Skip to main content

Former Blizzard employee claims he was fired for World of Warcraft corporate greed parody

Leadership "saw a reflection".

A former Activision Blizzard employee has claimed he was fired for writing jokes parodying corporate greed in World of Warcraft.

Blizzard scribe Eric Covington says he wrote jokes "lampooning generic corporate gree" for the game's Loot Specialist loot goblin, a character working for the in-game Venture Company.

However, Covington claims Blizzard leadership then "saw a reflection" in his words, and he was swiftly fired after nine years of service.

Dragonflight Features Overview | World of WarcraftWatch on YouTube

"I wrote jokes lampooning generic corporate greed for a Venture Company loot goblin (very in-character), but then leadership walked face first into the joke after string lock while my focus was getting the patch done," Covington wrote on Twitter.

"Because of their embarrassment, I'm no longer at Blizzard."

He continued: "No consideration or trust [was] extended to at least ask me what my intentions were for the character (Was it targeted at anyone? Nope.)

"[There was also] no polite request to let me handle it and hotfix some lines because of circumstances (I would have willingly and understandably helped)."

Some of Convington's lines include: "Time to go back to the office!", "Another record quarter for revenue!", and "Let's call this a cost-of-living adjustment".

He additionally noted that his jokes were included in marketing materials, even after he'd left the company. "They took it down after I pointed out the hypocrisy," he added.

"Nine years of service. Up in smoke without question because someone looked at an innocuous joke and saw a reflection," he concluded.

"They made sure to hustle and get me out before the end of the month in full knowledge that benefits would expire the next day."

Covington's claim comes just days after the publication of a new interview with Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick, in which Kotick claimed the company never had a "systemic issue with harassment".

Kotick also stated he wasn't anti-union, and that he believed Activision Blizzard had "an enormous amount of momentum, and... an extraordinary balance sheet." That's despite his reticence about the current economy: "I'm really scared about the economy - compensation for talent has been ratcheting up in ways that are complex for us to deal with."

Earlier this year, employees at the company were left outraged by a meeting led by Blizzard president Mike Ybarra, who discussed the slashing of profit-share bonuses and a return to office working.

Read this next