- I just want to preface this by saying this will be my last words on this subject. I've been overwhelmed with so much surrounding this project, both negative and positive, and it's important for my health and for the future of Rolled Out that I move on and keep myself moving forward.
- RafaKnight initially contacted us expressing interest in working on the game. Irresponsibly, I jumped onto the offer instantly, asking her if she could try her hand at one of our characters, so we could see her take. She stated she was uninterested in any monetary compensation, but I offered to compensate her regardless. We brought her into our development channel.
- After that point, we had an internal discussion in which she misgendered our character - which was fine! We corrected her, and were understanding, as we had been with others before. However, this proceeded to spur on discussions in which she repeatedly requested we change our approach to our character design even after we stated that we were happy with our original designs.
- This made some of my non-binary friends a little uncomfortable, so we decided to do some background research on the new artist we'd introduced to our team; this is something we should have done beforehand.
- We found that she had created and displays on her page, questionable and sexually provocative artworks of characters who are canonically minor (aged up in the pictures), which further increased general discomfort of our development team. At this point, absolutely no money or work had exchanged hands. RafaKnight had not given us any files. We were still testing the waters, to see if she was right for our team. She had been in our server for about 3 days at this point.
- After careful consideration, we decided that we did not want our game to be associated with the artworks she had previously created, and that we would not be requiring her artistic services. I offered to compensate her for her time spent on the project, as I did not want her to feel as though she had wasted her time.
- At this point, RafaKnight proceeded to debate with me for two hours, insisting that our reasoning for letting her go was faulty, and suggesting that we were punishing her rather than simply deciding that she was not the appropriate fit for our artistic vision.
- Last night I tweeted out a response to RafaKnight's accusatory and libelous tweets directed towards myself and my team. I felt the need to explain the truth behind our decision to let her go, publicly.
- After that, a friend of RafaKnight's contacted me, asking me to explain the situation in greater detail (which was somewhat understandable as Twitter is not a great forum for discussion and explanation). I accepted their request as I was happy to explain myself with more clarity, assuming that they were truly prepared to listen. They said to me that Rafaknight would remove her tweets if I posted a public apology. I felt cornered. RafaKnight is an established artist with a large fan base. And for me, all of this attention as an indie developer is brand new and somewhat overwhelming. I just wanted to put an end to something that I felt had been blown way out of proportion. [ https://files.catbox.moe/1tznxx.png ]
- I wrote what I felt was a fair apology, which I did earnestly mean. They did not accept it. I was told to rephrase it several times until it evolved into an apology that I felt was untrue and unfair to myself and my team. [ https://files.catbox.moe/9571sg.png ]
- [ https://files.catbox.moe/qmrdgh.png]
- Still, I posted it. At this point I was tired and terrified about what she could do to my project, with her fan base and influence. I deleted my QRT chain explaining the situation from my perspective. I shouldn't have, because it was the truth. And this is me, again, telling everyone the entire truth, whether RafaKnight approves of it or not.
- I do believe she deserved an apology. I would never want to make anyone feel so misunderstood. But I was bullied into writing something demonstrably untrue, which I now feel was a deliberate attempt at making me look like a bad person.
- I will admit that it was unfair of me to ask her to step down from the project without talking to her beforehand about why. I should have handled that better, and I'm learning a lot about all of this as I go.
- However, I think it's far more unfair to attempt to use one's status as a well-known artist to so deeply misrepresent the reasoning behind their departure.
- Ultimately, our game is a passion project, done by a group of friends, who want to make a fun videogame. We aren't professionals. And our team isn't a business. As many of my friends were not comfortable with her, and we had not signed any contracts or received any work from her, we tried our best to part ways with her on amicable terms with the understanding that sometimes people just aren't right for each other; she wasn't the right artist for our vision, and we weren't the right group of people for her, either.
- RafaKnight, we're sorry you felt this was unfair, or that we betrayed you. I'm very new to game development, and very new to this sudden spotlight that is being shone on me. A lot has happened that I haven't known exactly how to deal with. But I am trying my honest best to do everything right.
- I've made a lot of mistakes over the last week or two, and I will probably make more mistakes along the way. I'm only human. All I ask is that you all be patient with me, patient with my team, and understand, again, that we are all just passionate fans trying to make a great game for a passionate community. All I can do is my best, and that's what I intend to keep doing.
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