Devotion GOG Release Pulled Under Chinese Pressure

GOG Pulls Devotion From Sale

In a dramatic U-turn, GOG (CDPR) has pulled the Taiwanese psychological horror game, Devotion. The reason given is the backlash from Chinese gamers over President Xi Jinping being depicted as a Winnie The Pooh meme in the game. Devotion was removed from Steam in February 2019 for the same reason, having been review bombed by Chinese players incensed over the apparent disrespect shown to their president. Let’s not forget that Taiwan has been a thorn in China’s side for many years and was in fact under martial law until 1987 and censorship in China is a form of state control that we in the west find abhorrent.

But this controversy goes much further back to 2017 when Winnie The Pooh was banned in China because of comparisons made between the children’s character (shown on the left, next to Tigger) when walking next to President Obama.

…the president is Mr Grey. He doesn’t do silly things; he has no quirky elements; he makes no mistakes and that is why he is above the population and unable to be questioned.

This comes quickly on the heels of CDPR launching Cyberpunk 2077, a game that deals with totalitarianism and corporate control and this move doesn’t sit well with CDPR/GOGs reputation as a democratic, DRM-free game developer ‘for the people‘, as it were. On the other hand, since when did human rights stand in the way of business opportunities?

Heck, even YouTube is blocked in China, along with hundreds of others, so it comes as no surprise that the world’s favourite bear has been booted out for being nothing more than a honey-loving children’s favourite. But business is business and CDPR’s de-listing of Devotion, whilst utterly disingenuous, is entirely in line with many Western companies’ strategy in China and should come as no surprise to anybody.

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