League of Legends star Biofrost comes out as gay with scathing attack on eSports industry
Pro League of Legends player Vincent “Biofrost” Wang has come out as gay in a post on social media, calling for greater inclusivity in gaming and eSports.
Wang, who plays support for Dignitas’ League of Legends squad, made the announcement on Twitter, garnering widespread support from fans and other gamers.
In the lengthy post, Wang shared his experience dealing with issues around his “personal identity” throughout his life. He explained that he “moved around a lot from homestay to homestay” while his parents were working in China, and he had been “bombarded with homophobic and sexist remarks” when he was younger.
“Whenever I did something that wasn’t ‘manly’, I was told, ‘Why are you acting like a girl?’ and to stop being ‘gay’,” he wrote. “I was hyper-conscious of how I should act and tried not to act or sound ‘gay’, but I was still constantly bullied at school for it.”
He added: “No child should have to feel like they don’t belong.”
— Vincent (@Biofrostlol) May 7, 2022
But Wang said these feelings didn’t stop at childhood and followed him into his career working in the video game industry and professional eSports arena. Biofrost has been part of several teams throughout his eSports career including TSM and CLG before joining Dignitas in November 2021.
“On almost every team I’ve been on, I’ve heard homophobic comments from either my teammates or the staff and felt uncomfortable, even borderline afraid of possibly losing my job if I told the truth,” he said. “I’m at a point in my life where I’ve accepted who I am, and it’s taken me a long time to get there.”
Wang said his journey is “not unique” as he claimed that “sexism, prejudice and homophobia” are “rampant” within the gaming industry. He acknowledged there was no “quick fix” for such issues.
But he said that more awareness, education on LGBTQ+ identities and “holding ourselves to a higher standard” could help more people in the future be treated with the “dignity” they deserve.
“We need to educate people in eSports of proper conduct within the workplace,” Biofrost wrote. “I’m not making this announcement because I owe everyone details of my personal life, but because I want there to be more awareness about the problems our community faces.”
Wang has received an outpouring of support from fans, famous eSports personalities, steamers, gaming professionals worldwide and even his own team.
you’ll always be one of my best friends and I’m so proud of you for posting this
— Yiliang Peng (@Doublelift1) May 7, 2022
Love you Vincent thank you for sharing.
— Søren Bjerg (@Bjergsen) May 7, 2022
You are an inspiration to so many of our players and staff. Thank you for sharing your story. Our whole Dignitas family is incredibly proud of you
— Dignitas LoL (@DignitasLoL) May 7, 2022
Vincent!! We have such a long way to go but it’s courage like this that leads to more awareness & change. I’m so sorry for all the shit you had to go through but you sharing your story will inspire & comfort lgbtq+ in gaming community more than you know. A role model we need
— jaime (@iGumdrop) May 7, 2022
good on you brother. youre a legend now for more reasons than one. keep on going my man and continue the positivity
— CarlosR ocelote (@CarlosR) May 7, 2022
Proud of you for sharing!
Think it’s super important for those who feel discrimated against & marginalized in esports to know they’re not alone & have others who have shared their experiences.
Hopefully everyone can work together to make it a better & more welcoming place.
— Isaac CB (@AzaelOfficial) May 7, 2022
Biofrost added in a follow-up tweet that he didn’t “expect this amount of support”, and it made him “feel hopeful for the change that we can make in this community”.
League of Legends developer Riot Games has faced fierce allegations of its treatment of staff in the past. The game developer agreed in December to pay $100 million to settle a class-action lawsuit filed in 2018 alleging pay disparity, gender discrimination and sexual harassment.
According to the Associated Press, the lawsuit came after a damning article detailed a sexist culture within the Los Angeles-based company and included women being passed over for promotions and unwanted sexual advances.
The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing said the suit would remedy violations against more than 1,000 female employees and 1,300 female contract workers. Riot also agreed to improve its working conditions and provide a more equitable workplace for staff.
Riot said in a statement at the time that it “was at the heart of what became a reckoning in our industry”, and it “hadn’t always lived up to our values.”