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The Mario series isn't diverse enough, according to Activision Blizzard's new tool

But praises Mario for being short and round.

Following Activision Blizzard's reveal of its Diversity Space Tool, a video of a GDC 2017 presentation has resurfaced online.

In the video, presenters of the tool embarrassingly apply their findings to Nintendo's series.

Apparently the game lacks diversity in ability and sexual orientation, as the characters aren't disabled and are all presumed straight. How you can tell someone's sexual orientation just by looking at them is beyond me.

However, the presenters do praise the fact the brothers are Italian, which allows their position on the tool's graph to be a little more "out there" - whatever that means.

They also praise the age range (apparently Toad and Toadette are children, which is surely an assumption just because they're short), as well as body type because Mario is short and "rounded".

The video has been shared on social media, with one user commenting "this shit is genuinely hysterical".

When Activision Blizzard revealed the tool over the weekend, the blog post does note development started in 2016, but it has been beta tested over the past few months.

This video from 2017 suggests it's been in use (or at least tested) for longer than that.

The tool has been heavily criticised by the industry, notably by Activision Blizzard's own staff. Overwatch 2 senior game designer Dylan Snyder said his team had not used the tool as they hadn't even heard of it.

Overwatch character artist Melissa Kelly described it as a "creepy dystopian chart", while others online have noted it diminishes diversity to a checklist.

Judging by the laughable video, that's certainly the case.

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About the Author

Ed Nightingale avatar

Ed Nightingale

News reporter

Ed is Reporter at Eurogamer, with an interest in streaming, people and communities, and giving a voice to marginalised people.


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