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Far Cry 4 cover art assumptions were “uncomfortable,” says Ubisoft

Tuesday, 24th June 2014 11:31 GMT By Dave Cook

Far Cry 4 received a fair bit of flack after the shooter’s official cover art was revealed, with gamers accusing Ubisoft of racism, stereotyping and more. The game’s creative director Alex Hutchinson has explained why the assumptions are incorrect, and how gamer’s knee-jerk reaction to the art was “uncomfortable.”

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It follows confirmation that new Far Cry 4 gameplay will be streamed here later today, June 24. Bookmark the link to watch it tonight.

Now, speaking with Eurogamer, Hutchinson elaborated on controversy surrounding the Far Cry 4 box art reveal, which he has already explained in some detail.

He addressed assumptions that the game’s villain – Pagan Min, the man in the purple suit – was white, and that the image of him placing a hand on his ethnic captive’s head was racist. He has already clarified that Pagan is not white, and that the captive man is not the player-character.

In fact, the player-character was revealed in this artwork to be Kyrat native Ajay Ghale, and in his Eurogamer interview he stressed that there’s perhaps about five white people in Far Cry 4, none of which are villains or people you fight against.

“It’s funny when there’s one picture out there and there are so many articles jumping to conclusions,” Hutchinson said of the uproar. “It would have been interesting for someone to ring us up. That would have been cool. For someone to say, ‘Hello. We think this. What’s actually happening?’

“That’s why I jumped on Twitter and was like, ‘He’s not white. That’s not the player. It’s more complex than that.’ So it’s been fun to see now that the video is out and more gameplay is out people are like, ‘Oh, okay. No big deal then.’”

On Pagan Min himself, Hutchinson said that while Ubisoft has been accused of stereotyping, he feels the assumption that the character was white is itself stereotypical. “This character is meant to be a melange of different things. He’s mixed race. The way he dresses is unique to him. It’s part of the character. It’s not a comment on gender or race at all.”

“As much as people want diversity, the weird crossovers are uncomfortable,” he added. “People were like, ‘Well he can’t be Asian because he has blond hair.’ It’s like, ‘Have you ever been to Korea?’”

What do you make of the Far Cry 4 racism and stereotyping matter? Is it even an issue? Let us know what you think below.

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21 Comments

  1. OrbitMonkey

    Peeps need drama & ignorance bangs the loudest drum.

    #1 5 months ago
  2. Talkar

    The gaming press always jumps to conclusions, and refuses to say they’re sorry when they’re proven wrong.

    The latest example i can think if, is the whole GFWL not shutting down, as pretty much every gaming news site said it would. Did any of them recognize their mistake? Nope, some even blamed MS.. Ludicrous really.

    #2 5 months ago
  3. pacmom

    Far Cry 4 HD Wallpapers:
    http://www.vgwallpaper.com/tag/far-cry-4

    #3 5 months ago
  4. AmiralPatate

    Maybe what upsets people is that he is Asian and yet he isn’t LEGO yellow. Fun fact, Asian don’t really come in that color. I mean, how racist do you have to be to expect the guy to be not white-ish?

    #4 5 months ago
  5. bradk825

    In my opinion the racists are often the ones who scream “racist” at everything. Addressing real issues in games is somehow unacceptable, but in TV, movies and novels it’s totally fine…

    Watch Dogs actually caught heat for having a black gang in a game based in Chicago. Seriously?

    I would say those who consider every artist a racist as soon as they see something that makes them uncomfortable need to think a little harder about the art. When racial divides are addressed in a piece of fiction, it doesn’t make the artist a racist. It is more likely to mean the opposite.

    #5 5 months ago
  6. ENGCLM

    I find it bizzare that they were accused of racism with the cover, I saw no such issue nor any intent to cause such.

    Somewhat funny how the people screaming racism, wouldn’t had it been the other way around. Mountain out of a molehill.

    #6 5 months ago
  7. sh4dow

    Just portraying racism isn’t racist. In fact, it frequently is quite the opposite.
    When I look at that cover, it conveys to me that there is probably some tyrannical asshole oppressing indigenous people. Don’t see what’s racist about that. It’s neither like they’re expressing that this image portrays their biggest fantasy or that all Asian people want to be flamboyant dictators.

    #7 5 months ago
  8. Llewelyn_MT

    It’s racist to say this picture is racist just because he’s a white guy.

    Either that, or people just got stupid thanks to all that “political correctness” nonsense.

    #8 5 months ago
  9. YoungZer0

    “gamer’s knee-jerk reaction”? Hm, from what I gather Alex is not talking about gamers here, but about “journalists”, as he mentions that there were articles jumping to conclusions.

    I’ve always been on the fence with folks like Jim from the jimquisition. I’d often times disagree with him, but his opinion on that topic put the last nail into the coffin.

    The reaction from the so called press was embarrassing. They were on the same level as Fox News, if not even lower. I think each and every one of them owes Ubisoft an open letter with a big apology, but like fucking children they refuse to do so.

    Yet people like Jim placed the blame on Ubisoft alone, basically saying that it was their fault for not providing more information. Newsflash you asshole: if you have nothing to write, write NOTHING. Stop spreading hateful misinformation. Take some fucking responsibility for your actions, you’re a grown-ass person.

    Right now you’re making money by spreading misinformation. How are you any different from a Fox News host proclaiming that global warming does not exist?

    The people who accused Ubisoft of racism (probably the same ones that accused them of sexism) have to be ignorant beyond comprehension … did those people ever met an actual asian person? Because it’s quite clear right from the fucking get-go that he’s asian.

    Grow up and fucking apologize.

    PS: I also remember people accusing Ubi of being homophobic, because they ASSUMED that Pagan Min was homosexual. He must have been, right? I mean just look at those clothes!

    What a bunch of two-faced cunts.

    #9 5 months ago
  10. zombizmo

    Twitter/tumblr whiners just being ignorant and knee-jerk as usual.

    #10 5 months ago
  11. PSOCecil

    Of course people were getting mad, gaming ‘journalists’ have a kneejerk reaction to perceived racism and sexism anymore, maybe because of their own personal beliefs, or, more likely, because they know it will get them clicks.

    #11 5 months ago
  12. bradk825

    @10 All true stuff. Blaming the victim is classless even for a journalist. I know there is a LOT of legal protection for journalism. For example here in Canada a few recently got away with writing some terrible accusations because they “made a reasonable attempt” to verify the information. To be clear, they did not ACTUALLY verify the info, they only TRIED to, and it was deemed not to be libel for that reason.

    But regardless of legal protection, if a journalist lies about someone and finds out they were wrong, they should do what any other normal person has to do: Own up to it and apologize.

    #12 5 months ago
  13. Dunno

    Well what can I say?! Stupid western press and weak Ubi. Everything is either racist or sexist or some other shit. How do you live there muppets?! hahaha I wish Uni had Just told the morons to go and suck their dicks and yes the cover is racist! Any more questions?! NO? Off you go!

    #13 5 months ago
  14. Dunno

    Oh and we’ve got some of them on this site who keep writing about this shit all the time. All your stupid fights are against nature. You lost before you even began and you don’t even know it. However you idiots will die trying. hahaha

    #14 5 months ago
  15. TheWulf

    I actually didn’t jump the gun on this one, the villain doesn’t look Caucasian to me. No, Ubisoft isn’t known for racism, just the intensely low brow grotesquenesses of sexism.

    #15 5 months ago
  16. TheWulf

    @10

    Not a difficult leap to make, considering that he’s consistently so stereotypically flaming. He does feel like a somewhat derogatory gay stereotype, even if he isn’t gay. Saying that he isn’t gay doesn’t change that, dick-for-brains.

    Because, hey, as a gay person, I’ve been waiting to actually see a proper gay character in something… well, forever now. But all we ever get are bloody stereotypes.

    You could stand to be a little less homophobic yourself, but that would require putting your brain back inside your skull and using it to actually be introspective and empathetic, qualities that you don’t currently have.

    This hits home, personally, and you’d never care about that.

    All you give a shit about is the superiority of The Great White Herd, and how us evil gay people are victimising you.

    Let me just pull up GreatWhiteHerd.txt…

    Wahhh! Wahhh! Weh! I’m a man of The Great White Herd and people aren’t talking about how fantastic I am, or about how victimised I am despite how fantastic I am. For fuck’s sake, stop talking about those inferior women and talk about me! Me! Meeee! WEH! WAAAAHHHHH!!!!

    There.

    #16 5 months ago
  17. TheWulf

    I wonder if using their own insults against them is strong enough to make them think? I’m taking a page out of Don Rickles book, here, by turning their homophobia back on them. It’ll be quite interesting to see how the youngling responds!

    #17 5 months ago
  18. DarkElfa

    @TheWulf Let me ask you a serious question if possible, but how, if sexual acts are not involved are you supposed to tell a straight person from a gay person since the only thing that makes them difference is sexual preference?

    I mean there are so many games where the protagonist has no interaction with the opposite sex where you could simply assume the character is gay if you wanted. For example, Master chief could be a gay black man or Samus from Metroid could be a lesbian. Without a declaration from the character or developer or a sexual act involved, the only way to portray a gay character as gay without sex or actually saying they’re gay is to use a stereotype of some sort of which all have some small basis in reality.

    As for the race issue in this picture its more about the mindset of the person seeing racism than actual racism existing.

    #18 5 months ago
  19. TheKingInYellow

    @TheWulf

    So in the last four weeks or so, you’ve:

    -Made the worst apology ever written regarding being handicapped
    -Claimed to be 50+ years old (since you demonstrated in the 1980s)
    -Admitted to being homosexual

    Is there anything else you can claim a victim’s complex for?

    #19 5 months ago
  20. Gheritt White

    @TheKingInYellow I’m afraid you’re not allowed to have a go at TheWulf, he’s exempt from criticism because of reasons.

    #20 5 months ago
  21. bradk825

    @21 Dude, that’s an unwritten rule and you just wrote it! You could break time and space doing that shit.

    Personally I just avoid reading the huge walls of text because I’ve learned I don’t find anything interesting in them. Well, at least not interesting enough to spend a half an hour reading 1 comment.

    #21 5 months ago

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