World of Warcraft star Daniel ‘Jokerd’ Gobey has been released from Method’s streaming team for “offensive” actions during a raid on of the game’s US servers, just 15 days after first signing with the esports organization.
Jokerd rose to prominence in the Twitch community after he became the first player to hit level 60 on Blizzard’s release of WoW Classic, outpacing a number of Method’s top stars to reach the pinnacle of the early game on his gnome mage.
After a well-received face reveal, a number of IRL streams, and of course a hefty helping of WoW grinding – which at one point saw the Maltese gamer delete his famous mage account – it seemed Jokerd was destined to rise.
Just two weeks after signing with World of Warcraft’s largest esports and streaming roster, however, he has been punted by the US organization following “offensive and unsportsmanlike behavior” during a Molten Core raid in Classic.
During the raid on his non-native US server, Jokerd was given the opportunity to ‘ninja,’ which basically equates to stealing from the group, a Staff of Dominance, one of the rarest and most powerful rewards for defeating Ragnaros.
“They think I care about my reputation on a f*cking American server,” the WoW star said, right before claiming the staff as his own reward, leaving the raid party’s voice chat, and running away from the end-game area for the Molten Core.
After the incident, Jokerd went on to explain that he believed what he had done was the right thing for not only his character, but also for his raid group ‘Power.’
“Do you think there’s a chance that you will get kicked out of Power for this?” Jokerd read from his chat, and revealed he thought his greedy move wouldn’t mean he was booted from his ‘Power’ raid group. Instead, he said he expected a promotion.
“I’m going to get promoted to officer in Power because of this. There was a member of Power in this raid, George, and he instantly told the rest of them what he did and you know what they said? “‘Nice one! Good job, f*ck yeah! Congrats Jokerd,’ they said, because it’s an upgrade to Power.
“Power just became stronger for me ninjaing. Think about it for a second, if you’re Power. Do you want some random guy to get Staff of Dominance? F*ck no! You want someone in Power to get more powerful, and guess what? That’s what happened.”
Despite Jokerd seeming quite convinced by his own explanation for his actions, Method didn’t see what he had done in quite the same light.
Hours after the story was told from another raid member’s perspective on Reddit, the organization released Gobey from the stream team, and announced the world’s first WoW Classic level 60 star was suspended “pending investigation.”
“Method has been made aware of the situation that recently occurred involving Method streamer and WoW Classic influencer Jokerd,” Method’s general manager Shanna ‘Darrie’ Roberts said in a statement from the org.
“In response to Jokerd's actions, we have removed him effective immediately from our Twitch Team, and he has been suspended from Method pending further investigation into the future of his contract.”
“On behalf of Method, I want to apologize to our fans, sponsors, and community. We feel let down by his behavior, just as many of you are.”
At Method, we're all about World Firsts. So this? It just makes sense!
A huge welcome to @Jokereed! We're thrilled to have him on board. Help us give him a warm welcome to the team!https://t.co/r51HylMTXr pic.twitter.com/SVDi9K5jwu
— Method (@Method) October 30, 2019
While Method may have dropped Jokerd from their streaming team for his actions, and the community is in an uproar over another dramatic case of ninjaing during the Classic raid, not everyone saw the incident in a poor light.
WoW superstar Asmongold, who himself has faced drama surrounding ninja-looting mechanics in the past, praised Jokerd for what he had done, and delivered a rousing applause for the Maltese gamer during his November 13 broadcast.
“Hey, listen, yo, my man!” Asmongold said as he revealed a photo of himself and Gobey that they had taken together at TwitchCon. “It’s not like he’s aim-botting and pulling a Jarvis. No, that’s not what he’s done at all.”
That was, until Jokerd poked fun at Olympus, Zack’s own raid group. “Okay, this is some bullshit. No one makes fun of Olympus,” Asmon said with a laugh, drawing a cross over Jokerd’s face in their TwitchCon image. “That’s too far.”
For now, Jokerd’s future with Method is in the hands of the organization’s internal investigation. Considering the public outcry, however, it looks like the WoW Classic star might be banking on that Power promotion soon than he thought.