Red Candle Games: Devotion Controversy Caused “Immeasurable Harm”
Some four months ago, Taiwanese game developer Red Candle Games (the studio behind the fantastic Detention) got in hot water with Chinese players and ostensibly the Chinese government for references to Chinese president and General Secretary of the Communist Party of China, Xi Jinping. As a result of the incident, Devotion was review-bombed by supporters of the Chinese communist party and removed from Steam — and it may very stay that way if things don’t improve. Red Candle today made their first statement in months about the unfortunate situation that caused “immeasurable harm” to their studio and their partners, and about the fate of Devotion.
In their statement, Red Candle takes responsibility for the incident, calling it a “malfunction of project management.” They go on to say that they and their partners have unanimously decided to not re-release Devotion in the near-future. The game may see the light of day again after they’ve rebuilt trust with players (at least those that found these political jabs at Xi Jinping and the communist party offensive in the first place). “If, in the future, the public would be willing to view this game rationally and allow us the opportunity to rebuild trust with our players, Red Candle would consider re-release ‘Devotion.'”
Red Candle apologizes profusely to its partners, which includes Chinese publisher Indievent which lost its business license some weeks ago. They state that they hope their partners are excused from further criticism as Red Candle takes full responsibility for the controversial political content in Devotion. The statement ends with Red Candle hoping for a “second chance in the near future,” and that they’ll continue being passionate about creating games despite the aftermath of the incident.
Hopefully Devotion and Red Candle receive the second chance they’re hoping for. It’s shame so much damage was caused from “Winnie the Pooh” and “pork bun” jokes (among other things).
Greetings, we are Red Candle Games from Taiwan. To all of our players, industry and media friends, we would like to provide an update on ‘Devotion’. pic.twitter.com/wfGTUbHtHx
— redcandlegames (@redcandlegames) July 15, 2019