Fans of miHoYo’s Genshin Impact led to two hashtags, #boycottgenshimpact and #DoBetterMihoyo, evolving on Twitter on Tuesday, in what constituted mass criticism of the free-to-play gacha game. So far, the #boycottgenshinimpact tag alone has been tweeted over 12,000 times.
It all started when an unconfirmed leak about the game claimed that new content, which allegedly includes new places to explore, would be delayed. MiHoYo did not respond to a request for comment in time for publication.
Genshin Impact has not had an expansion of the site since December 2020, and although there have been updates and incidents, these grants are considered bad by the fandom. Fans are hungry for new content, so the idea of holding something back struck a chord. But despite no official confirmation, the “leak”
Hashtags became the home of what looked like years of pent-up complaints about the game. While some issues are not constant talking points with the fandom in general, they are worth repeating here just to give a sense of the amount found in the #boycottgenshinimpact. Some players raised insufficient account security in the game, which has previously been breached. Other players also discuss the portrayal of one of the game’s few darker characters. Another set of complaints drew attention to an NPC expressing romantic love for a character who appears to be a child, prompting fans to say there is pedophilia in the game.
Among all of these, a claim became the center of attention, generating a large number of retweets and responses. A Twitter user pointed out that the Hilichurls – the goblin-like common enemies in the game – were based on indigenous peoples. Soon, many players shared a clip where a developer from miHoYo could be seen using footage of indigenous people dancing as a reference for Hilichurl animations. The short highlight was part of a larger video related to the official one Genshin ImpactThe Bilibili account was launched on September 29, 2020.
Despite the call for action in the hashtag #boycottgenshinimpact, many who used the hashtag said they did not really intend to drop the game. Instead, these offended fans seduced – who often had sports Genshin Impact avatars or references to the game on their Twitter profiles – said that they simply wanted the developers to fix what some players saw as the more problematic content.
A tweet said: “#DoBetterMihoyo is more appropriate to use if you do not really intend to delete the game and it also just calls miHoYo as a company.” So fans adapt the language to the hashtag and switch to using “#dobettermihoyo” instead.
One person, who wished to remain anonymous due to the hot discourse on the Internet, told Polygon via Twitter messages that many consider Genshin Impact a “comfort” game, so the first hashtag was not entirely serious to begin with.
On Wednesday, both hashtags are still going strong, with naysayers and fans of the game continuing to discuss the benefits.