Troy Leavitt, credited as a lead designer on WB Games’ upcoming Harry Potter Hogwarts Legacy title, ran an anti-social justice and anti-feminist YouTube channel before being hired by the studio.
Back in 2020, Avalanche announced that it would be working on a new Harry Potter RPG, based on the universe established by JK Rowling. In the midst of Rowling’s on-going transphobic commentary, the studio distanced itself from the author as she continued down a path of belligerent intolerance.
Now, though, it looks like the studio has more explaining to do as it turns out lead designer Troy Leavitt, used to moonlight as a pro-Gamergate YouTuber.
Over the weekend, a series of tweets from gaming insider and commentator Liam Robertson gained momentum after he shined a light on the sort of content Leavitt had been creating.
The channel’s bread-and-butter content seemed to mostly take potshots at feminism and social justice, with video titles like “The Injustice of Social Justice”, “In Praise of Cultural Appropriation” and “Social Justice Ten Commandments” showing what sort of vibe Leavitt is all about.
The channel, inactive since 2018, defends John Lasseter – the Pixar director accused of sexual misconduct – and makes repeated jabs at Feminist Frequency’s Anita Sarkeesian (a popular target for anti-social justice trolls in gaming), as well as reducing the #MeToo movement down to simply “moral panic”.
The channel has 26,000 subs, and has amassed around 2,000,000 views – so it’s not particularly popular in the grand scheme of things.
“I’m happy to say that, even though I disclosed my YouTube channel to WB Games, it didn’t appear to be an issue for them,” said Leavitt (thanks, PC Gamer). “Not that they endorse anything that I’ve said, of course, but at least they seem more concerned with making good games than with pushing some kind of a social justice agenda, so there is hope.”
Leavitt is a games industry veteran, who mostly worked as a consultant on a number of games, including several licensed projects for Disney.
Reports from 2020 suggested that the development team at Avalanche expressed concerns about their work being tied to Rowling after she made a number of transphobic statements on Twitter.
WB Games has yet to make a comment regarding Leavitt in the wake of these revelations gaining public attention.