Jagex investigates streamer following allegations of abusive behaviour
Ali "Gross Gore" Larson accused of sexual harassment, verbal abuse, and physical violence during RuneFest 2018
Popular YouTube and Twitch streamer, Ali "Gross Gore" Larson, is under investigation by RuneScape developer Jagex amid allegations of inappropriate behaviour during RuneFest 2018.
Following the official RuneScape fan event, which took place near London over the weekend, multiple complaints were levelled against Larson over social media, including accusations of sexual harassment, physical violence, and verbal abuse.
A RuneScape YouTuber known as Skiddler released a statement addressing the events of Saturday evening.
Skiddler's statement includes comments Larson reportedly made to a women at the event, and an account of a physical altercation which occurred after he confronted Larson over his behaviour.
"He had sat down next to her, and repeatedly commented on her breasts, and how attractive they were," Skiddler wrote.
"She made it clear to Gross Gore that she was uncomfortable, however, he continued not only making comments, but fetched multiple people whom he was with to validate his opinion on her breasts. Rachel approached me shortly after, distraught, and left the hotel."
Regarding an altercation that occurred between me and Gross Gore on Saturday evening. I've written a statement as there are false rumours circulating. pic.twitter.com/nl0GOpbp4B— Elliot (@Skiddler) October 8, 2018
Speaking with Polygon, two female RuneFest attendees spoke of their experiences with Larson over the weekend.
"He was a nice guy, and when I saw him again later he bought me a drink and was asking about my phone screen, which is a photo of me and my boyfriend," said one women.
"He was trying to kiss me at the bar before giving me the drink. I walked away, and told everyone he tried to kiss me. I laughed it off awkwardly because I didn't really know what to do."
The next night, she reportedly had a similar incident with Larson, when he allegedly tried to kiss her.
"He saw I was super drunk, offered me another drink, which stupidly I took again because I didn't think being drunk and accepting a drink was accepting to be kissed or asked to kiss multiple times," she said.
"This was when he tried kissing me, and I dodged it. Someone yelled at him saying, 'What are you doing?' and he yelled back, 'She's my girlfriend!'"
Footage has also appeared online of Larson trying to kiss another woman, and her turning away.
Larson since responded to the growing social media frenzy, in an hour-long Twitch stream where he apologised for "if the women took offence".
"I'm going to be really realistic, and I mean no offence to the woman, no disrespect," said Larson in one of the most tone-deaf apologies of 2018. "But the woman, she was wearing a really, really, really revealing top, and that's great, we live in 2018, you can wear whatever you want.
"But people have to understand that if you're going to wear something so revealing, people will comment on it. That's life. If I drove around in a Ferrari, then people would comment on the Ferrari. That's just the way people are."
In response to the allegations against Larson, who attended RuneFest as a content creator, Jagex issued to statement to Polygon.
"Jagex is conducting an internal investigation following reports of unacceptable behaviour from RuneFest attendees," reads the statement.
"We enforce a strict code of conduct for everyone attending RuneFest, and take any matters concerning harassment or threats of any kind very seriously."
UPDATE: Jagex has issued a further statement to GamesIndustry.biz.
"With almost 2,000 people attending RuneFest this year, we thank everyone for making it a very special event in the RuneScape calendar," the firm wrote. "However, after RuneFest had finished, we were made aware of allegations concerning a small number of content creators. While the alleged incidents did not take place at the RuneFest venue or within its opening hours, the safety and wellbeing of those in and around our events is of paramount importance to us.
"Having reviewed the allegations we have found that the content creators concerned did breach our code of conduct. We do not tolerate inappropriate or offensive behaviour in any way and, while we had a limited working relationship with some of the individuals, we will not be working with them, or inviting them to future events, going forward.
"As we look towards 2019, we will strive to keep future RuneFests, and all Jagex events, safe spaces where attendees can continue to enjoy the inclusiveness and positivity that comes from being part of the RuneScape community."