For those of you who may not have heard, animal rights activist group and hyperbole headline machine PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Anmials), are up to their old antics. In an attempt to stay relevant by making very formal and very loud complaints about innocuous use of animals in just about anything, they have found a way to make recent gaming media headlines by complaining that in Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag, there is a minigame where pirate Edward Kenway engages in missions involving a whaling minigame.
“Whaling – that is, shooting whales with harpoons and leaving them to struggle for an hour or more before they die or are hacked apart while they are still alive – may seem like something out of the history books, but this bloody industry still goes on today in the face of international condemnation, and it’s disgraceful for any game to glorify it.”
Now, never mind the fact that Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag is a game where the sole job of the lead protagonist is to stealthily murder people, I seriously doubt the game is “glorifying” whaling. Much like in Assassin’s Creed 3, there was slavery, I seriously doubt that the Ubisoft Montreal team was “glorifying” slavery. It was just a thing that was going on during the time of the storyline of Assassin’s Creed 3. It would be like the NAACP picketing the Oscars over the inclusion of slavery in the movie “Lincoln” (okay, maybe a bit of an extreme example, but you get my drift).
Well, Ubisoft responded to PETA’s complaint by drafting up the most pleasant of public relation middle fingers, more or less telling them to “chill out” in not so many words:
“History is our playground in Assassin’s Creed. Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag is a work of fiction that depicts the real events during the golden era of pirates. We do not condone illegal whaling, just as we don’t condone a pirate lifestyle of poor hygiene, plundering, hijacking ships, and over-the legal-limit drunken debauchery.”
How pleasant. It’s almost as if Ubisoft isn’t telling PETA where it can shove it’s complaint.
Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag is due to release later this year for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC, Wii U, PlayStation 4, and presumably the next Xbox.