Capcom vows, “We're never going to have another Resident Evil 5 controversy”

When Capcom showed its first trailers of Japan-developed Resident Evil 5, the company was caught totally off guard by the firestorm of racism accusations in its depiction of primarily black African zombies fighting a white American protagonist. Surely the case for the title was not helped by the inclusion of enemies that were literally zombified spear-throwing tribesmen. A recent Gamasutra article delves into the action plan Capcom took at the time, as well as the steps it continues to take to ensure future games are more culturally sensitive.


Capcom took steps in both refinement of the game's content and via a public relations campaign to address these issues before its release.

Above: RE5’s actors address the racism controversy

"Since the RE5 controversy, we have become much more aware of how important it is that we are part of the asset creation process early on so that we are able to have a say in the end product," says Capcom senior PR manager Melody Pfeiffer.


"We are also designing a lot of our own assets from this side of the pond, so that we are able to make strategic pieces of content that make sense for our market, [and] we are working really closely with our producers in Japan to construct these materials for the West and they are open more then ever to hearing our thoughts and ideas for assets."

Above: One of RE5’s trailers

Fortunately for the Resident Evil 5 team, the title was well received despite the controversy; however Capcom assures the public that such public relation flaps will not happen again.

Did the controversy surrounding RE5 affect your purchase? Tell us in the comments.

Source: Gamasutra 

Aug 24, 2010


  • SONSET - August 29, 2010 6:37 a.m.

    I don't think this was even a controversy. The media sees something they expect to disturb people and then they seek the 1 out of 1000 people to complain about it and put him/her in the spot light. I'm black, all of my friends are black, we live in the inner city of NYC and nobody gave a damn. Besides the media complaining that this game was offensive to blacks and how blacks are upset..i've yet to see a black person criticize or demonize the game. All i've seen (assume) was white journalist repeating that black people are offended and then white people on the internet getting pissed at the non existent blacks who are supposedly offended. This was a media made controversy.Where are the blacks who are offended? They don't exist!
  • Genericpenisjoketista - August 26, 2010 6:03 a.m.

    Hey, it was Reuben Langdon! I didn't know that Dante was in RE5! Ya learn something new every day.
  • axelgarcia1 - August 26, 2010 2:17 a.m.

    although not ALL people in africa are black, i still dont see a problem
  • DF344 - August 25, 2010 3:01 p.m.

  • db1331 - August 25, 2010 1:55 p.m.

    I'm a little late to the party, BUT... When I read this headline I thought it was about Capcom acknowledging that RE5 was crap and they would never make another RE game that had co-op and action-over-horror gameplay. I was disappointed to read it was about race. Of course a game set in Africa is going to have black people in it. If it was Asian people, it wouldn't make sense. Where were the Jesse Jacksons of the world when gamers were shooting white zombies in all the early games? Where were they when we were shooting Hispanics in RE4? Why do black people act like they are the only ones who can be victims of racism? If Chris Redfield were black, would the game still be racist? Why did people get so bent out of shape about a video game where a fictional white guy shoots hordes of infected black guys when hundreds of blacks are shooting each other in this country every day? If they had taken the same game and swapped out 50 cent for Chris Redfield and thrown in a dumb story about how 50 played a concert for one of the African tribes but wasn't given the platinum goat he was promised as payment, AND threw in game music with the N* word in every track, nobody would have cried racism at all. They would have even advertised it on BET.
  • Felixthecat - August 25, 2010 1:39 p.m.

    I can shoot anyone I want in games. White, Black, it doesn't matter, both races are capable of turning to zombies.
  • taterboob - August 25, 2010 10:11 a.m.

    PC police strike again. The RE5 "controversy" was perpetrated by a bunch of people who jumped to conclusions from the initial promotional material without even knowing the context. Butthurt groups like this are what forces developers to return to the tired "aliens, nazis and zombies" stable of enemies time and time again. Tell you what, entertainment-makers, from now on make all future villians white and American (or vaguely European). We seem to be one of the only groups out there that can be negatively portrayed without letting our vaginas get all itchy about it. Oh, and while you're watering down your product for the sake of not hurting the knee-jerk loudmouths' feelings, stop making it seem like the mafia is made up of Italians! That really gets them riled up.
  • Zodiax - August 25, 2010 7:41 a.m.

    This is just the kind of ignorance about the press that I really hate. Yes, I still got the game.
  • Darkwun - August 25, 2010 6:36 a.m.

    Jesus Harry Christ, not this again... I'm black, and im offended that people find RE5 offensive. get the hell over it, you make the rest of us look more sensitive than a manic depressive clitoris! I was actually hoping this article would be about Capcom admitting their mistake about making RE5 co-op based and ruining the formula (seriously... the section with the twin mini guns made me want to cry on single player... I ended up playing the level again and just buying a rocket launcher to clear it instead... NEVER AGAIN CAPCOM!) Less moany moany more shooty shooty please people, this is Resident Evil. Not politics. Also... Shameless plug #2 JOIN MY PAGE! lol!/pages/Resident-Evil-The-TV-Series/112552680806?ref=ts
  • ThatGuyFromTV - August 25, 2010 4:44 a.m.

    Ah, the irony of racism. If the zombies were white, this controversy would have never happened. And if all races were treated equally, then controversy would have never happened. What they argued implied that blacks and whites (and other ethnicities) are all different from each other. We're all human. That's all that should matter.
  • sniperscope - August 25, 2010 4:25 a.m.

    I've personally wanted to punch everybody that said this game is racist right in their haughty, oversensitive, zealously pompous faces! I could never see a problem with black people in Africa, it's ridiculous! I pre-ordered this game as soon as I could and enjoyed it.
  • Fro4show - August 25, 2010 4:22 a.m.

    people these days are too defensive about their race or ethnicity. Im sure that someone out there would notice nine or ten Resident evil games that were set around the world, but wait theres not one set in Africa? "what are we not good enough to be zombies?" I have played only this resident evil game and the origional and I can say that it is not racist. the thought of it is rediculous. and because Ive only played two, I liked the story. It was good enough for me.
  • CurryIsGood - August 25, 2010 3:54 a.m.

    WOAH sh owing black people in africa is like totally racism
  • Cwf2008 - August 25, 2010 3:39 a.m.

    i was more disgusted with the gameplay and lol'd at the accusations of racism in this game
  • WhiteCredo - August 25, 2010 3:01 a.m.

    Well, given that both iterations of RE5 sucks; the story is utterly lame and the game is only depending on challenging Mercenaries and (maybe to a far lesser extent) Versus, controversy is silly. Just a quite broken tool, getting gamers on nerves as often as possible. If such settings do much ado, video game is going nowhere, it is just a game and >> people << just crazy sometimes...
  • EgonSpengler - August 25, 2010 2:49 a.m.

    "Muere, muere, muere, muere"
  • EgonSpengler - August 25, 2010 2:46 a.m.

    RE4 > RE5
  • andrewwoody - August 25, 2010 2:16 a.m.

    It's a videogame. Calm down.
  • GioAllDay - August 25, 2010 12:27 a.m.

    i agree with R_U_Guys_From_British its Africa i theres mostly dark people there, im Hispanic and if the game was set im a place were theres mostly Hispanic like Mexico or Salvador its only fucking common sense that zombies there would be Hispanic
  • sleepy92ismypsn - August 25, 2010 12:21 a.m.

    Hmmm, weird. I was just listening about the RE5 controversy in I think Talkradar 4. I've been catching up on some podcasts I've missed and I've listened to the first 12 in 2 days.

Showing 1-20 of 38 comments

Join the Discussion
Add a comment (HTML tags are not allowed.)
Characters remaining: 5000