In a strange—but certainly well-meaning—series of posts today, the Gears Of War Twitter account engaged in an extended tribute to Black History Month, which, despite being entirely off the mark timewise, was kind of nice in its own way.
Now, we’ll be the first to admit we were initially confused when the account posted its first tweet this morning depicting the Delta Squad sitting around a fire alongside text informing us that “It’s Black History Month!” Of course, this isn’t accurate. Black History Month was in February, as it is every year. This doesn’t change.
Still, this is a helpful statement of support for the African American community and a clear win for diversity and inclusion in the gaming world. We just wish The Coalition had done a little more research before launching this seemingly wide-ranging social media campaign.
The post raises some serious questions, too. Does this mean Black History Month exists in the Gears Of War universe? And that picture they posted of the GoW character Augustus Cole holding his fist up in the air with a speech bubble that simply said, “Let’s go, African Americans!”—that definitely felt a little off, right? Maybe? Then again, the more we think about it, the more it seems like their hearts are in the right place, and that should count for something.
On the other hand, it seems like they have an entire month of tweets planned for this, so you would really expect them to do a bit more due diligence on this. One of the tweets that went out recently thanked George Washington Carver for inventing peanut butter, which is actually a common misconception about his legacy that could have been corrected with a simple web search.
But, listen, everyone makes mistakes, so we aren’t going to hold this one against them. Plus, we have to give the developers props for the in-depth thread they posted this afternoon about the cultural history of Seneca Falls. Now, this doesn’t have much to do with Black History Month—it’s more of a women’s suffrage thing. But, hey, they seem like they’re trying their best over there, and women’s rights are good, too!
We don’t want to be overly hard on them because you never want to discourage people from making positive gestures like these. They totally whiffed it here, that’s certain, but they are trying, and that is definitely more than some other game companies are doing.
So, a tip of the hat to the social media team at Gears Of War. Whatever you wanted to do here, we salute you!