And as Takeuchi went on to explain that the enemies with the grass skirts and spears were seeking to defend the ruins from intruders and that he’d been inspired by the Indiana Jones movies, I felt like I once again understood where he’d been coming from. That a two-to-three-week trip to unspecified African countries and looking at a number of movies set in Africa alongside pop-cultural inspirations like the Indiana Jones series simply hadn’t been enough to sufficiently educate him or the team about the legacy of the imagery that they were tapping in to and, as a result, they’d lost control of their message. That’s my take on it, of course; I doubt that the man who sat across from me and thoughtfully answered all of my questions would agree. But if his muse should inspire him to set another game in an African country – or any real-world location, for that matter – my only wish is that he do so in as fully informed a manner as possible.
“Perhaps a better way to explain it without using race, ethnicity or country of origin would be this: Imagine a sequel to the 1999 movie Fight Club, in which a woman was throwing punches and getting beaten up by men. We could say: “Well, it’s the same thing: Fight Club showed Edward Norton getting beaten up; now we’re showing a woman getting beaten up.” But the history and imagery surrounding women being beaten by men is not the same. You cannot simply say that they’re equivalent.”
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