NetherRealm Studios apologized on Twitter for the Injustice 2 Mobile in-game challenge rolled out to celebrate LGBTQ+ Pride Month.
Players were tasked with defeating Poison Ivy to unlock certain in-game rewards. This is nothing unusual per se, as similar challenges are held on a regular basis to motivate players to come back to the game. This particular initiative, though, seems to have backfired, as Poison Ivy, of all DC characters, is canonically known to be bisexual.
“Ah, the beloved pride celebration of repeatedly punching a barely clothed bi woman in the face,” wrote a ResetEra user reacting a promotional tweet, which has since been taken down by the studio, but forever preserved by Kotaku.
The developers clearly made an attempt to highlight DC’s LGBTQ+ characters such as Batwoman, Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy herself. Making the latter the antagonist of the Pride challenge, however, was questionable at best. Something that NetherRealm admitted in its official apology.
— Injustice 2 Mobile (@Injustice2Go) June 4, 2021
To be fair, not a lot of Twitter users, even among the LGBTQ+ community, perceived the challenge as particularly offensive. But even the most lenient ones agree that it wasn’t the strongest PR move.