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 recentGamasutraarticle 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.
Aug 24, 2010
If you are playing we've got a Resident Evil 5 BSAA Emblem Guide to help you collect things.