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Playtonic to ditch JonTron from Yooka-Laylee following anti-immigrant comments

"We deeply regret any implied association."

Yooka-Laylee developer Playtonic is removing the vocal performance of YouTube personality Jon "JonTron" Jafari, who plays a bit part in the game, after he made a series of inflammatory comments about immigrants and people of colour.

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Jon 'JonTron' Jafari.

Jafari recently expressed a multitude of bigoted sentiments, first on Twitter, then in an interview with streamer Steven "Destiny" Bonnell. Over the course of this two-hour talk, Jafari claimed that Mexicans were trying to conquer American land, wealthy black people commit more crimes than poor white people, and that Black Lives Matter was a violent movement.

"No other nation would voluntarily change its demographics" he said in reference to controversy over US immigration policy. "Nobody wants to become a minority in their own country."

Jafari, who is half Iranian, half Hungarian himself, later backtracked on some of these views, saying "I wasn't prepared for a debate of this sort with these sort of sensitive topics at hand."

"I said a bunch of stuff that could be misconstrued in all sorts of ways," he added, without addressing his most outlandish statements.

Playtonic strongly disagreed with Jafari's views and decided to sever ties with the YouTube star.

"In light of his recent personal viewpoints we have made the decision to remove JonTron's inclusion in the game via a forthcoming content update," the studio said in a statement to GamesIndustry.biz.

"We would like to make absolutely clear that we do not endorse or support JonTron's personal viewpoints and that, as an external fan contributor, he does not represent Playtonic in any capacity," the developer added.

"Playtonic is a studio that celebrates diversity in all forms and strives to make games that everyone can enjoy. As such, we deeply regret any implied association that could make players feel anything but 100 per cent comfortable in our game worlds, or distract from the incredible goodwill and love shown by our fans and Kickstarter backers."

Yooka-Laylee will launch 11th April on PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac and Linux, with a Switch version to follow later this year.

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