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Subnautica Sound Designer Fired For Making 'Hateful Statements'

The designer behind Subnautica's audio is no longer part of the Unknown Worlds crew.

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Though many players are enjoying the charms of developer Unknown Worlds' open-world underwater survival title Subnautica, others are getting first wind of a scandal that has resulted in one company employee getting fired.

As reported by several outlets like Rolling Stone and Kotaku, game fans discovered a number of disparaging remarks after diving into the Twitter account of sound designer Simon Chylinski, who reportedly has a history of posting insensitive and often offensive tweets. Many of the posts were centered around racial concerns or made jokes about the likes of gender diversity in gaming.

In addition to what most people would generally consider trolling, at least one post made by Chylinski was made in response to a poll posted by game director Charlie Cleveland, which asked whether users would rather the developers add the option to play as a woman or instead improve the core game.

Chylinski also had a number of other insensitive posts, including ones that made demeaning remarks about immigration, colonialism, the transgendered, and even promoters of "SJW logic." Naturally, when unearthed, these statements didn't set well with Unknown Worlds, who decided to let Chylinski go. Charlie Cleveland himself confirmed the story to Kotaku, giving the following statement:

"Over the weekend we discovered that one of our team members had made many hateful statements online that are against our company values. After discussing the matter with him, we decided to stop working with him immediately.”

Despite the disappointment felt by a number of fans of the game and studio, Subnautica still seems to be a considerable success. The Unknown Worlds team has been working on the title since as far back as 2014, with the game hitting Early Access in December. It earned its full release on PC on Steam just two weeks ago, and it's expected to be landing on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One sometime in the future.

Guides Editor

Kevin Tucker is a long-time gamer and writer with an eye for technological news and a drive for extensive research. When he's not off exploring virtual worlds, he spends his time working on motorcycles, reading science fiction, and playing electric bass.

From The Chatty

  • reply
    February 7, 2018 1:30 PM

    Kevin Tucker posted a new article, Subnautica Sound Designer Fired For Making 'Hateful Statements'

    • reply
      February 7, 2018 1:45 PM

      bye felicia

    • reply
      February 7, 2018 1:46 PM

      That poll looks gross as hell. It isn’t an either/or choice.

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        February 7, 2018 1:50 PM

        Yeah that’s what I’d call a typical inflammatory gamer argument starter. Oh well, indie games. Won’t be the last time we hear something like this.

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        February 7, 2018 2:08 PM

        it is when you're talking about development time but yeah I suppose it looks bad without context

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          February 7, 2018 3:14 PM

          It’s a list of priorities. Framing it as an either/or is probably intentional to pick fights with anyone who wants equality. Especially when it’s one specific option versus the vague notion of improving the core gameplay experience.

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          February 7, 2018 3:36 PM

          Any game that has more than 1 bit of information has choices that arent either/or, come on.
          It doesn't "look bad without context", it was a false dilemma posted on a public forum to make a political point.



      • reply
        February 7, 2018 2:32 PM

        I'd believe that it was a case of poor wording rather than some sort of political anti-woman statement. Don't know how big their development team is, but clearly not all their fans care about being able to play as a woman, and it might be an either/or situation economically speaking.

      • reply
        February 7, 2018 4:28 PM

        Charlie Cleveland deleted the tweet and apologized for it. He said he wishes the game's protagonist had just been female from the beginning.

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        February 7, 2018 4:32 PM

        I think it was meant as "which one should we focus on first?"

      • Zek
        reply
        February 7, 2018 4:36 PM

        I think it was meant in earnest, but yeah the phrasing is very shitty and makes it sound like a snide remark.

    • reply
      February 7, 2018 2:22 PM

      I'm a little confused, what exactly did Chylinski post in response to the poll in the image?

      • reply
        February 7, 2018 2:49 PM

        Yeah, rough article. Details here https://kotaku.com/subnautica-dev-fired-over-hateful-statements-1822746373

        • reply
          February 7, 2018 6:26 PM

          It wouldn't have been worthwhile to post a lot of his tweets verbatim, just figured the highlights would serve the purpose without diving into specific vitriolic comments

          • reply
            February 7, 2018 6:28 PM

            It may have, see the folks in this thread focusing on the poll, and not the really ugly stuff that this article is about.

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          February 7, 2018 7:31 PM

          This article is definitely better at providing context that's important.

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        February 7, 2018 4:04 PM

        per the link above, specifically: “we need a ‘diversity’ slider in the options. It will make the character progessively [sic] darker more feminie [sic] and less sexy.”

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      February 7, 2018 2:24 PM

      Reasons to not have an online presence 101. What a moron

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      February 7, 2018 3:24 PM

      Wait, the person fired WASN'T the person that made the poll? They should go too imo, what a stupid tweet.

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        February 7, 2018 4:42 PM

        That poll is bad and he should feel bad.

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        February 7, 2018 4:53 PM

        he runs the company so a little hard to do that

        i do not think he meant any malice either , Charlie is a good dude who actually wanted the character to have gender options originally but focused on other parts of the game

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        February 7, 2018 6:24 PM

        He's the guy that announced Chylinski was let go, oddly enough

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      February 7, 2018 4:22 PM

      heh what the fuck!! what's wrong with a little humor!

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        February 7, 2018 6:29 PM

        Yeah, suggesting a "diversity slider" is hilarious.

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      February 7, 2018 6:44 PM

      To answer the poll.....it depends, can you build kitchens in the game?

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      February 7, 2018 6:59 PM

      I wonder how this works when they get a new job. Will someone tell their new employer about this and get them canned again?

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        February 7, 2018 7:01 PM

        It's not hard for HR to google your name and then it appear more than once in all these gaming news articles.

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        February 7, 2018 7:04 PM

        As a matter of fact my company HR contracts to another company that compiles a Social Media report on applicants. You have to sign a waiver or something saying you're ok with them doing it and saying no pretty much puts your application at the bottom of the tray. That is not the bottom of the pile, but under the tray, which sits on top of the trash can. Not the recycling bin. Though in my county all trash gets sorted by laborers anyways to pull recyclables that end up in the trash.

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          February 7, 2018 7:25 PM

          Just another reason to completely stay off Twitter and social media in general. I prefer to make potential employers and the NSA work HARD and do their fucking job in order to spy on me.

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      February 7, 2018 7:29 PM

      The poll has almost nothing to do with the article other than the guy replied to it.

      I don't understand why anyone has a problem with the poll? Subnautica was made by a small team wasn't it? Everything takes time. You have to make tradeoffs everywhere.

      Sounds like people that are upset by the poll are just looking for reasons to be upset because there's no actual quotes of the remarks that Chylinski made.

    • ArB
      reply
      February 7, 2018 7:55 PM

      This guy was also involved in Charlize Theron's car crash on the set of Boogie Nights. The whole damn hollywood landscape is falling apart.