HomePersonalRants & ObservationsRacism at Ubisoft? – Far Cry Primal

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Racism at Ubisoft? – Far Cry Primal — 10 Comments

  1. I’m not a gamer, but my entertainment media rules are strict: an active female or POC protagonist and I’ll maybe give you some of my money. No woman? No POC? You don’t get my money.

    I will watch a documentary of just white dudes battling each other during the War of the Roses. And I’ll read a non-diverse book about the creation of the Great Recession. But something that is fiction? I vote with my money.

    Put a white savior movie star in DancesWithLastSamuraiGreatWall? Fine. Just don’t expect me to buy a ticket. I recently turned off a family film via our streaming service because an Asian-American actor had to use a ridiculous “Chinese” accent to be “funny.” I don’t begrudge him having to take the work, but neither do I want my daughter internalising the idea that everyone Asian in the US is some sort of foreigner.

    I’m sorry you had to waste your dollars, Holly. But I think the only thing we can do is be careful where we spend or click and let our friends/family know when we find something offensive or just plain unimaginative and not worth our time.

  2. Hi Holly. First, I want to say thank you. I have been watching this site for a decade and a half, and have valued everything you’ve taught me over the years.

    Second, I too am a gamer. I actually bought No Man’s Sky after reading your thoughts on the game. I bought it right after that, and though I haven’t beat the game, I do adore it, and how it’s grown with the additional patches.

    Now, here’s were things get a bit dicey. I have always wondered how to separate products from creators. For example, I adored the movie Ender’s Game. I though it had some really neat ideas and executions of those ideas. So, I bought the book to see how it is in comparison to the movie. However, I know many people who won’t ever read from him because of homophobic statements he’s said ect. I own the book. It wouldn’t hurt him or help anyone for me to not have the book. I do intend to read the book, even though I will not likely get further books from him. Less because of his views, though that is a factor, but honestly, more because I feel that if he doesn’t agree or accept people not like him, he is unlikely to write them, and thus will have a muted and minimized cast as a result.

    How this applies to Ubisoft.
    I am a gamer. I love games, the stories in them, and the mechanics of them. I obviously don’t like or approve of racism. I’m the type of person who tries to remind others that racism isn’t something that just happens to people of color, but to all people. If this had been reversed, I agree that more people would be up in arms about this game. For me, I wasn’t particularly inclined to get the game, but now with this information, I wouldn’t ever buy it.

    But, and when you said that you would never buy another ubisoft game my mind went to a couple places really quick.

    The first place was, what games do they make? Because, depending on the game, I might not be will to not buy their games. My reason for this involved two main things, regardless of the choices that one game, with one game publisher might make, there may be other amazing games that have better people creating them than the team that made Far Cry who don’t deserve to be shunned because they are with a group that isn’t the best. My second reason for this was much more selfish. I don’t want to miss out on something I might love because some, not all, people are morally repugnant.

    I do acknowledge that if you are with a resist/sexist(Insert ist) company, then you are in a way condoning the behavior and the same goes for the consumer. To that I would say, that there is no way to fully remove ones self from people/company that are small minded. Depending on where you work, or where you buy your groceries, clothes, ect. You may not be able to distance yourself completely.

    The second thing I thought of immediately after wondering what games they make, is whether this was intentionally meant to be racist, or simply the product of several poor decisions, and a deeply confuse and politically correct society. I think its very possible that they needed to be able to have easily identifiable good vs bad guys, and didn’t go the other route, darker skinned being attacked by lighter skin to avoid backlash, and mistakenly thought that the other way would be better received. In our culture, people don’t make black jokes so they don’t offend black people, but they allow the reverse because they think its less bad, or not bad at all. This can be applied to skinny women verse curvy woman as well. Call curvy fat and your vilified, but a large person says a skinny person is a skeleton and that’s fine. I think that it was a bad choice, but I don’t think it was an intentional one. I think that people stupidly still have a bunch of “Ist” ingrained in them. I can’t believe we still fight wars rather than working as a species to better our world at large, but we do.

    I’d love to know your thoughts on any part of this. I think this issue is intriguing and I’m not one hundred percent sure where I sit on this topic. Like I said before, I won’t buy this game, but I’m not sure that I agree with not ever buying anything from this game publisher.

    PS. There is only one game I’ve ever really played from this company, which is the prince of Persia series. I’m not sure that could give that one up. But, I’m am leaning away from the idea of purchasing from Ubisoft in the future.

    • You’ve made some excellent, well-thought-out points in your reply.

      My reason for not buying another game from Ubisoft (and you have given me some second thoughts about that), is this: The only vote a product consumer gets in an open marketplace is with his or her money. I cannot know what they were thinking when they made it. The folks who programmed the game might not have meant any harm — they could in fact be Just That Stupid. Some people are.

      But games like these have hundreds or even thousands of people who touch them from inception through Go Gold day, and I cannot believe that EVERYONE who had a part in this game was Just That Stupid. Cover designers, marketing directors, play testers, story writers, artists — an A-List video game has as many people involved in bringing it out as a big Hollywood movie.

      So I think the same kinds of folks were involved in deciding “no one is going to dare complain about black guys killing white guys, and if they do, the SJW will rip them to shreds” as thought, “Hey, we’ll make all the women in Mass Effect Andromeda ugly so we don’t offend the SJW” crowd. I didn’t buy that game, by the way. I always play as a female if I can, and, having never had the option to be a hot female in real life (the best I’ve ever managed was “kinda cute”), I like to play as a hot female in my games.

      What kinds of folks are these? Moral and ethical cowards.

      And again, my only recourse — my only way to protest this moral and ethical cowardice, is to not buy any more games from Ubisoft. Or Bioware. Right now, that’s where I’m standing.

      I’m STILL playing No Man’s Sky, by the way. It’s generally what I do for an hour or so at night before I go to be.

      I start over from scratch with every update, and the I’m on my fourth go-through. Have platinumed once, almost made it after the second update, not even close this time. But I did find a 48-slot crashed ship, and I’m slogging through repairing all the slots now. 😀

      • Thanks for your response. I agree. The best way any consumer can vote for what they don’t agree with is buy hurting the companies bottom line by with holding money. And you have a point, it’s very likely that there were people who knew it was wrong and let it move forward anyway. It’s a shame that so many great games right now are falling into this horrid pit of bad decision making.

        With Mass Effect, I was so upset. I wanted that game in a bad way, with all the frills and buyable add on content. I would have got it all. But I was waiting till payday and I started hearing some disparaging rumors about the animation and writing. I love games with great graphics, but for me story is King. And even though they are patching the bad graphics and animation, you can’t fix bad writing this late in the game, with this kind of product. I won’t buy the game. That’s all we can do to let them know to never make this kind of mistake again. It’s also disappointing about how the females look. I always play female when its an option, and I want them to be beautiful. I don’t always make them look the same, but games are an escape, a fantasy, and we should be able to lean heavily into that. I’m fine with having more predominately professional and appropriate hair and attire, but the face should be able to look as nice as I want it to.

      • Also, I restarted No Man’s Sky once it had the new survival mode. It took me four restarts to have a viable game to play.

        First Time, I saved after I died and didn’t have enough of anything to refuel my shields or life support, and didn’t have anything close enough to get anywhere safe. I was marooned and there was nothing I could do to save myself. Restart.

        Second Time, I’d finally gotten my ship flying. I was impatient and so done with with my planet. I took to the air and picked a planet and landed. Then realized there was nothing on this planet, and no plutonium to refuel my now empty ship. Marooned. Restart.

        Third time, I’d learned that you can find ships with beacons instead of saving money to buy one. I found one, and it was way closer to me than my original ship, which I’d yet to find. I went to it, adopted the new ship, then realized that I didn’t know where the other ship was to start the Atlas Quest. Restart.

        I’m on the fourth iteration, and I still have much to do, but I love the game. I can’t wait to wade further in and see some really spectacular things. I’ve tried to avoid spoilers as much as possible since i have such a long way to go with the game.

        It reminds me of Sims Castaway but in among the stars rather than stranded on an island.

  3. Sigh!

    Holly, the Glorious Narrative tells us that only Whites can be racist! [Sarcastic Grin]

    • One of the black nurses I used to work with ripped some white guy for being a white guy. When I said, “Wow, pretty racist there,” she told me only white folks could be racist. She wasn’t being sarcastic. She genuinely believed that.

      It made me despair for humanity.

      • ::I hope the following isn’t too political.::

        There’s a theme going around that goes “You want more Trump? That’s how you get more Trump” that sums things up.

        I voted for Trump and don’t think he’s “racist” or the other “ist” that certain people throw around, but IMO he got support from plenty of people because Trump didn’t care what names he was called.

        • I don’t permit politics or religion in the classroom. I’ve seen it destroy communities — and I’m seeing both destroy the country I love.

          But I’ll discuss both here as long as folks follow the blog rules.

          I did not vote for a presidential candidate in the last three elections. I did not think there was a qualified candidate running in any of the three.

          In this last election, I thought Hillary was criminal scum, I thought Bernie was a communist, I thought Jill was a communist, and I thought Trump was an idiot.

          I did think Trump was the least unqualified, but in a country of somewhere around 400 million people, voting for “least unqualified” did not sit well with me. Where’s our Jeffersonian stateman, our Lincolnian man of integrity, our Reaganesque guy who gets shit done?

          My two votes for Reagan, by the way, are the only votes I ever cast for President that I did not have cause to regret.

          Trump has done better so far than I expected. Beyond that, I don’t yet have much to say about him.

          • Your Place, Your Rules.

            Which is why I was concerned about “being too political” in my comment.

            To be honest, I voted Trump more to cause the crook problems than any other reason.

            He has done better so far than I expected.

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