Valve Changes Artifact Card Name After Social Media Pointed Out Its Unfortunate Connotation

Valve Changes Artifact Card Name After Social Media Pointed Out Its Unfortunate Connotation

Ummm.

Artifact, Valve's upcoming Dota 2 card game, announced that it has renamed a card revealed on Wednesday after some uncomfortable connotations arose with its name and how it functioned. The card formerly called "Crack the Whip" has been renamed "Coordinated Assualt."

On Wednesday, Artifact's Twitter account began revealing some cards that will be available when Artifact comes out. One card was called "Crack the Whip" and it's some kind of modification card. However, the problem was mainly with its description. "Crack the Whip" lets player "Modify a black hero with 'After you play a black card, give this hero and its allied neighbors +2 Attack this round.'" Pay attention to the bolded words.

Who missed this one?

Now in this case "Black heroes" refers to an Artifact card class and not race. But the association of whips and specifically black heroes led commenters on social media to highlight the unfortunate association with history, specifically regarding slavery in North America and how the whip has come to become a symbol of the brutality under the United States slavery system. Many on Twitter responded that maybe this wasn't such a good look for the card, regardless of intention.

Two days later Artifact’s Twitter account announced the card has been renamed and all’s well that ends well I suppose. However, it does say something that this passed by Artifact’s development team. Even if it doesn’t have anything to do with race it took social media just a few days to see what’s wrong with the card combo whereas it appears to have bypassed Valve completely.

Artifact is Valve’s upcoming trading card game based on Dota 2. It is Valve’s first game in quite a few years and we had a chance to play Artifact at PAX West. For more check, out our Artifact guide for the latest news.

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Matt Kim

News Editor

Matt Kim is a former freelance writer who's covered video games and digital media. He likes video games as spectacle and is easily distracted by bright lights or clever bits of dialogue. He also once wrote about personal finance, but that's neither here nor there.

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