'Overwatch' comic unavailable in Russia because of homophobic law

Ho ho ho.

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Mat Smith
December 21st, 2016
'Overwatch' comic unavailable in Russia because of homophobic law

Overwatch's comic series, which attempts to add more backstory to the swathe of characters inside the team shooter, has just published its Christmas special. Alongside festive cheer, present-giving and the rest, the issue reveals that Tracer is gay. She shares a kiss with her partner after sharing presents, and that's about it. While Overwatch has insinuated that the game's cast may have more than one LGBT character, this is the first time it's been pointed out explicitly. It's all too explicit for Russia, and the country has banned the comic.

While it's not saying the reason outright, the ban is likely due to the kiss between two women, falling under "gay propaganda" aimed at minors.

As Kotaku reports, Russian Overwatch fans can see the cover, but cannot click through. Instead they get a huge warning box outlining that the comic isn't available "in accordance with Russian law", although it doesn't mention the specific law outright. The government can fine, imprison and deport anyone who flouts this -- a rule that also covers public demonstrations or speeches.

Blizzard hasn't yet responded to our request for comment on the issue, but we'll update here when we hear back.

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