Mon. Sep 26th, 2022

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enlarge Don’t expect more cigar-chewing characters to appear in the gears matches ahead.

The following Gears 5 will not contain on-screen images or references to smoking, according to The Coalition’s developers. But the exact sequence of events that led to that decision is apparently up for debate.

The smoke-free story gained attention this weekend with a report in Variety that linked the decision to a pressure campaign by the anti-smoking lawyers at the Truth Initiative. According to Variety, The Coalition decided to remove the smoking credentials after Truth contacted Turner Broadcasting, stating Gears 5 filmed as part of an invitational tournament during his Eleague esports on weekends.

That order seems plausible, especially given that Truth is a presenting sponsor of the tournament, which is officially titled “Eleague Gears Summer Series Invitational powered by Truth.” And Truth has a long history of pressuring media companies to remove smoking credentials from their products, a move that has recently led to changes in Netflix’s youth-focused programming.

But Rod Fergusson, head of the Coalition Studio, said Truth is claiming a win it actually had no hand in. gears since day 1,” Fergusson tweeted in response to coverage of the story late Friday. “There was no smoking to remove from” Gears 4 or 5 because there was never any smoking to begin with. And as long as I’m in control, that will never happen. Sorry for the confusion.”

“My father smoked,” Fergusson added by way of further explanation in a follow-up tweet† “He died of a heart attack at age 38. I was 4.”

Before the coalition took over with Gears of War 4, the series featured a handful of prominent tobacco references under the auspices of then-developer Epic Games. For example, COG Michael Barrick is rarely shown without a signature cigar dangling from his lips.

The Weapons of War series, which has always been rated M for Mature by the ESRB, is known for containing significant amounts of violence and blood that makes on-screen smoking seem like a minor issue. But Turner Senior VP Seth Ladetsky noted to Variety that removing tobacco references doesn’t affect the nature of the game nearly as much as removing or toning down the violence. “If you remove these images, it does have an impact,” he said of the impact of the images on real smokers.

By akfire1

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