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nyleken

Wildlands: Too Jingoistic?

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I've read some comments on reddit that express some dismay at Wildland's apparent jingoistic nature, especially concerning the insertion of JSOC operatives into an actual Latin American country. This one user even admits that they felt uncomfortable watching the trailer

 

What do you think? Should Wildlands dial down on its jingoism? Personally I think it's a bit of a non-issue, especially since it's a Tom Clancy game and they're not known for their nuanced depiction of geopolitics.

 

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I think, in all, it's a problem with virtually every shooter game out there presently, it's either america vs russia crap or jingoistic white savior crap. I think the best game that actually addresses the latter very well is Spec Ops: The Line, personally I think it's a non-issue, but in the wider spectrum of things it might prove a little more worthwhile to pay attention to this tone in shooters as a whole, avoiding any direct political opinions i'll refrain from talking specifics. 

Edited by Zeealex
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Funnily enough, I think the whole trend you speak of originates from Tom Clancy himself. Red Storm Rising, anyone?

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The US vs Russia thing arises from remaining Cold War tensions, Russia continuing to be a frequently destabilizing force, and them being the next biggest kid on the block. China is taking their place somewhat, but Russia as a geopolitical rival isn't changing anytime soon, in reality or fiction.

As for the "jingoistic white savior" perception, that's a product of a few things.

The jingoism isn't there. I doubt Colombia is going to send their spec ops guys into Bolivia, they have their own problems and they're neighbors. It'd be awkward to say the least. The cocaine goes to the US, and from there we go War on Drugs. Key to that is attacking the supply and punishing suppliers and consumers. USSOCOM does counter-narcotics operations, often with the DEA. And since the Bolivian government in this game is ineffective at best and collaborating with/corrupted by the bad guys at worst, it falls to the US to try and fix this problem. Hence the "savior" thing. But this isn't a humanitarian mission, and rescuing Bolivians from anarchy is secondary to removing bad guys making money by selling cocaine. It's Clear and Present Danger 2.0 and I'm okay with that.

As for the race aspect, I've long since been resigned to the fact that as far as minority representations in fiction go, I'm going to see more female, black and/or LGBT characters in prominent video game roles than hispanics like me. We're either an optional character in Rainbow Six (but one with the best stats) and great guy in the Clancy novels, #1 bro in Ghost Recon 2 and GRAW1/2, killed in Saints Row 2, or getting bossed around by Cpt. Foley in MW2. 

Look at Watch Dogs 1 and 2. Chicago is a split mostly between white, black and hispanic people. White protagonist, gotta play it safe to launch that new IP. Then again, Aiden was an unlikable psychopath and any group is hurt by his membership. 2 is going to be in San Francisco. Mostly whites and asians, 2% black (though to be fair, Oakland is right next door). Great chance to add an asian protag. Black protag instead. How many asian leads in western games? Faith is the only one I can think of. Now look at the obnoxious-looking 1337h4xx0r hipster protag wearing at least $4k of designer clothes. I'm supposed feel sorry for that guy? I know he's going to kill a lot of people and break loads of laws to prove he's innocent. That's hilariously counterintuitive as social commentary. 

If I have to choose between playing as a white guy broing it up with someone who looks like me, or playing a game that stars someone who looks like me but features the poorly-done social commentary I've come to expect from modern video games, I'll happily choose the former. Being hispanic doesn't define me.

Edited by TJbrena

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What do I think? For me its not a problem at all; games with real world plot lines are no different than going to the movies or reading a book. If I feel strongly enough about it, I will not support it, no money to the book, game, or movie. I wouldn't feel the urge to tell anyone else to adopt the same stance though.

It's a game with a fictional plot line.

Interesting discussion though, thanks nyleken.

 

Edited by Rocky
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Within the context of the game it would seem acceptable to have operatives who better resemble the indigenous people.... Or add a character from said country as a liason or already embedded operative...

As for the main villain, the head of the snake is the critical aspect.. Or the lieutenants at least.,

Race representation is not a big issue as long as you establish your villains beyond a simple "hes a bad foaming at the mouth" villain... If the villain is conveyed as having a "valid" point of view then i feel it would go over better.... Like Medellins perspective of Escobar

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Too jingoistic? Not at all. It's a game, The trailer is designed to set a scene, and cocaine wars never get old for me. 

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Ah well  i think it would be interesting to compare some opinions i've read in the net if the game focused on a bolivian SF team freely working in the USA to combat  a criminal organization, "judges" deciding "who will live and who will die" in the mix, but yes of course it's just a game and everything.

Edited by thales100

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