With the release of Capcom's Resident Evil 5 drawing closer, the debate over whether the game contains racist imagery has been rekindled.
What do you think?
Register your opinion in the GamePolitics poll at left...
There should be the option to vote "There's no racism in RE5 but understand how some people might perceived it that way".
Yep, i'm sure Capcom had no intention to offend anyone, but they did. I think in the rest of the world no one is going to make a fuss about it (i haven't heard anything here in Germany), but i guess in the US it's still "too soon". In theory, every piece of fiction has the potential to offend somebody, but it only does if there are some relatively fresh, real life "touchy" subjects associated with it. And white-against-black racism is still a reality, and has been much worse only a few decades ago. No company would make a game about "9/11"-like events, but a similarly cruel event that happend over 200 years ago would be no problem. Still, i'm buying that game!
Er...people making a big deal about D&D (satanic) and Harry Potter (also satanic)...
If you make something that is well-known, someone will be offended. Period. Some of it gets news coverage, some doesn't, some is reasonable, and some isn't (like this). I could get offended by someone walking down my street, but that doesn't make it okay.
Intent should be the biggest factor in whether someone is offended or not. Since Capcom has no intention of offending anyone, and is simply being realistic (Chris = main character, Africa = African zombies), there's no logical reason to be offended.
And if anything I only see black-on-white racism becoming more of a problem....
-If an apple a day keeps the doctor away....what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-
How about holding off on this poll until the game is actually available to the public? I'm not going to affirm/deny racism based on some trailers and a demo.
Do Not Talk About Feitclub http://www.feitclub.com
Personally I'm interested, not so much in what the results are now, but what if any difference there'll be between opinions now, and a while after the game has been released, especially if after the game has released, the number of people who vote that it is racist has increased.
Nothing will change. RE being popular has obviously blinded people into thinking it can do no wrong. I have a question. What WOULD be considered racist in RE5? I get the feeling people will say nothing can be racist when RE is concerned.
So wait, what exactly is racist about this game then?
Chris going in and shooting black people for the hell of it would be racist, but Chris defending himself against zombies is not racist. It shouldn't matter what color skin Chris has, as long as the zombies are killed.
Regardless of what a poll here a gamepolitics says, a lot of non-gamers are going to see racist imagery anyways. We still haven't figured out how to discuss this issue with them, without resorting to the weak arguement, "Dude, it's just a game."
Is Japan really beyond taking a stab at another race? I'm not saying they made RE5 racist but how come everyone think they're some superior race of people who would never think of making a racist game? Just sayin'
The problem that a lot (not all) of those calling the game racist aren't trying to discuss the issue, just reacting to a minimum of information.
How about the argument that its racist to think that black people are above being able to be turned into zombies?
No one said that.
To be fair, it seems that their bone of contention seems to be that the scene of the gang of black men dragging off a white woman is that of the racist imagery a long time ago that black men were evil creatures just waiting to drag off white women and have their way with the women. I'm not sure of this personally, but that's seemingly a stereotype that was spread about during the years of overt racism in Africa/USA?
Of course on an emotional level, I can understand how this kind of imagery can be harmful to their image as an ethnic group. However, their argument falls on its face pretty hard on a logical level. In a zombie apocalypse, I would think that its hard to find people acting in a logical or humane fashion. The actions of the gang of men in a situation where there is an apocalypse/dystopia/disaster/hell-on-earth would only appear to be a gang of *randomly coloured* men dragging off a *randomly coloured* woman.
I would guess that asking those who decry this as racist imagery to stop would be as hard as asking me to recognise that the scene is racist imagery, Nearly Impossible, Its as hard to ask someone to stop associating a situation with a concept that they recognise as being associated, as it is to ask someone who does not hold that same concept or association.
Oooh! You mean there are still people arounx with the mythical "Common Sense"?that
Actually another item that is getting thrown around is the scene where several black men beat up something in a sack... we don't know what's in the sack, could be a white woman or it could be a black man, all we have is black men being violent... this raises the question, is it the white woman victim that makes the imagery supposedly racists or just the violence in general; would that scene be fixed if it was a black woman instead or would it still be labeled as "racist"... some how i'm thinking it still get labeled.
Essentially, it sounds like the argument that it's coming down that you can not portray africans in such a negative sense... like africa must be portrayed as "happy sunshine land" or something where all the africans are good people. Portraying whites as being violent people is perfectly fine, but you can't do that with an man of color; if you do, you are being racist and stereotyping against them
My only thing is that in 3rd-world countries (and hell, even in 1st-world countries) there is violent, fucked up shit that happens. If it's in Africa, where an epidemic is happening, I can completely see how all shit would hit the fan and there'd be tons of violence, on both bags and women (white or otherwise). I could even see how, in a reallllyyy degenerated area...the infected or insane could go after the not-so-local women...
Even if that is the main scene pointed at when shouts of 'racism' arise.. how many other games/movies feature a woman being drug off into the darkness by white badguys/zombies/monsters/demons? <sarcasm> Shouldn't we be crying 'sexism!' instead? Why is it always the woman who is helpless? </sarcasm>
Its an image meant to set the scene of 'you are in a bad place with bad people'. The fact that it is black skinned people in this case is more a coincidence of location. Seriously, this is resident evil 5 for crying out loud. They're running out of places to put zombies. They've done the exact same thing before in different locales with different colored people. Its not racism.
And for those that still say the game is bad because of the imagery, regardless as to whether or not it was unintentional: Where is your outcry over WWII games that feature the swastika? I'm sure that imagery strikes a bad chord with Jews who survived the concentration camps. And there are dozens more possibilities. If we shunned every game that offended a minority, the only game we could play would be 'Desert Bus'!
Which is offensive to bus drivers! It implies their job isn't that hard. I'll bet you any Greyhound pedal-pusher will tell you there's a lot more to it than just keeping the wheels on the road.
--- The Mammon Industry
Whoever said there's racism in RE5 is full of bullshit. You're killing zombies. It doesn't matter what color they are, zombies are still zombies.
When Jack Thompson runs his mouth, does anyone really care what he has to say anymore?
The issue isn't even about the zombies, it's about the normal Africans. Gosh why is everyonr ignoring the real issue?
No, it's NOT an issue! It's just a freaking game!
TBH that this "issue" has been raised at all is racist to me. Because it's saying that it's ok for any other race to be zombies or commit inhumane acts in extreme situations or whatever, but that it's not okay when those people are black. They are people just like the rest of us, and just like us they are capable of good AND evil.
Because people were crying racist imagery over the zombie killing when the controversy first started.
Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.
I still don't understand how someone can cry out about it being a racist game when it is simply using a set of people that fit the location. RE4 used Hispanics because it was set in Spain; RE5 uses Africans because it's set in Africa. It would stand to reason that a Resident Evil game set in Japan would have Asian zombies; Iraq, Middle Eastern zombies; India, Indians; America, a mixed bag, depending [slightly] on the region.
It's not about this being "just a game": it's about it having a sense of realism and telling a proper story. The developers wanted to explore a Resident Evil story set in Africa, and that's what they did. How are they being racist for simply having African people in their Africa setting?
Besides, the main character has shot just as many white zombies as he will be shooting black ones. He's an equal opportunity zombie killer.
No one is saying anything about special treatment.
He kinda did, saying that this game or RE4 was racist when all of the other RE games had ONLY white zombies and white good guys...
I kinda have to agree with both of you on this one. I played RE4 on both the GC and Wii, but don't remember as much, if any, controversy involving the hordes of Spanish zombies (Los Ganados) that you mowed down throughout the game.
However, non-gamers will look in on this and, seeing a buff white man and slender coffee-colored Brit blasting black-as-the-midnight-sky Africans in the face, will cry out "racism". We gamers already know the whole RE mythos, but other people may just not understand.
P.S. I think the last part about JT was actually his sig. :\
Game on, brothers and sisters.