Playtonic Studios has decided to drop Jon “JonTron” Jafari from its cast of voice actors for Yooka-Laylee. The move follows a controversy the popular YouTuber kicked up last week by expressing support for far-right views on immigrants and ethno-nationalism.
“JonTron is a talented video presenter who we were initially, two years ago, happy to include as a voice contributor in our game,” a Playtonic representative told GI.biz. “However, in light of his recent personal viewpoints we have made the decision to remove JonTron’s inclusion in the game via a forthcoming content update.
“We would like to make absolutely clear that we do not endorse or support JonTron’s personal viewpoints and that, as an external fan contributor, he does not represent Playtonic in any capacity. Playtonic is a studio that celebrates diversity in all forms and strives to make games that everyone can enjoy.
“As such, we deeply regret any implied association that could make players feel anything but 100% comfortable in our game worlds, or distract from the incredible goodwill and love shown by our fans and Kickstarter backers.”
Jafari first became involved with Yooka-Laylee when in 2015 he tweeted excitement over the game, a spiritual successor to Banjo-Kazooie. Playtonic responded by asking Jafari to voice a character in the game, and he accepted the offer.
The YouTuber’s part in the game is believed to have been small, though neither he nor Playtonic has to date revealed which character he had lent his pipes to.
Trouble began brewing for Jafari last week when he responded to U.S. Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa)’s controversial statement that “We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”
“Wow, how scandalous,” tweeted Jafari in reference to King, “Steve King doesn’t want his country invaded by people who have contempt for his culture and people! NAZI!!!”
Later, he doubled down during a video segment, suggesting the existence of a Mexican movement to take control of the United States through mass immigration.
Yooka-Laylee is scheduled for release on April 11 on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and PC.