clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Paradox removed a Steam mod that eliminated nonwhites from Stellaris

"We do not ... wish to enable discriminatory practices"

Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

Paradox Interactive, developer and publisher of the successful new grand strategy title Stellaris, has taken decisive action to remove a user-created mod from Steam. The mod, titled "European Phenotype and Names Only (White Humans)" removed every instance of a non-European name or a non-Caucasian character portrait from the game's representation of the human race.

"No multiculturalism here," read the mod's original description. The Steam link currently leads to an error message. The content of the mod remains available through ModDB.

Reached for comment while the mod was still live on Steam, Paradox gave Polygon the following statement.

"We shipped the game originally with an accurate representation of humans, that is to say diverse in both ethnicity and personality. We embrace the idea that players mod the game to best represent how they want to play, we do NOT however wish to enable discriminatory practices. We appreciate any inappropriate mods being brought to our attention and will take them down where necessary, we also encourage players to make use of the flagging function provided by Valve where needed."

Eurogamer reports that a second mod, titled "Separate Human Phenotypes" is also under review.

Stellaris received generally solid reviews, including here at Polygon, when it launched just a few weeks ago. Paradox's own press materials say it was their fastest selling title ever.

Space Empire Builder Stellaris in Action

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for Patch Notes

A weekly roundup of the best things from Polygon