Blizzard has been riding high as gamers across the world continue flooding the company's Overwatch servers following the game's recent release. The online game, however, is now being taken down a notch as Hindus are speaking out against one of the game's character skins for Symmetra because it makes the figure look like one of their respected gods.
In a statement, the President of the Universal Society of Hinduism Rajan Zed asked Blizzard to remove the skin from Overwatch as it “trivialize[s] Hinduism’s highly revered goddesses.”
The Overwatch character taking heat for the update is Symmetra, a popular character who works for the Vishkar Corporation as a light-bending architect. Able to bend reality, Symmetra stands as the company’s most talented architect who can construct almost anything from her light-bending abilities. And, as such, the Vishkar Corporation also uses Symmetra to send her on missions to protect the company’s global interests. As Symmetra has what many would consider omnipowerful gifts, some aren’t surprised the character is associated with an actual goddess, Devi.
In Hinduism, Devi is an important goddess who’s been worshipped since prehistoric times and stands as one of the faith’s most well-known deities. Devi is often associated with creationism, and while the goddess' visage isn't entirely replicated through Symmetra’s skin, several key elements of the goddess’ appearance are mirrored in Overwatch. Particularly, the skin features Symmetra wearing a belt adorned with skull decorations and has her sporting blue-colored skin like Devi does.
In Rajan’s statement, he said that the the goddess’ appearance in the game mocks Devi’s true powers. And, what’s more, Rajan said that Overwatch did not gift the skin to a character whose personality and temperament aligned with the goddess. He has since called on Blizzard to, “follow its own “core values” which included “lead responsibly” (As one of the world’s leading game companies, we’re committed to making ethical decisions), as in this case it was creating confusion in the minds of community about Devi by misrepresentation.”
Blizzard has not yet released a statement addressing Rajan’s statement.