Activision pulls very cute but “plagiarized” Call of Duty skin

A collage of images shows similarities between art featuring a soldier dog and a video for a Call of Duty skin.

picture: Sail Lin / Activision

call of Duty, the first-person shooter that was once based on historical events, sheds a very ahistorical skin after a concept artist accused the game’s publisher of plagiarizing a design of theirs. Hilarious and cute, the new skin featured a humanized Samoyed dog, armed and ready to murder anyone. The skin called “Loyal Samoyed” is now gone and all references in game and on the company’s website have been dematerialized.

A few weeks ago, Activision has announced some new skins in a patch update for Call of Duty: Warzone‘s fourth season “Mercenaries of Fortune”. But a skin for Operator Kim Tae Young with a very adorable dog and packaged in the “Floof Fury” skin bundle (what didn’t they call it furry?) felt a bit too familiar to artist Sail Lin. On Twitter and ArtStation, Lin accused the publisher of plagiarism and expressed disappointment since they regularly play the shooter themselves.

At that time, Lin told kotaku that they had no contact with the publisher and were unaware of the skin prior to its unveiling. kotaku has reached out to Sail Lin and Activision for further comment.

The similarities between cod‘s “Loyal Samoyed” skin and Lin’s original art “SAMOYE MEDICAL” as highlighted in the artist’s callout post on ArtStation, are too similar to deny: virtually identical profile, same backpack, scarf waist pack and elbow pads. The clothing is even essentially the same. This is hardly a generic “Fursona”. The original art is part of a set of lenses with humanized animals as soldiers. You are all very adorable. If there was a hero shooter with these guys, I don’t think I would play anything else.

In a statement to polygon, Activision apologized and said it had “the utmost respect for creativity and content creation.” The company characterizes it as a “misstep” and claims that it “regrettably […] wrong” and thus removed the skin from the game.

I wonder if I can use that excuse next time my ISP accuses me of downloading music without paying. Activision pulls very cute but “plagiarized” Call of Duty skin

Curtis Crabtree

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