Apex Legends game designer fired after appalling racist and sexist blog posts resurface
A lead designer on Apex Legends has recently been fired for old blog posts with racist and sexist remarks.
The designer, Daniel Klein, acknowledged the posts and confirmed his dismissal on Twitter.
As of last Friday, I am no longer working at Respawn. I want to be very open here and say that I'm heartbroken and depressed. It's been a very dark few days.
— Daniel Zenon Klein (@danielzklein) August 10, 2021
“I want to be very open here and say that I’m heartbroken and depressed. It’s been a very dark few days,” he wrote.
“You may or may not have seen the awful, bigoted things I said in 2007. I wholeheartedly agree that THAT guy should have been fired.
“I said racist and sexist things, not because I deeply believed any of them, but because I knew I could get a reaction out of people. That does not excuse anything I said; the impact of my words was the same regardless of what I believed.”
The posts surfaced online in July, with Klein fired by Respawn in response.
The posts include misogynistic views on Eve from the Bible story, refers to X chromosomes as “moron chromosomes”, and Klein also spoke about African people as if they were animals.
These are the screenshots he is referring to. Calling Women unable to make rational decisions, only good for cum in the eye, etc…Also a sly comment on Africans on the last one. Is this who you want as the lead balancer at respawn? https://t.co/JtQGSYymrn pic.twitter.com/mOrG7Hy9as
— The Sherrif (@Apex_Sherrif) July 28, 2021
Though Klein apologised and claims that he has poured energy into becoming a better person, he admits that Respawn has made the right decision.
“I’m just truly sorry to the Apex team. This is a headache they did not need. I know what their future plans are and I absolutely believe Apex has a bright future. There’s so much cool shit coming. I just wished I could have worked on it,” he said.
Klein previously worked for League of Legends developer Riot Games, but his progressive politics and gameplay balance work on Apex Legends was seen as contentious.
In an email to Kotaku, Klein believes he was targeted because of this.
“I fully own the awful, bigoted statements I made in 2007 and am disgusted with my younger self for making them,” he said.
“But there’s also no doubt in my mind that they came to light because someone went looking for things to hurt me with. EA was aware of this allegation, and I specifically asked them to be on the lookout for these strategies being used against other employees in the future.”
The news may come as a surprise to Apex Legends players as the game is known for its diverse representation and LGBT+ cast.
In fact, a recent study named it the most diverse game available.