinting at sexuality? Of course it is, don't be daft. But let's look at what else is in the game.

Is the fact that many of the stages have the characters playfully firing bullets and throwing explosives in areas people clearly live in worse than the fact that there's hints of sexuality? Of course.

Does the games message that goggles are some how going to be considered protective wear against bullets and explosives a good message compared to hints of sexuality? Debatable.

Is there something disturbing about people struggling so hard to keep a booty pose in a game strange compared to debating the various issues in the world that are begging for this level of attention? Yup.

A monkey? A booty? Seriously. Stop.

"Please don't bring me into this..."

You can find things to weigh against it all night, but the fact of the matter is that a non-sequitur argument holds absolutely no weight. You're literally just picking something worse and comparing it to the issue you want to attack.

First off, we all know sexism is a massive problem in video games. It's incredibly obvious. If I need to explain it, I'll do it in another article, but it's something that's been covered ad nauseam because it's still there. Secondly, to invoke the argument that people fighting against sexism in gaming need to be, instead, worried about the violence portrayed in the games is an absolutely silly thing to say from someone who's actively playing and enjoying the game. This is logic is clearly being used as a smoke screen.

So, if you want to engage in this debate that's fine. I've seen decent points made on both sides, I've even seen a few pro-booty arguments that made me think and say, "not a bad point." But don't litter the threads with non-sequiturs. Please.



Just a 30-something year old man from Ohio. Wife. Two kids. Game systems. And a dog...somewhere...I think.

Published Mar. 29th 2016
  • David Fisher
    Featured Columnist
    tl;dr: This is a non-issue, and people really need to get over it on both sides. It's not a sexual pose, but it's getting replaced with something hopefully better and in-character. Move along, people... If you're worried about your lack of in-game booty to stare at, take a look at the other 18 some-odd characters that have the same pose.

    Okay, so my two cents on the situation is that both sides are kind of "stupid", really. I mean... I'm usually first to jump in on controversy (hence, why I'm typically the first to write on controversies here on GameSkinny), but both sides scream non-issue here.

    Fire Emblem: Fates cutting content was an issue since players were essentially buying 95% of a game for full price. That's bad. Overwatch removing *literally* one pose? That's a non-issue, especially since it's in beta. Back before games had public betas I can guarantee shit like this happened all the time behind the scenes, but no one heard of it. It's only because the "over the shoulder" pose existed in the first place that it has become a controversy.

    But don't get me wrong, I don't agree with its removal, either. Removing it because *literally* one person complained is not justifiable. It makes even less sense since almost every single other character in the game has the same pose. Sure, the team stated that they were thinking of it to begin with, but we have no idea if that's true or not. We can only take it at face value.
  • NotPC
    While I agree it's a non-issue really, It's the point of why they did it that I don't like. Am I naive enough to think they were talking about doing that anyway? No, but like you said, "We can only take it at face value."

    I don't like the road Blizzard has traveled the past few years which is why I have pretty much given up on their games. It's just not blizzard, but that's for another topic.
  • ElectricNerd
    Eh, I'm personally fine with Blizzard doing it. The person behind the choice to do it gave a pretty solid argument and, ultimately, it's their product they can do whatever with. Personally, I was bugged by it. Not enough where I argued against it but enough where I was hinging my preorder on whether or not this sort of thing was going to continue with the game. I'm happy they removed it, to be honest, as I think that was depressing.

    And I know the argument was "it was just an over the shoulder" pose. But honestly, her eyes were looking down at her ass and if you even look at Blizzard's Tracer statue the thing was ridiculously ass centric. They knew what they were doing.

    My two cents anywho.

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