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A development studio that helped co-develop of some of Tripwire Interactive’s titles has cut ties with the company after its president publicly backed recent anti-abortion legislation.
John Gibson, the president of Maneater and Killing Floor developer Tripwire, tweeted his support for the US Supreme Court’s decision not to block a new law in Texas that bans abortions for most women.
The ‘Heartbeat Act’ makes it illegal for women to have an abortion after six weeks, and includes a “a private civil right of action”, which means any Texas citizen – even those not involved in the incident – has the right to sue anyone involved in an abortion for up to $10,000.
“Proud of #USSupremeCourt affirming the Texas law banning abortion for babies with a heartbeat,” Gibson tweeted. “As an entertainer I don’t get political often. Yet with so many vocal peers on the other side of this issue, I felt it was important to go on the record as a pro-life game developer.”
Gibson’s tweet was met with heavy criticism on Twitter, with many players vowing never to buy Tripwire’s games again.
UPDATE: Chivalry II developer TornBanner Studios has now stated that it too disagrees with Gibson’s message.
“We do not share the opinion expressed in a recent tweet by the president of Tripwire, publisher of Chivalry 2”, it tweeted. “This perspective is not shared by our team, nor is it reflected in the games we create. The statement stands in opposition to what we believe about women’s rights.”
ORIGINAL STORY CONTINUES: It also provoked a response from Shipwright Studios – a “co-development” studio that has worked with Tripwire in the past on games like Maneater and Chivalry II – who tweeted a public statement aimed at Gibson declaring that it would never work with his company again.
“While your politics are your own, the moment you make them a matter of public discourse you entangle all of those working for and with you,” the statement reads.
“We have worked closely alongside the talented and passionate developers at Tripwire and your partners for the last 3+ years.
“We know it is difficult for employees to speak up or act out in these scenarios, and they may not feel comfortable to speak their minds.
“It is regrettable, but we feel it would be doing ourselves, your employees, your partners, and the industry as a whole a disservice to allow this pattern to continue with comment.
“We started Shipwright with the idea that it was finally time to put our money where our mouth is. We cannot in good conscience continue to work with Tripwire under the current leadership structure. We will begin the cancellation of our existing contracts effective immediately.”
Tripwire’s most recently published title was Chivalry II, which included co-development work by Shipwright.