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...
No. its not RACISM.
Technology have risen with age. and Things like Bio-Chemical Warfare are not some Fantasy anymore. Even back then during WWII people have already meddled in Bio-Chemical Warfare.
I believe that Resident Evil and others like it, Be it the movies, the games that Depict the utter chaos of a Viral Outbreak is actually a Simulation to show people what might happen if things like these prevails. Its just like what Jack Thompson says. instead of Looking at FPS as a MURDER simulator. why not Look at it as an Education Simulator? and things like HALO, Gears Of War, Killzone, Resistance. its a matter of Defence. i mean. Anybody can hold a gun but these games actually teaches people to defend instead of to kill. Yeah Jack Thompson look at it as a MURDER SIMULATOR. i'd give him HALO and force him to play. he'd then think of many other reasons why FPS is actually Important in building the Confidence and Courage to people. and also things such as WWII simulator. it actually helps MORE people who aren't interested in History to look at it in a New Light.
As i was Saying. Resident Evil 5 could be a Fictional Simulator on how such a Terrorist act would befallen in our everyday lives.
and one more thing. lets say this happen. and you're Black. a white guy turned zombie wants to eat you up. would you say "I WON'T KILL YOU! CAUSE I'D BE COMMITTING A RACIST ACT!" if you do, then you're an idiot. =) (rights to self-defence)
Vitality Before Violence
I haven't seem the scenes in question so I have no context to place them in. But let me ask this: Are we to assume every time fiction portrays black men attacking someone of a different race that we are viewing racsit imagery? If that is the basic assumption -- that any violence by black men immidiately constitutes rascist imagery -- then a lot of things I wouldn't have considered rascist become so. In my opnion outraged reactions to images like what I have heard about this one perpetuate rascism. It seperates what images are acceptable based solely on race. Doesn't that just help to maintain a divide? One we claim we are trying to move past?
To summarize the facts, the only images that are considered racist to many people are the few scenes depicting the white woman being dragged off and the possibility that the woman is in the sack being stomped on by Africans. Yet, if you pay attention to what I said, it only contained a few scenes, NOT THE WHOLE ENTIRE GAME. I hate people who nitpick the smallest details and try to rally people saying that because a few scenes of the games MIGHT be considered racist, whether that is true or not, DOES NOT mean the entire game is racist.
Yeah, the knee-jerk reaction is "racism, lol". But I probably won't be playing the final game not because of the content, but because of the play control (especially while using the knife).
You set a game in America killing mainly white people...no comment.You set a game in England killing mainly white people...no comment.You set a game in Africa killing mainly white people...THAT'S RASCIST, THIS GAME SHOULD BE BANNED!!!
Yeah, looks to me like the people calling rascist are the rascists. Last I checked Africa's population is mainly black. What would you say if Resident Evil 5 was set in Africa and you were killing mainly white poeple? Personally, I'd say that's more rascist than what we actually have.
I was prepared to answer "no" to this, but the wording of the question changed my mind.
Yes, I believe the game contains "racist imagery." That is, I'm sure there are seens that can and will be perceived as racist.
Do I think there was any racist intent, or is it a "racist game"? -- Absolutely not.
I can't see the poll myself, but regardless...
If a being is coming at me with a garden tool, an ax, a chainsaw, whatever, they're getting shot, no matter the skin color.
At 2:28 EST, it is at:
"Based on what we know so far, do you think that Resident Evil 5 contains racist imagery?"
Total Votes: 1188
You know, I haven't seen the Percentages fluctuate more than a point or two since 420 votes, when I voted.
For me, the scenery just works. Africa with some volitile countries and tribes who have militants who so terrible things to people. It's not racist, but it is rather uncomfortable. Remember, screenshots show that there are also white zombies. Capcom better have a well spun statement prepared. For me, i'm just going to play the game with the mindset that i'm slaughtering more mind-controlled peasents.
I'm an attention whore. So visit my DevaintArt and feed my ego. Feed the whore. http://keaton2008.deviantart.com/
To be fair, those who think the game purposly contains racist imagery is mentaly retarded, and their oppinions can not be held to literal standards. It's not their fault.
Rude sarcasm asside, look, its not that hard to tell that all of region in the game is infected. There ARE no normal africans in the game because of the virus.
Seriously, what game company in their right mind would WANT to put racism in a game considering how PC this country is? The thing with claims of racism these days, is that they are mostly done without thinking. Such is unfortunate because it belittles the importance and credibility of claims of racism that are actualy true. (p.s. they're not in games)
And this whole argument about not racism, but "racist imagery" is bull if you ask me. I'm sorry I sound rude here, but stupidity pisses me off, and the people who genuinely think the game is racist are triggering that (so I mean no offense to those that think it does have this imagery based on what some idiot or overly-sensitized person denotates from the game). Luckly this site is virtualy devoid of those people who really think the game is racist. Capcom should not be held at all to what some PC-addicts falsy denote from a game.
Should I take it that Halo has anti-religious imagery? Because the Covenant is religious and killing humanity?
Should I take it that Super Mario Baseball has pro-steroids imagrer? Because the characters hit the ball at inhuman standards?
That all sounds stupid. So shouldnt the notion that RE5 contains racist imagery be stupid too? Sure, someone will always denote some bull from anything. That doesn't mean the person who made it be held accountable at all.
Bravo. Well said.
How come people keep saying racist and racism when the argument is about racist imagery?
Yes, and Austin Lewis' response is so much more thought out than mine. /sarcasmAnd the word is rebuttal. If you're going to criticise my intellect, I suggest you learn to spell properly.
See, everyone makes mistakes. But it takes inanity to protest fictitiousness.
Interesting that you feel you can correct his spelling, but you're not smart enough to click the little button that says 'Reply'. Astounding and hilarious, really.
I suggest before you talk down to people, you pull your head out your ass.
And now, some quick facts!
1) GP has nothing to gain from 'generating controversy'. There are no ads on this sight that generate revenue, therefore they have nothing to gain from click.
2) Reporting on a controversy is not generating controversy. There is a difference- learn it.
3) You seem to feel superior to people, much like Derovius. Just like him, you're a testament to what a massive ego and a mediocre intellect can produce.
I actually *did* try and use the reply button three different times, and each time it said my post had no text, so that was a computer error. I physically couldn't reply, so :P
1) They have lots to gain, publicity for the site, publicity for the owners of the site, which could lead to TV/media appearances to talk about the "controversy", etc. There's plenty of ways to capitalise from a manufactured "controversy".
2) Your opinion is not fact.
3) I've never said I'm superior to anyone, so don't put words in my mouth. Being sick to death of hearing people talk about a supposed "controversy" that doesn't actually exist has nothing to do with superiority.
Speaking of, whatever happened to Derovius? Haven't seen him in a while.
I thought he was banned. I'm not sure though.
He was banned thank God.
Speaking of which, did they also ban his little worshiper, who was it... Sage? ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ "Game on, brothers and sisters." -Leet Gamer Jargon
The poll confuses me. The imagery isn't racist TO ME, but it certainly can be interpreted that way. They game isn't racist, I think, because it's about zombies, not race. Maybe it's racist against zombies...
Unfortunately you can't control how people percieve something, and it becomes even harder when images are plucked out of context. Some people WILL make it racist, but I don't think it was intended to be.
You don't know how it was intended to be. In Japan they have different views on foreigners and some of those views are negative. What's the excuse? The excuse is it's their country and they can say and do whatever they want. But it doesn't mean they're right about what they say. *sigh* I believe I've gotten off-topic and started ranting, sorry about that.
There is a difference between the game being racist and the game containing racist imagery. Nobody, or at least nobody responsible, is suggesting that the developers at Capcom are bigots who genuinely believe that black people are monsters who must be slaughtered by beefy white supermen. However, the imagery reported so far, and even what I saw in the demo, is pretty troubling. In America, it was not so long ago that the idea of black men raping white women was a major impetus towards white-on-black violence, and one that was so powerful that black boys were lynched and murdered for such crimes as whistling at white women (e.g. Emmett Till). There are still parts of the south where it is not safe, as in it is life-risking, for a black man to date a white woman, because of this image. Even if Capcom are not racists, and do not intend any racial message with the game, the image (among others) remains a concern because of its history.
I haven't seen any Canadians in the game. Clearly it's racist.
(I know, it's a nationality, not a race. But come on, this is a generated controvery, the new millenium version of the protests against "Coonskin.")
--- The Mammon Industry
Damn, no zombie Canadians :( *cries* Can a game ever represent us Canadians? (with a great exception of Call of Duty 3! We kicked butt in that :D )
Don't forget the Canadian firefighter in Eternal Darkness.
I'm still crusading for an official CFL game, tho. (Go Riders!)
Ooh right, forgot that. Hrmmm an actual CFL game would kick righteous ass.
We shouldn't be so quick to dismiss the objections that, you know, those non-gamers might have regarding the imagery.
First, there's a difference between racism and racist imagery. I don't think that the game is racist at all, and I think that's obvious to almost everyone. But I'm sympathetic to the claim that the game occasionally has racist imagery. Or, I think we should be at least be willing to explore the claim. Like one of the previous posters mentioned, images of black men dragging off white women, or otherwise assaulting them, is old-timey racist bread-and-butter. It doesn't mean that the game is racist, or the designers, or that it was in any way intentional, but I think there's something to be said about considering these things seriously if we really want to convince anyone outside of our insular culture that games really can be art.
I'm just sayin'.
I think that anyone who claims this is racist should go to Africa. Go off the beaten paths, and see what happens. I swear to God, everyone is acting like Africa isn't a place where you can get skinned for not using the right greeting.
And before someone says 'its not that way everywhere' thats true. In larger cities, it is very uncommon. But if you go into the places that make up 9/10ths of Africa, you won't come back unless you bring a gun and a squad of bodyguards.
Not trying to sound racist but how many Japanese people do you think actually explored Africa before making this game?
Honestly, the only way you can get my ass to go to Africa is with a fat sack of cash and provision for things that I'll want there (Rifle, Armor, Potable Water, MRE's).
I'm kind of wondering how much real controversy there is. Five or ten people with too much racial sensitivity and with blogs or jobs writing game columns might complain about it and make it seem like lots of people are up in arms over something that in reality only bothers 0.1% of the people that care about the game.
From a different angle: no one's going to write a column about how they find no racially insensitive imagery in a game. So we're going to mostly hear just one side of the debate, because the other side (the side that says there's no racism) isn't interesting enough to spill any ink over.
WTF are you talking about?
"I'm kind of wondering how much real controversy there is. Five or ten people with too much racial sensitivity and with blogs or jobs writing game columns might complain about it and make it seem like lots of people are up in arms over something"
There's only been 3 people who actually spoke out about the game.
"So we're going to mostly hear just one side of the debate, because the other side (the side that says there's no racism) isn't interesting enough to spill any ink over."
IGN, TeamXbox, GameSpot, GameTrailers, JoyStic and BoingBoing sure don't see any racism and they're bloggers. Think before you speak.
I haven't seen Joystiq take a side on the racist/not racist debate - they've just been reporting on other people that are saying it's racist. Can't speak for the other outlets you mention as I don't really read them, but the 'RE5 is racist' angle has gotten a lot more play than the 'RE5 isn't racist' angle. And a quick search of Joystiq finds three articles reporting on other media outlets/blogs complaining about the racism and nothing about anyone actively saying it's not racist. The only thing I found actively saying the game isn't racist is a GP article from 10/27/08 with statements from the game's producer. The article didn't get that much attention or interest if comment counts are any metric (52 for that article, versus 250+ for other articles talking about people that are calling the game racist.)
And if there's only 3 people speaking against the game, that only proves the point - GP's reported extensively on this 'racist controversy' which really is only controversial to three people as you say.
Why bother replying to something that sounds correct? I'll start arguing when people come with loads of bull.
I agree that while some of the images, are really not the best...(they would make me uncomfortable whether the NPC's are male/female...european, asian, or african. It really doesn't matter, but the whole point of a Resident Evil game is to have a bit of uncomfort while getting some quick scares :P )
Playing the demo, I didn't get the feeling of ANY racism what so ever. The infected where fast and vicious and seemed almost inhuman (the red eyes, and the creature like mouth when they went to bite you.). It didn't give me a chance to think about anything other than "Oh god, I am running low on ammo...crap there are more around the corner!"
Playing the demo for a 2nd time, I actually noticed quite a bit of caucaisans lumped in the infected masses (virus/infections are equal opportunists ) I don't get the feeling of racism what so ever after playing this game. Feels very similar to Resident Evil IV. Seems to be good for a quick scare...
If you are looking to find racism in the product, then I am sure you will believe it is. If you are just looking for a good Resident Evil game or a suspenseful action game, you'll see it for that. It is not purposefully racist, but if that is all you want to see it as...I'm sure watching an episode of Sesame Street or CSI would be offensive as well.
Sigh, I really don't think it was meant to be racist, the setting just happens to be Africa, where you find Africans. No one mentions anything about the spanish in RE4. Really they are just keeping it real for the location. It isn't meant to be racist at all.
Now I can see why some people might see it, but really wouldn't it just be weird to be in Africa fighting hordes of German people? There are just more Africans in Africa than Europeans, Asians, Native Americans, Hispanics, ect.
Your kind of comments are the most common I've seen. No one is saying fighting black zombies is racist. For the love of God please read what people are saying about the game before you speak.
Personally, I think the best way to deal with this controversy is to...not. Are some people upset? Yes. But at some point people have to just STOP reading "racism" into every violent image of a minority group.
Is racism still a problem? Absolutely, but let's not read sinister motives into every single negative image of a minority. Sometimes a gang of people dragging a woman off...is just a gang of people dragging a woman off. If it had been a gang of white people dragging a black woman, would it be better? Or a gang of black people dragging a black woman? Or a gang of white people dragging off a white woman?
Jesus Christ - Can we PLEASE drop this topic already?
Or is GP determined to exploit this for attention even further?
Yes, seconded. You have expressed your opinion. And now, my rebuttle is you lack the rationale nor intellect to establish a well-based argument in the defense of such delusive, apocryphal, assertion.
Jesus Christ, can you go fuck off in a corner somewhere? You obviously don't have anything intelligent to add to the discussion, so why the fuck are you here?
Does anyone else feel that the people who are so quick to throw out racism on this are the ones that are really the racists. I know that this is a sensitive issue that there is indeed a lot of racism out there, but people calling RE5 racist but not calling RE4 racist only seems to tell me that these people think that there actually IS a difference between people based on skin color.[other than different health things and blah blah y'all know what I mean.] Which seems a little odd to me since that would put them on the same side of people who they claim to be against.
That makes no sense. How are they racist for calling the game racist? Please give reasons. Secondly the problems between RE4 and RE5 aren't the same. Please read WHY some people think it's racist. It has nothing to do with what race they picked but HOW they displayed the race this time. People like you fail to see what the controversy is and automatically think it's because the characters are black. Try reasding what the people say about the game before shooting your mouth off.
The image is only racist when viewed through a racial lens. As mentioned above, to the non-racial minded, the image in question says that your in a bad place with bad people. It aslo displays that people are forced to get infected. To the racial-minded, it's racist imagery being dragged up by a company and group of people who, in all likelyhood, would have had no idea that the image could have a history.
The reason the image isn't racist in context is because its quite clear that the black men in question are infected. The problem with labeling this as a racist image is that it basically says that you aren't allowed to portray blacks, and blacks specifically, in any negative image whatsoever when they appear in a medium. It's stupid and limiting. It's also unreallistic.
It's located in Africa. Wouldn't it be racistic to make them all hispanic?
Ugh accidental double post, please delete.
Didn't they already do that with RE 4? :)
Honestly though, everyone was cool with killing Spaniards some 6 years ago, why choose now to play the ethnic card?