#BlackoutStarWarsEclipse trends as fans rally against controversial developer of ‘Star Wars Eclipse’
The backlash against David Cage and his studio Quantic Dream was almost instant. At last Thursday’s Game Awards, just minutes after host Geoff Keighley made a statement against abuse, harassment, and predatory behavior in the game industry, the French studio that sued French journalists for reporting on its toxic workplace culture in court announced its rumored High Republic-era Star Wars video game, titled Star Wars Eclipse.
Within days, the hashtag #BlackoutStarWarsEclipse was coined, with @servingpinkmilk’s contribution the first publicly-viewable expression of a feeling that a number of Star Wars and gaming fans share: David Cage and Quantic Dream don’t belong in the galaxy far, far away.
A widely circulated compilation video tweeted out by Digital Gator captured the disappointment, gathering the reactions of several streamers watching the trailer when the Quantic Dreams logo appears at the very end.
Today the YouTuber added: “Artists/streamers like myself were put off by the dev team creating the new Star Wars game and for good reason,” followed by some strongly-worded wishes for both Quantic Dream and Cage.
There’s a good reason for the anger in Star Wars fandom at the moment. While Quantic Dreams won its libel suit against journalists in French court, it was unable to disprove misconduct allegations about its toxic workplace culture. The trial also exposed much more of the studio and auteurs toxicity to the public. Fanbyte reported earlier this year that Cage has publicly wielded homophobic and misogynistic slurs at the studio — and his semi-obsession with Elliot Page (per Kotaku’s account) has not exactly aged well.
While the criticisms have not subsided in the past week, prominent voices and content creators in Star Wars fandom joined in on Friday to restore the hashtags momentum. The popular YouTube channel Star Wars Explained, with over 700,000 subscribers, tweeted, “We will not be covering the game while Cage is involved, and we support the fans behind #BlackoutStarWarsEclipse.”
Mollie Damon, the channel’s social media manager, added, “Lucasfilm likes to say ‘Star Wars is for everyone’ but that isn’t the case with David Cage in charge of Quantic Dream.”
Many smaller channels and podcasts have spoken out against Quantic Dreams’ involvement in the IP.
Disney and Lucasfilm have sought to expand the series’ representation in the comics and novels set in the High Republic era. As such, Cage’s alleged offenses coupled with Lucasfilm Game’s decision to work with his studio were particularly infuriating. As one fan put it, “#BlackoutStarWarsEclipse because The High Republic is built on diversity and supports inclusion.”
The discontent is clear. One fan called the series’ association with Cage, “An absolute insult to our LGBTQ+ and BIPOC communities.”
“The involvement of David Cage is simply too horrifying to ignore,” added another. “Cage’s behavior towards women and the queer community warrants consequences for his bigotry.”
Many of the tweets are accompanied by a graphic that reads: “The Fans Deserve Better – The High Republic Deserves Better.”
Star Wars Eclipse does not have a release date at this time — and that might not be forthcoming anytime soon given the tenor of the online discussion around it.