If there is one thing the Internet is good for, it’s allowing nerds to come together to take video games way too seriously.
Case in point is the idiot juice being consumed over the latest Resident Evil 5 trailers. Is it racist? Is it class warfare? I highly doubt both. The knee-jerk reaction is for me to say “STFU, you haven’t even played the game. No one has. You don’t even know what the story is.” But it goes deeper than that. The aforelinked class warfare article seems to think that all games are escapism and since he doesn’t want to shoot impoverished black people as a rule, that he can’t play this game. Well, I don’t want to shoot people as a rule myself, but that doesn’t mean that if I am put into a game situation where there are maniac killers coming at me with chainsaws, that I wouldn’t enjoy evading them and pulling the trigger. This isn’t African Village Raider just as RE4 was not Backwater European Village Destroyer. or RE1 was Chris & Jill Presents: Let’s Shoot White People! The citizens are zombified antagonists in a story that goes deeper than point gun -> shoot. And RE5 will likely have a similar level of depth of story. What really bothers me is that people are starting an uproar about killing folks in games now, but didn’t have a problem killing police officer zombies in Resident Evil 1 or child zombies in Silent Hill, &c.,
But most importantly, games are not just escapism. You shouldn’t want to be in the character’s shoes in many games. You shouldn’t always empathize with your avatar or agree with the objectives you must complete as that character. The avatar, the enemies, the dialogue, the soundtrack, the environments, all of these are set pieces to tell a story. If you find games to be solely escapism, then I recommend that you stick with games that are rated E – most preferably sports sims.
My biggest problem with the trailer was Chris Redfield’s model. When did he become a bodybuilder with twenty inch pipes? Geeze.