The Wagadu Chronicles is an upcoming 5E-based MMORPG that takes inspiration from various African cultures and mythologies. Developer Twin Drums’ founder is speaking out against recent harassment and abusive backlash with false accusations against the game’s art director.
According to a statement published this morning, Twin Drums founder Allan Cudicio emphasized that the studio is Black founded and owned, but the team is located in places all over the world and is a diverse team working on the project. The game’s art director, Iga, is one of the non-Black members of the team and this was the main reason that she was targeted, according to the statement.
After working with a different collaborator for a year, Cudicio says that Iga offered to step in after the previous art collaborator quit the project after finding out he was queer.
An announcement by our founder on the recent Twitter backlash against one of our artists. pic.twitter.com/PY9gTQ1A6G— The Wagadu Chronicles | MMORPG & 5E Setting (@WagaduChronicle) August 8, 2022
“She immediately connected with the nature of the project and as a result produced all of the stunning visual pieces that we've shared with you on our social media,” he says. . “From the beginning Iga has been a great addition to our team and has stood firmly behind twin drums mission of uplifting Black/PoC professionals within the industry.”
The harassment seems to be rooted in some accusations of “taking advantage of black folks” and that some of the nude art in the game was met with accusations of “fetishization” by a white artist. Unfortunately, after enough people started circulating a series of accusations, Twitter outrage followed over various examples of the game’s art. When it comes to using inspiration to create sometimes nude art, he declares that it is "a deliberate anti-colonial statement by the Setting’s Black creators"
Cudicio continues, saying “I can confidently say that she has always paid due diligence to ensure that the art was an accurate and respectful portrayal of the settings, themes and inspirations”. He closes by firmly standing behind all of the Twin Drums team, and asks that we all look into some accusations before sharing them.
Find out more about The Wagadu Chronicles, which is targeting a 2023 release, at the game's official site.