Blizzard’s Overwatch is known for having characters from different ethnicities and background. Fans are sensitive about cultural appropriation because how it’s portrayed in video games. Offense hero Pharah appears to hail from Egypt. Pharah thunderbird skin gives us some insights on her heritage. Her mother Ana is Egyptian and Pharah father is from the Pacific Northwest coast.
Pharah backstory is her real name is Fareeha Amari and is a security officer. Pharah is armed with jetpack-equipped combat suit and wields a Rocket Launcher. She wears Eye of Horus tattoo on her right eye which symbolize being egyptian. Abilities of Pharah such as Jump Jets, Concussive Blast, Hover and Rocket Barrage. Pharah wants to follow in her mother footsteps.
There is a open letter to Jeff Kaplan from Video Game Writer Dia Lacina. I will added some key part of the letter and folks who want to read click on the link. “Ok, so Pharah is clearly Egyptian, that’s her heritage. And as much as you have no idea what it means to be Egyptian, you are also completely out of your depth when it comes to indigeneity”. “Can we finally be honest about something? You never intended for Pharah to be Native. It was a late stage decision after you’d seen the costume, after you’d seen blowback from the costume, after you’d seen plenty of people saying “Oh wouldn’t it be cool if Pharah was part Native?” “You could have explored that. You could have gone beyond the orientalist Ancient Egypt tropes”.
“There is so much potential vitality in the core of Pharah as she was. You didn’t have to meddle. I never asked for Pharah’s Thunderbird and Raindancer skins to be removed. But I also didn’t want you to try and make them OK. I wanted an apology: a sincere recognition that you had no idea what you were doing, shouldn’t have done it, and were going to move forward and let this be a teaching moment.”
Lacina is clearly offended by Pharah Native background. People respect their culture and don’t want to be tranish. Racism still goes on today and what need diversity in video games. Let just say a video game characters is Japanese and later on find out to be half African American. Japanese character dress like a street thug for a skin from the projects. Will people be offended by this and I don’t forget the Mario Odyssey mexican outfit scandal. Overwatch developers want diversity like The Oscars and carefully not to offend anyone of ethic backgrounds.