Top 10 Weirdly Racist Video Games

Top 10 Weirdly Racist Video Games
10. Dead Rising 2
Dead Rising 2 is a simple game: you hit zombies
with things until they die, and you meet wacky
characters that you get to save. One of these
characters is LaShawndra, a woman of both
size and color who, after you meet her, begins
immediately complaining, in African-American
Vernacular English no less, about how her
husband has run off. Through a combination
of her sass and… um, more sass, she manages
to save her husband’s “skinny ass,”
and greets him with a punch in the face and
a fake, half-hearted apology.
If you’re keeping track, that’s exactly
how stupid white people who have never met
a black person think black people act.
9. The Legend of Zelda Series
The Legend of Zelda is a series of video games,
started 26 years ago and still going strong.
It tells the story of Link, a white dude,
who has to save princess Zelda, a white lady,
from the villainous, thieving Ganondorf, who
is…yeah, you see where this is going. Since
the very first Zelda game, the villain has
been Ganondorf — and we’re very sorry
to do this to you, Zelda fanboys, but Ganondorf
is a racist stereotype.
Keep in mind, this isn’t just about one
game having one dark-skinned villain- -he’s
supposed to be representative of an entire
culture. His people, called the “Gerudo,”
live in the desert, fight with scimitars and
glaives, and oh, they’re all thieves. When
you have an entire race depicted as criminals
and thieves — and you give that race qualities
based on stereotypes of a real world ethnicity
— then you’ve dropped the ball somewhere.
Somewhere racist. Which is the worst place
to drop a ball, because now it’s covered
in racism, and that stuff is notoriously hard
to wash off.
8. Ghostbusters
In the mid-80s, Activision released a Ghostbusters
game for the NES, Atari 2600, Sega Master
System and the Commodore 64. It featured…
… three…wait, what? That looks odd for
some reason. Let’s compare those Busters
to the movie.
Oh, that’s right. There’s four of them.
Technological limitations must have gotten
in the way. I wonder how they decided which
one to cut.
7. Resident Evil 5
When Resident Evil 5 was released in 2009,
it attracted some controversy for its gameplay,
which is made up entirely of a white guy in
Africa gunning down diseased black people
(the above clip contains the protagonist shouting
“the natives are hostile!”). We almost
didn’t throw this one up here, since it
got so much press when it first came out — but
then we realized that a lot of people really
didn’t understand the issue, so let’s
take this chance to explain it:
Most of RE5’s imagery and motifs are lifted
directly from a real-life tragedy occurring
in parts of Africa right now, called the AIDS
Epidemic. Most of the imagery in this game
(visibly sick Africans, crushing poverty)
have entered the cultural mindset because
of the growing international concern for this
epidemic. It’s fine to draw inspiration
for horror from reality (in fact, it’s best
to do so) but RE5’s posited solution to
this problem is killing everyone infected.
Then there’s the difference between this,
and previous Resident Evil games. People have
argued that, because most of the zombies were
white in Resident Evil 1-3, and hispanic in
Resident Evil 4, then it’s hypocritical
to say it’s only racist when the heroes
are killing black people. This argument doesn’t
hold up because the United States doesn’t
have a history of oppressing and enslaving
other white people and, as for the Hispanics
well…yeah, that was kind of weird, but Spain
doesn’t have the same problem Africa has
with being depicted as a war-torn wasteland
in American popular culture.
And no, this problem isn’t solved by the
inclusion of Sheva.
6. Diablo 3
In Blizzard’s latest click-fest, you choose
one of five classes to play as you fight the
hordes of Hell. And of those five classes,
only one is black — the witch doctor. He
speaks in a heavy accent, moves around like
an animal, comes from the jungle and looks
like every stereotypical witch doctor ever.
The only thing he doesn’t do is shrink heads
but that’s likely because Blizzard didn’t
want to pay the Seville family any royalties.
This one is less “blatantly offensive”
and more just “lazy stereotyping.” If
you’re not in the gaming community, you
may not realize this but Diablo 3 is a really
freaking big game. Diablo 1 and 2 are legendary
installments in the dungeon-crawler genre,
and this latest installment sold 3.5 million
units in the first day. It’s a big, popular,
fun game.
The weirdest part is that this is a step back
from the preceding entries — Diablo 2 featured
a black Paladin character that didn’t play
off of any stereotypes of preconceptions.
Now, with Diablo 3, if you’re a black gamer
and you want an avatar who looks like you,
the Witch Doctor is your only option. Hope
you like piercings!
5. Spanish for Everyone
Some people would argue that, when teaching
Spanish, it’s important to teach the horrifically
negative stereotypes associated with the language.
Those people are idiots, and also apparently
responsible for Spanish For Everyone.
Ostensibly a game designed to teach children
Spanish, the gameplay is centered around a
white protagonist chasing after Miguel (his
hispanic friend) who stole his Nintendo DS.
Oh, and Miguel’s father is heavily implied
to be a druglord. But Spanish does happen!
4. Freaky Flyers
Cartoons live off of the human brain’s ability
to recognize patterns. Bugs Bunny looks nothing
like a human being, but viewers recognize
the pattern of what a smiling, wacky character
is supposed to look like, and their brain
automatically fills in the rest.
So what happens if you decide that instead
of “wacky character” archetypes, you’re
going to go with “racist” archetypes?
You get…Freaky Fliers. We’re not going
to go through a list of everything wrong with
this game because we have lots of other things
to get to this week, and honestly the gameplay
itself doesn’t matter. We’re just going
to leave you to watch the above video, about
a billionaire oil magnate from Arabia (zillionaire,
depending on the current price of oil), named,
naturally, Sheik Abdul.
3. Pokemon
Wow. Okay. Jynx, huh? Really…really?! Yeah
— that was a bad idea.
2. Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!!!
Racist Video Game lists are almost irresponsibly
incomplete without Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out.
This classic NES game tells the story of a
plucky little white dude named Lil’ Mac,
who fights his way through an army of racist
stereotypes so he can unseat Mike Tyson, a
black guy with authority. People have written
entire articles about the racism in this one
game. Our favorites are Piston Honda, the
Japanese Samurai boxer, and Bob Charlie, because
that’s almost a joke, right?
1. Call of Juarez: The Cartel
While video game advocates would rather focus
on the intellectual and artistic potential
of video games, there’s really no denying
that the industry is far more familiar with
exploring the depths of stupidity — and
so we come to Call of Juarez.
CoJ: TC is a game about the Mexican Drug War,
and it is pretty much the worst thing to have
ever happened to the industry. The game caters
blatantly to racist stereotypes by building
gameplay mechanics that require you to cut-down
wave after wave of black and Latino characters,
to the point where they lack any semblance
of humanity. One level even features a special
“achievement” for killing black people,
in a level where your goal is to go into a
slum and incite gang warfare. The game even
decides that sex-slavery is a great topic
for it to tackle, as it depicts the tragedy
of a bunch of American women being sold to
rich Mexicans. Too bad that, in reality, it’s
the exact opposite.

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