Activision Blizzard Announces Tool That Measures Character Diversity

The game industry has long had a problem with diversity and there have been initiatives over the years from various studios to solve the problem. But not all efforts, while well-intentioned, are good. In a blog post, Activision Blizzard describes a decision to use a “character diversity tool that quantifies ethnicity, beauty, cognitive abilities, and other things that indicate you’re different,” one such measure that feels particularly bizarre, if not offensive.

Developed by King and MIT Game Labs, this diversity tool was designed to “create and monitor guidelines for character creation and creation.” Jacqueline Chomatas, King’s Globalization Project Manager, further explained the tool’s mission statement, saying, “The Diversity Space Tool is a measurement tool to help determine how diverse a set of character traits is and how diverse that character and cast are compared to the ‘ norm.'”