Salty Jerkface Wowsers
Trouble has been a-brewing this week on social media. In the run up to the release of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided on August 23, Eidos Montreal has been releasing a lot of promotional art this week. The game tackles a futuristic scenario of mechanical apartheid wherein cybernetically enhanced humans are segregated from society and denied their basic human rights, and so the art has obviously taken on many real world overtones and themes. One of the more overt references made in Mankind Divided‘s concept art is the slogan ‘Augs Lives Matter’, which is a clear reference to the thugs, terrorists, vandals, and degenerates which comprise the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement. If this particular parallel were to be considered inappropriate in any sense, then it could only be in the sense that in the world of Mankind Divided the augs [augmented humans] are depicted in somewhat sympathetic terms, whereas the inherent criminality of the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement could not make them any less worthy of sympathy. That being said, there is apparently an aug terrorist group operating within the aug ghettos, so perhaps the reference is apt after all. At any rate a complete idiot got super buttmad at Eidos Monteal this week on Twitter, not because the comparison to ‘Black Lives Matter’ is extremely unflattering towards augs, but rather because Eidos was ‘appropriating the culture’ of a group of people who’s idea of a peaceful protest involves setting buildings on fire.
Bioware Montreal employee cum mascot Manveer Heir took to Twitter in order to pen a salty screed against a development studio far superior to his own. He was sputtering with righteous anger on account that Eidos Montreal was not ‘woke’ enough to be making reference to the sainted dindus of the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement:
“Many other video game studios don’t have enough diversity, but when you outright fuckup by appropriating BLM you deserve to get called out. Eidos Montréal consistently shows they don’t get it on these issues. Or they don’t care.
Also, let’s pretend for a minute there was a ton of diversity on that Deus Ex team. It doesn’t mean they understand the issues well enough. Diversity on its own is not the solution. It’s a first step. Actually being woke enough to understand inclusion issues still must occur.
Anyway, I think Eidos Montréal should be ashamed of themselves for appropriating a real black struggle and movement for financial gain. If [Eidos Montreal] gives a crap about black folks and diversity/inclusion, they would stop using that image to promote the game.
Even if SOMEHOW in game the whole “Aug Lives Matter” is done really well, in advertising it is devoid of context and highly problematic.”
Wow, have some buzzwords! One particularly enjoys the part where Heir claims that it does not matter how much ‘diversity’ the Mankind Divided team has because of the fact that they are not ‘woke’ enough to be trusted to explore topics like ‘Black Lives Matter’. By not ‘woke’, what Heir means is that Eidos presents social issues with adult grade nuance instead of turning their games into one-sided propaganda pieces like Bioware. The individuals responsible for devising the mechanical apartheid theme of the game, Gilles Matouba and Andre Vu, are themselves from a black and Asian background respectively, so when Heir claims that they are not ‘woke’ enough to discuss these issues, what he really means is that they have so much internalised racism that they are effectively white, effectively erasing their cultural identities.
It is such a good look when an employee from one Montreal developer publicly smears another Montreal developer two weeks before their game releases! Manveer just had to broadcast those virtue signals, and the worst part is that the studio he works for likely approves of his rogue action. Regardless, this should be seen for what it is: the violent death throes of a dying studio. Bioware is pozzed beyond any hope of survival in today’s market. They do not make games, they make ham-fisted propaganda – and the market for that is limited. The last time Bioware displayed any kind of originality was eleven years ago with the release of Jade Empire, and the last time they made a good game was seven years ago with Dragon Age: Origins – and even Dragon Age: Origins contained huge red flags regarding where the studio was headed. Now there has been a mass exodus of all of the talent behind Mass Effect and Dragon Age, and the people left behind are mostly Social Justice losers like Manveer Heir, who is so radical that he publicly supports terrorist attacks against the US until such a time as America is governed by the principles of Social Justice – not even kidding.
So now We have Mass Effect: Andromeda releasing in the first quarter of next year and nobody has heard much of anything about it, nor does anyone much care. In celebration of Andromeda‘s imminent release Bioware are closing their forums at the end of the month. That is the sort of thing that a studio does before they turn out the lights and close their doors. It is also a huge vote of confidence in their obscure sci-fi cover-shooter. Bioware used to be huge. Mass Effect used to be huge. One remembers Mass Effect plastered at every bus stop weeks before the game’s release. It was one of the biggest properties in gaming. Then the quality of the games went way down, and Bioware stopped developing original gaming properties. The studio is tired and moribund, and it has become increasingly irrelevant to gamers. The doctors have long since departed, and now we have Andromeda being developed by losers like Manveer Heir, and written by a Mary Sue blogger named Sam Maggs – the girl who claimed to have been virtually raped in Grand Theft Auto 5. Bioware probably will not be around at the end of 2017, but at any rate Mass Effect: Andromeda sure is shaping up to be a blast!
Final Affront XV
How does Square Enix manage to do it? Every single time that one thinks they have undermined their games to the greatest extent imaginable, Square Enix seemingly goes out of their way to prove this author wrong by fucking up even worse. So Final Fantasy Versus XIII is releasing six years late, and is now called Final Fantasy XV. Ok. Given the original plans of Versus XIII one fully expected an action battle system, so that is fine – or rather it would be if it was not awful and janky crap. Ok, whatever. Then there are the completely terrible game mechanics that Square Enix are saddling players with: the inability to run for more than ten seconds, having to constantly refuel the car, and tying the player’s inventory to the car’s boot! None of those things will make the game more fun to play, quite the opposite in fact. Now this week Square Enix has announced the game’s ‘Season Pass’!! Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that Square Enix have announced that there will be a season pass, it is right here on PSN, yet the page lists precisely none of the features or content that this pass will enable:
“The Season Pass allows you to download additional content. This Upgrade is a special deal for customers who have already preordered the FINAL FANTASY XV digital edition.”
This instantly calls to mind the rumours that Lusipurr.com reported on several weeks ago that claimed that development of Final Fantasy XV was so severely behind schedule that the team had not yet even begun to think of DLC [let alone a fucking Season Pass]. So Square Enix has no idea what will go into the Season Pass, yet they still put one up for pre-order because Final Fantasy XV is too big not to. In fact Square Enix are probably still deliberating upon what content can be cut from the finished game in order to satisfy this Season Pass. Just another way that Square Enix inspires us to buy in confidence!
Square Enix Exploits Dying Children
So what to do when Square Enix manages to inspire so much confidence that consumers begin to get cold feet? In such instances a strong PR game is required to combat the deleterious effect that excessive confidence in Square Enix is known to have upon the purchase intent of their customers. Done and done, Square Enix has got this! Square Enix needs to rehabilitate their brand image, along with the brand image of Final Fantasy XV, and what better way is there to successfully project a good public image than to leverage dead and dying children as part of the marketing campaign? Final Fantasy XV is a ‘fantasy based on reality’, and so Square Enix is teaming up with the Make-A-Wish Foundation in order to make these dying children’s fantasies a reality during the month of September – timed to coincide with the launch of Final Fantasy XV. Square Enix is literally exploiting dying children as one of the prongs in their marketing push:
“Inspired by its upcoming game FINAL FANTASY® XV, which is set in a fantastical world of intrigue and wonder but grounded in reality, Square Enix plans to flip the script with this partnership, transforming wish kids’ fantasies into reality. Square Enix will launch the initiative alongside Make-A-Wish this September. The two companies will share additional details in the coming weeks, as well as the inspiring stories of the kids they have the great joy to impact.”
To make things quite clear, the Make-A-Wish Foundation does excellent work, and establishing corporate partnerships with companies like Square Enix forms a vital part of their operations – so there is nothing wrong with that. The issue here is that Square Enix has not only timed this to coincide with the launch of Final Fantasy XV, but they are also representing this initiative with the ‘fantasy based on reality’ tagline inherent to that game. The fact that they are leveraging these dying kids as part of the Final Fantasy XV marketing push is blatantly obvious, and this is something that the Lusipurr.com staff finds to be absolutely repellent. A good deed is not a good deed if done out of pure self-interest.