Ubisoft Allegedly Turns Deaf Ear To Esports Harassment Complaints

Apparently, it's not just internal abuse Ubisoft can't deal with properly, as pro gamer Cherna has accused the studio of failing to address online abuse in esports leagues as well.

Published: December 21, 2022 10:18 AM /


Soldiers breaching a vault in Rainbow Six Siege

Esports pro Cherna, whose real name is Danielle Andrade, has quit one of the top South American esports leagues, citing a total lack of support on Ubisoft's behalf. Cherna is a pro Rainbow Six Siege player with plenty of tournament victories under her belt, but she says playing the game as a Black woman in modern esports is "horrible".

Speaking to tech news platform Rest of World, Cherna says that despite receiving harassment from both esports fans and other players, she never received any support from Ubisoft. She also says Ubisoft failed to publicly condemn the abuses she suffered, and that Ubisoft's interest in women's esports is purely "for the diversity marketing".

While Cherna's team isn't a part of Ubisoft, the studio does claim responsibility for the organization of the pro Rainbow Six Siege league in question. Cherna says this makes it Ubisoft's responsibility to "develop diversity and inclusion initiatives" in order to improve the environment for gamers like her going forward.

A player aiming at another player from a higher floor in Ubisoft's Rainbow Six Siege
Cherna says Rainbow Six Siege leagues in Brazil are beset by abuse, but that Ubisoft isn't doing anything about it.

Rest of World says it also spoke to Cherna's fellow gamers, as well as people within the Brazilian esports community. Rodrigo Guerra, the editor of esports and tech platform The Enemy, told Rest of World that female-centered leagues are "hardly ever given the same structure" as male leagues when it comes to investment, oversight, and other important aspects of running esports leagues.

According to Rest of World, Rainbow Six Siege is well-known within Brazil as one of the most toxic games to play, especially for women and minority gamers. When Cherna was 18, she was nominated for a Brazilian esports award, which apparently caused an "immediate" backlash. Brazilian gamers suggested on social media that Cherna was a diversity inclusion and that the Brazilian gaming industry was trying to "force women players down our throats".

Ubisoft's problems dealing with harassment extend beyond its own borders

Ubisoft has been at the center of a sustained firestorm of criticism over the last two and a half years or so. It started when several top Ubisoft execs were publicly accused of abuse or of enabling abusers. They left the company, but although CEO Yves Guillemot subsequently shared a list of initiatives Ubisoft was taking to combat abuse, employees subsequently claimed not much was being done about harassment within the studio.

Well into 2022, Ubisoft employees were still claiming that the company didn't seem interested in actually addressing the problems of harassment and toxic workplace culture. The problems became so bad that a French union launched a lawsuit against Ubisoft over the harassment issue, so it's not just Brazilian esports that Ubisoft appears to have an issue with when it comes to supporting women and minority staff.

Eivor pointing towards a church, presumably to ransack it, in Assassin's Creed Valhalla
Ubisoft is best known for Assassin's Creed, other franchises like Prince of Persia, and now, for widespread allegations of toxic workplace culture.

It's worth noting that this appears to be an industry-wide issue, which is something identified by The Enemy editor Rodrigo Guerra as well. Companies like Activision Blizzard have come under fire for allegedly toxic workplace environments (although the company denies its execs knew about and ignored that culture), and other studios like Paradox and Fullbright have also been hit with similar allegations.

Cherna's story comes not long after a study that suggested up to 20% of female gamers are quitting due to rampant toxicity and abuse. Cherna herself says she'll be working to strengthen the Brazil Female Gaming Association (AFGB) so that if women suffer harassment or abuse, they can come to the organization for "mental health help and legal aid", all free of charge. It's Cherna's ambition to create an all-female esports team for AFGB, too.

We've reached out to Ubisoft for comment on this story.

Have a tip, or want to point out something we missed? Leave a Comment or e-mail us at tips@techraptor.net

Joe Allen's profile picture
| Senior Writer

Joe has been writing for TechRaptor for five years, and in those five years has learned a lot about the gaming industry and its foibles. He’s originally an… More about Joseph

More Info About This Game
Learn More About Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege
Ubisoft Montreal
Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC
Release Date
December 1, 2015 (Calendar)
Purchase (Some links may be affiliated)