The Rainbow Six female hostage yet again appears to be pointing to sexism among the ranks at Ubisoft. It looks like the Montreal publisher just can’t catch a break from the press this year.
The first wave began when gamers noticed that Watch Dogs featured a rather stereotypical African-American gang. The alleged racism bared its full face toward the end of the game when you went to retrieve some information from the Black Viceroys’ militant leader Anthony “Iraq” Wade, and rap music started blaring in the background.
Ubisoft has been facing similar accusations ever since, mostly concerning their use or lack of females in their games.
Far Cry 4 was the second game to draw accusations when it appeared from the box art that a Caucasian male was sitting with his hand on a dark-skinned man’s head, an image allegedly indicating slavery. Ubisoft replied by stating that the man in the chair was not white, but in fact a Middle Eastern or Indian villain from a fictional nation.
Rainbow Six: Siege‘s female hostage isn’t the first time Ubisoft has been accused of sexism either.
In the announcement trailer for Assassin’s Creed: Unity, female assassins were noticeably absent, despite the fact that a prominent female was instrumental in the French Revolution. Ubisoft again responded, this time saying it was too much work to add female assassins due to details surrounding animation, voice acting, and such. They also stated that every player in the co-op mode would be playing a different version of the main character.
Gamers seem to be forgetting the fact that Assassin’s Creed: Liberation starred an African American female assassin in Louisiana.
It could be that Ubisoft simply has too many high profile games being made and the lack of female lead characters in video games today is being blamed on them as a result. Rise of the Tomb Raider, Sunset Overdrive, and the InFamous: First Light DLC all feature female leads, as well as the re-release of Mirror’s Edge, but the press doesn’t seem to think that’s enough.
— VG247 (@VG247) June 24, 2014
Rainbow Six‘s female hostage drew fire not because the game lacked a female character, but because it literally turns a woman into an object to be possessed. Technically Ubisoft appears to be simply trying to get away from capturing “the flag” over and over.
Ubisoft’s technical artist Oliver Couture explained about the Rainbow Six damsel in distress:
“I know some people asked about the hostage in the demo. I mean, when we did that design we felt a lot of empathy with the hostage. We wanted people to want to protect her. If the hostage gets killed a team loses the game, so we wanted players to care about the hostage so that’s the design we chose. But we’re also gonna have male hostages. That’s part of the plan.”
Knowing this, does the Rainbow Six: Siege female hostage still strike you as sexist, or are we simply blaming Ubisoft for an industry-wide trend?
[image via shortandsweetreviews]