Borderlands 2's Tiny Tina is currently under scrutiny by Twitter users who argue that her use of ebonics is "actively racist."
The discussion began after Cryptozoic Entertainment creative developer Mike Sacco tweeted to the game's writer, Anthony Burch. "I really like BL2's writing, but Tiny Tina's trope of 'white girl talkin' like them urban folk!!' has got to go," Sacco said.
Several others agreed in turn, with one user even calling Tina's language "verbal blackface." Another user replied that Tina "equates stereotyped ebonics with wacky."
Burch said that his use of terms like "badonkadonk" or "crunk" were more for their rhythm or unusual wording.
"I'm just not convinced that a character using lingo like badonkadonk/crunk is inherently racist," Burch said. "If I'm wrong I would like to know why."
Others disagreed with a racist assessment of Tina, including Gearbox Software president Randy Pitchford. "Tina is not racist because you are not racist," Pitchford tweeted at Burch. "You're a pillar of tolerance and inclusion."
Burch is open to the idea altering Tina for future content, but re-creating scenes already within the game is "not feasible" due to technical constraints.
"The last thing I want to be is exclusionary or prejudice, so if Tina truly is problematic I'll change her," Burch said.
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