A fuzzy uproar is brewing around a new Call of Duty skin, with an artist accusing Activision Blizzard and, by extension, Call of Duty: Vanguard creator Raven Software of plagiarizing their work. Raven Software has since removed the alleged plagiarism, the Floof Fury Tracer Pack, from both its social media and YouTube channels. Mention of the skin has also been removed from Raven’s blog post about the pack, as noted by Polygon. (opens in new tab)
Artist Sail Lin posted (opens in new tab) a comparison and explanation of how the skin pack and their art are similar across different sites. Both depict an (adorable) bipedal Samoyed dog in military style outfit with an extremely similar shemagh scarf, a slung back open-frame weapon stock and a belt pouch. Both the art and the model are done in a similar color palette, with a similarly cut overcoat and wide trousers.
“I’m the original artist whose upcoming CoD Vanguard Samoyed skin has been plagiarized,” Sail Lin said via Twitter (opens in new tab)“Although I am a CoD player, I am very disappointed to see my work being plagiarized in this way by a large company like Activision. I have reached out to Activision for clarification and/or compensation and hopefully the situation will be resolved soon .”
I need to explain this issue, COD Vanguard Samoye skin plagiarism.https://t.co/ltHTSNhEtf #CallofDutyVanguard #COD #Vanguard @Activision pic.twitter.com/OD2M4WNUmsJuly 29, 2022
Artist Sail Lin first posted their military dog on artstation (opens in new tab) in December 2019 under the name “Samoye Medical” as part of a series of military dogs called The Dog Army. It also includes designs such as a bulldog riot officer and doberman pinscher marksdog.
The Loyal Samoyed skin, part of the Floof Fury pack, are skins for the Call of Duty operator character Kim Tae Young. They’re strange for a military shooter, but no stranger than recent additions like The Terminator and Die Hard skins.
Major game publishers are no strangers to art plagiarism issues. Quality control at outsourced art studios has led to similar issues in the past, even for big names like Magic: The Gathering (opens in new tab) and The Elder Scrolls Online (opens in new tab). In any case, it’s a good sign that the offensive material has at least been removed from social media.
Tech With Brains has contacted Activision Blizzard for comment.