Earlier today a Twitter user posted a fan-made campaign video for US Republican candidate Donald Trump. A vague riff on the Mass Effect universe, it was a fairly amateuristic piece of Trump worship that no one would have paid much attention to, had Trump not retweeted it himself.
That naturally lead to the video going viral and, eventually, staff at studio Bioware and publisher EA catching wind of it. Mass Effect 3 designer Manveer Heir was among the first to speak out about the video, claiming it was “gross as hell“.
“I love the idea that Trump may think he’s the Illusive Man, who is verifiably the bad guy in the game,” Heir added later.
EA eventually intervened, and the offending tweet from Trump was removed (though it remains available on the creator’s account). In a statement sent to Game Informer, the publisher was curt. “The video was an unauthorized use of our IP,” a rep told the website. “We do not support our assets being used in political campaigns.”
It’s well within EA’s rights: the video heavily featured music from the series, as well as voice work contributed by Martin Sheen to Mass Effect 2. There’s no proof that Trump or his people had any hand in the creation of the video either. Indeed, it’s highly unlikely given its content.