In a recent interview with PC Gamer, Mike Desrosiers and Andrew Geach talk about the game's community and an apparent toxicity present. Anyone familiar with the Mordhau communities and forums could tell you how toxic they can be. Sexism and racism run rampantly throughout the platform.
Currently, the player can only play as a white male. When asked about past musings of adding character customization, such as female characters and people of color, Desrosiers and Geach explained that while they are interested in the idea, they are concerned for the response of said community.
This leads to the part everyone is unhappy about.
According to an earlier report by PC Gamer, the Triternion team stated that they may add an option to "disable" the ability to see non-white male characters in the game. So that players who would be upset by the addition can avoid seeing it. This is also stated in April by Crush, a Steam Forum officer for the Mordhau Steam Forums.
"We are still looking into adding female characters post-release as was promised, if added they will be on par with the rest of the game and implemented properly to ensure they are not a detriment to the atmosphere of the game. The voice acting especially will be crucial for this.
The realism complaint is valid, so when we add them we might add a simple client-side toggle (for both female and male characters) which would let you disable them."
Public response to this has been bad. And understandably so. A game having an option to remove all women and people of color is pretty bad and only serves to support the existing toxicity in the community. It's, by definition, a form of whitewashing.
of course, Triternion has since responded publicly to this on Twitter, claiming the following.
"We do not, nor have we ever, had plans to add a toggle to hide other ethnicities or "disable characters that arent white" in Mordhau. Any claims to the contrary are false."
This contradicts the Steam comment, as well as the report by PC Gamer.
While we can't confirm it, I would sooner believe they genuinely thought of doing the toggle idea but backpedaled when they saw how negatively the public, the non-racist public, responded to it.