Resident Evil 5 Producer Slams Racism Charges

Most gamers will recall the race controversy sparked by the Resident Evil 5 trailer released at E3 2007. Set in Africa,  the trailer showed a white protagonist mowing down hordes of black zombie villagers.

As the long-awaited game draws closer to its March, 2009 U.S. launch, CVG serves up an interview with Capcom’s Masachika Kawata, an RE5 producer who says his team had no racial agenda in the game design:

We chose Africa [as RE5’s setting] because we’re extending the storyline logically. Following the tradition of the Resident Evil franchise, you’ll remember from Code Veronica – the Progenitor virus comes from Africa so we wanted to go back to the root of where the virus originated.


For the people who think it’s racist… well, we can’t please everyone. We’re in the entertainment business – we’re not here to state our political opinion or anything like that. It’s unfortunate that some people felt that way.

We’ve gone where the story has taken us…

Via: Edge Online



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  1. Dragunov765 says:

    I don’t seem to recall the KKK protesting as hundreds of white people were gunned down in all the other Resident Evil games (and movies…)

  2. anonymoot says:

    Okay I just made an account so I can say this: No matter where I go I hear the same things.

    I’m a black guy so yes I know how it is to be black. Most of have no connection to individuals such as Croal. Notice something? We don’t talk about games! We also don’t go into the business of game design often. Do you know why? It’s semi-crappy job and it brings no progress for us. I myself used to have a desire to be a game designer but I chose to become a computer engineer/programmer because I know it’s a better use of my talent.


    You heard it from a real brotha!

  3. Wimblesaurus says:

    Are you being sarcastic?  I sure hope so.

    Most Japanese have very, very little knowledge of geography outside of their homeland (kinda like Americans), but most Japanese love everything foreign.

    If you had said, say, the Chinese or Koreans, maybe your arguement would carry a little more weight.

    No, Luke, I AM the Walrus

  4. Father Time says:

    I wouldn’t say the slaves were treated, well even if it was better compared to Africa (if I were to take your word for it). The lesser of two evils is still evil.


    "What for you bury me in the cold cold ground?" – Tasmanian devil

  5. Benjamin_Snow says:

    I find it sad that my people would like to pull the race card on anything that is "against" blacks.  Am I the only black man in the world who have the the common sense to know the following:


    1.  Zombies and nercomancing is part of the original African culture?

    2. See above.


    How could this be racist? Africans where the one who created the myths of zombies!

    "We may be human, but we’re still animals" -Steve Vai (World’s greatest guitarist!)

  6. Doomsong says:

    The only way I can even see a valid complaint of racism in this game, is if the complainers are in fact not only african… but also zombies themselves.

    In this case: We in the gaming community add our deepest appologies for the subject matter in Resident Evil 5, and thank you for pointing out the deep racism that stems in this title. However, we must point out that being of the undead persuasion yourselves, you have no say in the dealings of the living. Furthermore, we have noted your location as a hotbed for zombie-terrorist activity, and will be sending a government task force to neutralize the threat within a few days.

    Thank you.

  7. finaleve says:

    I think its racist because Africans can’t be zombies…/sarcasm

    Poor white people.  Always getting the T-Virus because we are politically at fault.

  8. DeepThorn says:

    Well, it is okay to be proud of your heritage, just as long as people are not thinking they are earned something because their great to the 5th power grandfather was the slave of someone.  That is history, the slave owner’s great… grandchild is not in any way at fault of what happened because it was not them that "owned" the slave, AND statistical data and records have proven that most slaves were treated very well in fact.  Given a lot better living situations and great treatment by their "owners" and given a better chance to live than if they would have stayed in Africa.

    It is perfectly fine to be proud of heritage, and if it is the right thing, then race.  I wouldn’t say I am proud to be white because of Edison or Ford, I would say I am proud to be an American because of them, but if someone was proud to be black because of the fact that the African American society is finally starting to weed out everyone pulling out the race card and asking for handouts when not needed, then I can understand that.  The amount of success in those areas are amazing as of late.  It would be nice to see more white trash quit asking for hand outs when it isnt needed.  Too many freakin people live off of the government when they are perfectly capable of working.

    Pretty much all of my prejustice is based off of statistical data though.  So it isn’t really racism per say…  Certiain races are most likely to be rapist, others murders, others thives, and so on.  Once you figure that into the population ratio of the different groups in the area you live in, you can get a pretty good judgement of people, and even predict events before they happen.  Certain weather increases difference likelihoods of different events as well. 

    Like I can statistically tell you someone is going to almost cause a wreak before the end of the week in my travels to work.  There is a 40% a white house wife driving a car worth over $40,000, 40% chance they will be black driving a car worth less than $10,000, 5% chance it will be a mexican driving a utility/work truck of some sort, 10% chance that it will be a teenager, and 5% chance it will be someone else.  I have learned this over the past 2 years.  Hell over the last month, I have had 8 house wives driving BMWs, Mercedes,Lexus, a Bentley, and Jaguars.  Today I was right next to someone maybe 2 feet further back if you would compare the noses of the cars, and the black chick turned right into me, luckily there was no oncoming traffic.  I just live around a lot of bad drivers…  people too poor to car about their cars and would drive off, which they do, if they get in a crash, or so rich that they dont care because their husbands will pay for the car to get fixed.  Given the last month though, it is most likely going to be one of the less normal 20%.

    It is all good information to know to prevent the likelihood of getting into a crash.  It may only slightly help, but every little bit helps.

  9. A-wel Cruiz says:

    I think Yahtzee put it best in his original Zero Punctuation for The Escapist:

    "Capcom has rather shot themselves in the foot by making the peasants this time around being African, thus prompting the demented honking from the politically-correct. In our admittedly weak defense of Capcom, Resident Evil 4 wasn’t any less racist, really, what with all the Spaniard murdering and characters un-ironically using the expression ‘ay yai yai’. But poverty-stricken Africans are a somewhat different kettle of fish to greasy mainland Europeans. Still, the games are made by the Japanese, and everyone knows what a bunch of xenophobic dicks they are (irony)."


    *I’d argue with Jack Thompson, but it’s just easier to call him an idiot.*

  10. Shadow Darkman Anti-Thesis of Jack Thompson says:

    I think we noticed that.



  11. Austin_Lewis says:

    Thank God Kawata had the balls to deliver a concise ‘we don’t care, we’re not here to please everyone’ message.

  12. Lucid says:

    I really think the title of this article is misleading. Kawata hardly "Slammed" the charges. That infers he had harsh criticism of the charges and/or those that laid them. His words do nothing of the sort.

  13. ZippyDSMlee says:

    exsercbates issues becuse people "can not get over it" theya re forced to look at illogical crap and be made live around it….

    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=
    (in need of a bad overhaul)

  14. Aliasalpha says:

    People really need to get a thicker skin and toughen the fuck up. During school I was a combination of the fat kid and computer nerd so I was abused pretty constantly (though uncreatively). I’ve also been suffering from depression for 15 years so I’ve been insuled by a genuinely creative and educated professional, ME. Much like with a vaccination, you build up an immunity by exposure. Nowdays when people try to insult them I encourage them to come up with something creative and laugh when their inferior minds can’t.

    If someone is feeling deeply insulted because their skin colour happens to be the same as the enemies in a computer game, this is a sign that they have not been insulted enough and I am more than happy to assist them should they desire…


  15. Father Time says:

    "I am equally racist against against all races, actually more so against my own."


    I myself am a member of the Jillete/Carlin school of thought (I call it that because that’s where I first learned it).

    Mainly ‘circumstances of birth are nothing more than random and should never be a source of pride or shame’.

    Basically I don’t give a fuck what color you or I are and I think anyone who says that they have [insert race here] pride or anyone who says ‘I’m proud to be [insert race here]’ is a fool.


    "What for you bury me in the cold cold ground?" – Tasmanian devil

  16. Father Time says:

    They say they think it’s racist because it brings back horrible memories of their black ancestry, which I say is completely stupid for 3 reasons.

    1.None of them have ever had to relive the horrible history this game ‘reminds’ them of. It would be like me saying white on white violence reminds me of the Civil war, or a whole bunch of other wars I can spout off. But even if, a game that lets you recreate history isn’t racist, even if it lets you be a full fledged nazi.

    2. The history they cite was a bunch of white guys killing blacks for power or land or whatever, this is one guy vs. hordes of zombies fighting for survival.

    3. There is nothing, absolutely nothing in the trailers that says that you should look at this in a historic context. If you want to look at it through ancient history glasses, that’s your fault and your decision. Saying it’s racist because it appears racist when you look at it in an unintended way is simply bullshit. It’s set in modern times, not colonization.

    But they’ll still act as if they’re absolutely correct, and if you don’t see it their way you’re blind to the horrors of hidden racism.


    "What for you bury me in the cold cold ground?" – Tasmanian devil

  17. DeepThorn says:

    I am equally racist against against all races, actually more so against my own. (I feel every individual should be.)

    Statistical data showing behavior patterns and stating those statistic is racist.  Genetic research that shows advantages in educational success in Asians and physical abilities in Africans, both showing genetic disadvantages in the other.  The research also showed that Caucasians are between the two in both. (white man sucks because he isn’t the best at anything)  This is valuable research for genetics, but were called racially driven, even though they had the documentation to prove it. 

    Does this data say that all Asians will suck at sports and all Africans will suck at math?  Hell no, it just shows that the majority of their groups will have to work harder toward those goals.  We see that in our academic systems and professional sports here in the US.  There are still going to be white people in sports like basketball and football because we are talking about 14% of the country’s population to 66%.

    Now that information is far more racist than this game, and it statistically and scientifically correct.  This game is logically, demographically and story wise correct.  If I saw Africa filled with a bunch of white, Indian, Hispanic and Asian people, and not a majority African I would wonder what the hell they were thinking.

    I just want to see an Asian complain, like parts of the African community do, about something the illegitimate race card pullers do, then turn around and watch their faces to see how they respond.

    Is racism wrong?  Only if you are more or less racist against one group than another and not in a massively public setting where your standing is not well explained and rational. 

    Is racism a problem we see in the video game industry?  Heck no.  This industry welcomes any type of difference you can find, sexual preference, race, religion, and so on. 

    In the news industry is it a problem?  Hell yeah, I watched the Katrina coverage and heard a few very racist remarks that were not right to be said.

    Is racism wrong when many races are targeted?  …I don’t know.  I know if someone is bashing white people, and they are black, and are bashing their race as well, it is something that I am not against.  I accept that people in my race as well as I have flaws, as long as the person being racist can admit and publicly does so in the same way, that the people of his race has flaws as well as himself to the same extent.

    Being directly racist against a single group that is not your own is definitely wrong though, but not happening here.

  18. Roundling says:

    Did I miss something and it is now a human right to not be offended by anything?  It is quite literally impossible to create anything for mass distribution that won’t offend someone.  I understand people are offended by things based on personal or family experiences.  I found a family member dead from shooting themself in the head and I cringe at FPS games whenever I see a head shot.  Is the company that made the game being insensitive to those of us that have witnessed real life head shots?  I think not.  I can’t expect the rest of the world to stop making movies, television shows and video games without graphic depictions of headshots.  They happen, as I well know now.  The world can’t grind to a halt over my sensibilities.  Why?  Quite frankly, I’m not that important to the rest of the world.  I think people should realize their angst is their own and deal with it on a personal level without expecting the world to change for them.  As my mother was always fond of saying, "get over it".  I think this person spoke correctly, you CAN’T please everyone.  If you find that insensitive, maybe it is time you realize the world doesn’t exist to please you.  We’ve all got our own sensitivites and trying to enjoy something as a large group will always result in someone getting their toes stepped on.  Try and plan a barbeque for 50 people and see how many complaints you get from vegetarians.  Then try and make a video game for millions where you can’t include a vegetarian option.  Then again, maybe in the future, games should have a race selection where you get to chose who you are killing.  Think that would go over well?       

  19. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    Unless the morts have done something wrong, they have nothing to fear.




    -Remember kids, personal responsibility is for losers! -The Buck Stops Here. -Thou Shall Not Teamkill, Asshole.

  20. sirdarkat says:

    I would like to weigh in and say this game is racist … notice the violence of Non Zombie on Zombie Violence … how dare they program an entire game that encourages the extermination of an entire race, those bastards.

  21. JustChris says:

    This complaint comes from a small group of people, and they are implicitly suggesting that we should see racism in the game if they can see it. More than the complaint itself, it is more delusional to expect most people to think in the same manner as yourself.

  22. ezbiker555 says:

    There was a poster by the name of Independenthinker32 who mind you was completly insane and always ranting his stupid, racist, and over opininated ideals that whites were evil and all this, and he started trassh talking Resident Evil 5. He said that it was proganda for americans to train on killing blacks.

    He’s as stupid as JT in short.

    It’s so sad that these days people tend to overeact to the smallest things and make a big deal out of nothing.

  23. CarsAreScary says:

    I’m more upset about the negative image this game will give parastic organisms. They don’t all explode from your head in a violent eruption of blood and gore. Some will kill you slowly over the course of several years without you even knowing. I think this racism thing is just a smokescreen created by anti-parasite groups who want to detract attention from the violent killing of giant parasite monsters.

  24. King of Fiji says:

    The Progenitor virus comes from Africa?  How racist of you Capcom.  😛

    Whats next?  Are you going to have a cowboy randomly pop up and call the zombies nappy headed hoes?  So insensitive. 

  25. Zevorick says:

    Indeed. You know how it is with those Japanese developers, they’re just so racist against black people. Wait… what?

  26. Zevorick says:

    I could have sworn I remember shooting zombies of a myriad of nationalities in the few RE games I’ve played… I wasn’t too worried about their skin color as much as "Oh god don’t eat my bullets!". SOme games were so conservative with ammo that you couldnt possibly kill the zombies.

  27. Thomas McKenna says:

    Let’s see…

    Based upon the wikipedia article, there are 8 games which fall under the Main storyline of Resident Evil.  Out of these, you shoot black zombies in one.  This makes 1/8 which leads to 12.5%.

    Go to the demographics of the United States and we find that 13.4% of the population is only (as in, full blooded) African American.  When we go further out, and see the population of blacks in the world, we see that black people account for 19.7% of the world’s population (almost 1 in 5).

    Comparing these numbers, blacks are underrepresented in Resident Evil games.  This brings me to my conclusion:  How is this racist to have one game where you shoot black zombies?  Furthermore, does a zombie’s race even matter?  Do they themselves take it into account?  If a zombie was charging after you, would you think "Oh shit, it’s a (insert ethnic race here) zombie!" or would you simply think, "Oh shit, it’s a zombie!"

  28. elal says:

    How is it racist that there are africans in Africa? Isn’t it kind of retarded to suppose that zombies care about color? Or that zombie hunters pay attention to the color of a zombie? A zombie is a zombie. All zombies are dangerous, and none can be allowed to live if it were real.

    That would be like if I were to cry sexism if a zombie was a female and walked out of a girl’s locker room/restroom

  29. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    Oh dear God…

    It would be racist if he DIDN’T kill the black zombies, I mean, c’mon, after the spanish zombie massacre? After all those caucasian zombies? Zombie hunters don’t see color. They only discriminate between humans and zombies.


    -Remember kids, personal responsibility is for losers! -The Buck Stops Here. -Thou Shall Not Teamkill, Asshole.

  30. KayleL says:

    I am waiting for Fox News to respond. Fox is always so much more funny because they think they are reporters.

    Haha, silly Fox, reporting is for truth tellers.

  31. Nocturne says:

    This just nulls and voids the idea that the killing is just from a white person.

    Nearly, they sort of crowbarred her in after the racial issues kicked off, prior to the E3 2007 trailer she was never seen. If I remember correctly (?) there was mention from the development team that they made or altered Sheva just to balance things out.

  32. vellocet says:

    This entire series has been racist against the "living-challenged" from the very start.  I say it’s time to stop discrimination against the living impaired.

  33. FearNoMore says:

    LMAO! Amen my brother! To be honest I can’t wait to take out some zombies, regardless of the color. At least I can finally pretend these zombies are every black person that gave/give my race a bad name.

  34. ShadowDragon28 says:

    When it comes to zombies, it doesn’t matter what color you are. You gots to go.

    Nothing to do with racism.

  35. Vake Xeacons says:

    And RE4 was “racist” against hispanics. Yes, it is the same thing. We all suffer from racism from time to time (even us whites), so don’t try to pretend one’s race deserves special treatment.

  36. 1AgainstTheWorld says:

    Oh for goodness’ sake…  If it was a black man mowing down white zombies that’d be racist too ("Black people are violent against white people.")   Maybe they should make the zombies all different colors and holding hands, would that be acceptable?

    Bottom line, some individuals see racism everywhere simply because they are looking for it so hard.

  37. jmcc says:

    What seems weird to me is I haven’t heard any outcry about Far Cry 2. You mow down tons of Africans in that, don’t you?

  38. DorkmasterFlek says:

    Christ, was it racism when you were mowing down a village of Spaniards in RE4?  I don’t seem to recall there being a huge outcry over that one.  Or is it only when it’s whites shooting blacks that it’s bad?

  39. JustChris says:

    And what do they make of Sheva, Chris Redfield’s partner, who just happens to be black? (at least I think she is black- she is certainly dark-skinned). This just nulls and voids the idea that the killing is just from a white person.

  40. MaxVivian says:

    My first thought upon seeing RE5 was "holy crap that looks awesome", not "oh man why does it have to be a WHITE GUY shooting at people with my skin tone holy crap racism".  The game is set in Africa.  Deal with it.

  41. ZippyDSMlee says:

    Ah black resentment is quite clear, PC zero thought nazis exacerbate it by saying its ok to hate or mistruth as long as you are not white.

    And don’t get me wrong some of it is well deserved but like anything else once it goes past a certain point its just stupid!

    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=
    (in need of a bad overhaul)

  42. JustChris says:

    Good luck trying to call a Japanese producer a "cracker". And I thought the resentment against The Man was just directed at white people.

  43. Shadow Darkman Anti-Thesis of Jack Thompson says:

    OMFG I just read that thread. Holy shit, I did not see worse fail in my life. Not everyone that posted comments there fails, just a few that were really bad.



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