Video Game Empowers Players To Smack Talk With Gay Stereotypes

Players losing in Heroes of Newerth 2.0 may find that they've had their "cherry popped" or taken part in a "three way" if the person they're playing against purchased the PC game's "flamboyant" audio pack.

The pack replaces the regular announcer's voice with a lisping effete man's voice. The phrases used in the game change the audio from things like "Blood Lust" to "Cherry Popper" and from "Hat Trick" to "It's a three way". The words also fly out across the screen in rainbow-colored letters.

The audio packs will be heard by the opponent of the person who purchased the pack, not the owner. So if I were to purchase the pack and play the game with you, you would be the one hearing those sound files.

Website Gay-Nerds.Com calls the pack puerile and insensitive, a misfired joke.

"The whole announcer schtick was meant to humiliate and taunt the other player and then they also decided to use an effeminate male voice, rainbows, glitter and an oversexualised gay stereotype," writer Paranoia says in his story. "Why not just call it the 'faggot' pack instead of the flamboyant pack? It's pretty clear what you're trying to make fun of. Calling it flamboyant doesn't hide anything."

Contacted for comment this morning, the developers had this to say:

"The flamboyant pack is one of many voice pack options that will be available for HoN 2.0 players. The intention of offering a wider range of voice packs, including the flamboyant pack, is to bring a broad representation of personalities to HoN that let gamers express and differentiate themselves."

Check out the audio pack for yourself at 4 minutes and 50 seconds into this Giant Bomb video above and decide for yourself if this audio pack goes too far.

Really Heroes of Newerth? Really? [Gay-Nerds]


    Well this is just making me want to play the game even less. If the asses ingame aren't abusive enough, now the game will auto-taunt as well? No thanks.

    I'm in two minds about this.

    Is it insensitive? Definitely. If there's one thing we don't need any more of, it's stereotypes. That audio pack is meant to be light-hearted, sure, I get that. It's deliberately over the top. But the humour only goes one way. It uses outdated stereotypes for a cheap laugh, and the attempts by the developers to explain it as a "broad representation of personalities" is absurd.

    At the same time, I'm wary of jumping on any bandwagon of condemnation. It's tacky, tactless and insensitive - sure - but not offensive. There are bigger fish to fry, and a huge fuss might even do more harm than good. As an author on that blog remarked, being offended is hardly a good hobby, and we can't infer prejudice from everything.

    Tl;dr? I don't think the pack was designed to cause offence. It's unfortunate and insensitive, certainly immature, but not something to turn into a big deal.

      Yeah, I'd have to say this was just ignorance on the developer's part, not of malicious intent.
      That said, gays are not the only people affected by these situations. Many voice packs for games, old and new, usually offend someone. That's life.

      Hell, just look at most of the Worms games, and their voices.

    Maybe I'm just insensitive or naive, but 'Cherry Pop' and '3-way' are also heterosexual terms. The fact they used a guy with a lisp doesn't make it necessarily gay. People choose to be insulted with stuff like this.

    It isn't even maliciously homophobic, it's so over-the-top in a John Waters fashion it's just kitschy. I'd be more concerned with in-game chat where 'faggot' is used all the time by angry 13 year olds.

    Yet another reason why Heroes of Newerth gets its ass kicked by League of Legends.

      What are you smoking Arcane?

      LoL is no where near as good as HoN. This is truth.

      Don't even compare the two. Playing LoL in the first place over HoN pretty much renders your opinion useless.

      As for gays getting upset, whats new? A group of people is always going to be OFFENDED by a stereotype. It's a game, it's a flamboyant voice with rainbows...?

      lets rant and rave over it.

      Back to LoL for you Arcane.. Cartoon gfx, free2play, no deny and shit ganks/teamfights FTW.

      Gee I can't wait to pwn some1 and let them hear how i just f**ked them threeway with rainbows.

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