Many years ago, when Resident Evil 5 from Capcom was first announced and revealed with a trailer, most people noticed how awesome the game looked. But some people chose to view the game differently... looking at it superficially. But not just "wow the game has sexy graphics it must be amazing" type of superficial... but by the colour of people's skins.
So as a result of black zombies in Africa (which is populated by a strong majority of black people), Resident Evil 5 is decried as racist by race-baiters across the Internet. These are punks looking to get hits on their websites and make a name for themselves. That concept may seem familiar to you, the reader, and that's probably why you're here. Well here's the difference between those people (dun dun dun) and me.
I've actually been in the field and made something. And that something? People also think it's racist — they look at it and think, "The maker of this is a hater of black people." And that couldn't be further from the truth. It just so happens that every character Little Mac fights against is black. But that's not because I'm a racist or anyone else on my staff is a racist. That's simply a product of the fact that Trayvon Martin's friends who testified in the trial were all black. If Chad Joseph or Rachel Jeantel were white, then there would be three black bosses in Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! and two white bosses. But we gotta work with what we got, so coincidentally everyone Mac fights is black. Honestly it might've been an even more interesting story were some of the people white because some of Sharpnard's dialogue would've changed, but in terms of gameplay everything would be exactly the same.
If you beat the game — if you haven't, go do so (which means that what I'm about to say is a SPOILER) — then you would see the credits and the character endings. With the exception of Mad King Sharpnard (who died) and Rachel Jeantel, every black character in the game has a very sympathetic character ending. Meanwhile, the one white character in the game who immediately thinks of things just in terms of race (Mac's trainer, Adam Pollock) lives the rest of his life in misery. Go ended up completing school and getting married. Chad realized the value of saving and bought a PlayStation 4. Unfortunately, he fell victim to videogame addiction because it wasn't properly recognized as an addiction. That has nothing to do with race or how we feel about Chad but a small commentary on the mental health system in the country. The Hooded Protestor who stole Mac's bike (which is obviously a reference to that meme) tried to apologize to Little Mac and also got his GED. Rachel Jeantel's ending is pretty bad, but she does at least get a job at the end. Trayvon himself gets the most sympathetic ending out of everyone, with it specifically wishing him to rest in peace and deeming him an icon. It expresses how unfortunate it is that people like Sharpnard took advantage of his death for their own greed. Sharpnard himself died of course, but his ending portrays a desegregated happy world. That's portrayed as the ideal future. If the game was racist, why would it have that idyllic ending? Of course, Little Mac himself is not anything close to racist and is the most level-headed character in the game. He's career-oriented and is clearly not an ideologue, only snapping at Sharpnard in the end because Sharpnard is clearly despicable. And that ending situation was pretty horrible, because Mac sees people as individuals while Mad King Sharpnard sees them as a collective mob to be controlled.
People have written before about the lack of racial diversity of characters in games. It's definitely true, there is a lack of diversity if you do a study on it. It happens that if you would include Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! into that, the amount of diversity, on average across the industry, increases. We don't just have one black dude and have him be the Token Black Guy. We have a diverse range of minorities with diverse personalities. One of the posters on GameFAQs said,
"I'm sick of studies. I'm black and I swear if one more person tries to "defend" my race through television, race, books, or hell even black history month. I personally see no reason for it in this day and age. I saw a point for it in the past, but you can't want true racism to disappear while still have a month like that. I have in depth points, but I don't want to get to far off the subject.
When it comes to games the characters should be likeable. I shouldn't play Uncharted, look at Drake and be like "Why don't they ever have an black explorers." No I just look and be like "What an awesome psycho adventurer." If you demand more black characters play Fallout or Oblivion and have fun or quit gaming."
Chad was designed to be the most cool character in Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!!. He's my favourite, anyway. Even the racist Pollock feels compassion for the hard-working family man Go. KoopaTV is actually doing the industry a favour here. And if you want, for whatever reason, racial representation in videogames to equal that of racial representation in real life, then there should be a lot more black antagonists in videogames. For example, the Black Knight in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance could've been a black guy beneath that armour, but it was really a white dude. I've written before on egalitarianism and character representation. Maybe you should read it.
For another perspective, let's listen to Congress of Racial Equality member Niger Innis.
On this Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. day, let us reflect on the other game KoopaTV claims to be responsible for: Jessie Go Jr. Remedial Algebra, which Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. actually appears in. In... one forme or another.
That's the final boss music, by the way. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is well-respected around these parts and especially in that game.
Anyway, we all know what I really prefer. I like it when games star non-human, non-racial characters. But there are always some people who try to look at everything racially.
|When I asked him what does it matter, he blocked me.|
Apparently the Mario games are about the oppression of Goombas (who represent black people) by their Koopa slavemasters (white people) and how they're being stomped on by Mario (systemic racism in society) even after they're "liberated" from the tyrannical Koopas (treatment of blacks post Civil War). Goomba settlements post-war — even if segregated from the rest of the community — are similarly invaded and ruined by the Koopa forces in an effort to bring them down, such as Goomba Village in Paper Mario (the Civil Rights era). The infrastructure of Goomba Village and the infrastructure and commerce of Toad Town are clearly different, and you see almost no effort of desegregation between the two (separate-but-equal).
Or you could see what I just wrote as a load of crap. I could go on and on (I almost want to for fun) but you can make connections out of anything. That's the entire basis of literature class in school, after all. Kids are trained to do this at an early age: Is it any wonder that people race-bait EVERYTHING, then? We should be conscious of this, though, and reject that mentality everywhere we encounter it. Especially in the young videogame industry.
Oh, let me anticipate and answer an objection from the crowd: Why did you even make Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! to begin with? I spoke of having restrictions on the property, but we chose the property knowing the restrictions to begin with. If you want to really know the origins of it, look no further than this July 12 2013 (a day before the Zimmerman trial verdict was announced) conversation:
[Koopa Keep] (1:25:01 AM): Oh guys
[Koopa Keep] (1:25:10 AM): http://i.imgur.com/g8HMfb.jpg
[Koopa Keep] (1:25:11 AM): look
Nintendork 13 13 (1:25:21 AM): bahaha
[Koopa Keep] (1:26:35 AM): rofl
[Koopa Keep] (1:28:42 AM): we should make that
[Koopa Keep] (1:28:45 AM): in scratch
[Koopa Keep] (1:28:55 AM): You up to the task Ludwig?
Nintendork 13 13 (1:29:08 AM): wot about Jessie Go Jr. Ace Attorney
[Koopa Keep] (1:29:18 AM): Trayvon Tyson's Remedial Punch-Out! first.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:29:22 AM): (Well Punch-Out!! is literally scripted so it can't be that hard)
Nintendork 13 13 (1:29:29 AM): Trayvon Tyson's?
[Koopa Keep] (1:29:35 AM): yes
[Koopa Keep] (1:30:20 AM): We keep the Jr. for DK Jr's Math so we keep the Tyson for Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!
Nintendork 13 13 (1:30:42 AM): wot about Mr. Dream
[Koopa Keep] (1:30:59 AM): Zimmerman
[Koopa Keep] (1:31:11 AM): Trayvon Tyson > Mr. Trayvon/Trayvon Dream
Nintendork 13 13 (1:31:34 AM): Mr. Trayvon has a ring to it
[Koopa Keep] (1:31:45 AM): Trayvon Tyson has alliteration
Nintendork 13 13 (1:31:53 AM): by the way I'm not crazy
[Koopa Keep] (1:31:53 AM): And we want to paint Trayvon as being like Mike Tyson.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:32:03 AM): Punch-Out!! has to exclamation points\
[Koopa Keep] (1:32:08 AM): Trayvon will bite Zimmerman's ear off.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:32:09 AM): like Double Dash!!.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:32:11 AM): wtf
Nintendork 13 13 (1:32:17 AM): I thought we were playing as Mac
[Koopa Keep] (1:32:17 AM): Like Tyson did.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:32:22 AM): or as Trayvon
[Koopa Keep] (1:32:26 AM): um
[Koopa Keep] (1:32:35 AM): you don't play as mike tyson in the first punch out. >.>
Nintendork 13 13 (1:32:42 AM): so are we playing as Mac
[Koopa Keep] (1:32:48 AM): why not zimmerman?
Nintendork 13 13 (1:32:58 AM): Do you HAVE Zimmerman backsprites?
Nintendork 13 13 (1:33:05 AM): besides he can't fucking land a punch
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:12 AM): We'll use the Mac sprite and say it's Zimmerman.
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:18 AM): This is about his MMA training.
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:20 AM): Unless
Nintendork 13 13 (1:33:23 AM): (which I guess is where the "remedial" comes from)
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:26 AM): Mac decides to take up The Zimmerman Program.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:33:29 AM): LOL
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:30 AM): After watching the trial.
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:32 AM): Yeah.
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:33 AM): I like that.
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:47 AM): And no one knows Trayvon is alive.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:33:47 AM): Mac himself is a creepy ass cracker
Nintendork 13 13 (1:33:49 AM): he's like
Nintendork 13 13 (1:33:54 AM): half white
Nintendork 13 13 (1:33:58 AM): half hispanic
[Koopa Keep] (1:33:58 AM): But he experiences a MLK Jr.-styled resurrection or something.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:34:05 AM): in Punch-Out!! Wii
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:06 AM): To become the deus ex machina final boss.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:34:09 AM): So he turns into a zombie?
Nintendork 13 13 (1:34:10 AM): >_>;
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:10 AM): Like MLK did.
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:12 AM): Yes.
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:16 AM): rofl
Nintendork 13 13 (1:34:23 AM): wait I have to make other fights besides the Trayvon one?
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:25 AM): Guys.
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:29 AM): This has SERIOUS potential.
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:32 AM): Yes.
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:36 AM): One with Jeantel/.
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:40 AM): One with Chad Joseph
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:44 AM): and one with Trayvon
Nintendork 13 13 (1:34:47 AM): isn't this racist
[Koopa Keep] (1:34:51 AM): I thought it was Johnson
[Koopa Keep] (1:35:05 AM): Andy Pollock can be Doc Louis.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:35:09 AM): lol
[Koopa Keep] (1:35:23 AM): This may be our best idea in a loooooooong time.
Nintendork 13 13 (1:35:41 AM): ok
Nintendork 13 13 (1:35:43 AM): gimme sprites
Nintendork 13 13 (1:35:53 AM): (I can get Punch-Out!! sprites pretty easily)
For the record, [Koopa Keep] is both Rawk and YoshiRider123 in this log.
And if you're being astute, you may wonder what "Jessie Go Jr. Ace Attorney" is. That's actually Jessie Go Jr. Two. Anyway, so you might think, "Ah hah, they knew the racial implications all along! It was embedded into the fundamental design!" Well, as you can plainly see, Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! was directly inspired by that image Rawk found. Probably from 4chan, incidentally. The fact I brought up Mac's racial identity (the same way Adam Pollock does in the game) is just to go along with the idea that we don't need or have to have George Zimmerman as a playable character. You know, the "We'll use the Mac sprite and say it's Zimmerman" quote. Of course, Mac ended up being Mac and Zimmerman did end up in Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! as himself. Little Mac is not even close to a George Zimmerman proxy — he is his own character and the game is better for it. In fact, I'll state this just to reinforce the whole point of this article and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s vision: While Zimmerman and Little Mac are of the same racial background, they are almost complete opposites in personality.
George Zimmerman can't throw a punch. Little Mac is a professional boxer. Zimmerman constantly tries to get attention for himself. Little Mac barely even talks. In fact, just watch this hilarious MSNBC Al Sharpton clip where the clinical psychologist (or so he claims) Jeff Gardere basically describes George Zimmerman as The Phantom from Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies.
If we were to take this clip seriously (as intended by MSNBC and Al Sharpton), then Zimmerman is a narcissistic monster who sees the world as revolving around him who cannot feel emotions naturally and has to fake them like a "chameleon" (the chameleon line is the funniest part of this clip). Little Mac, on the other hand, reacts appropriately to situations. Well, he acts mild-mannered most of the time, as opposed to how everyone else is larger-than-life. He doesn't want to offend anyone, but he's also easily surprised at the many zany people and situations he encounters. In other words, none of this is natural to him. He copes by just treating it as a series of boxing matches. Meanwhile, George Zimmerman relishes the spotlight and larger-than-life situations. Completely different people — same race. But that race doesn't matter in the end, just like it doesn't matter in real life.
So let's try to end this article again: Stop race-baiting. Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! was a good idea to make because what inspired it were the larger-than-life characters during the Zimmerman trial that translate surprisingly well to the larger-than-life requirements of Punch-Out!!. And Resident Evil 5 features shooting black people because it's in Africa. That's all, folks. There is more to life and more interesting and deep analysis to make than just looking at the colour of someone's skin. That's what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. would think, too.
If you haven't noticed, Ludwig writes Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s name like that just like he writes out Barack Hussein Obama's name. Ludwig is somehow an expert on racial matters as an old white man himself. He also developed both Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! and Jessie Go Jr. Remedial Algebra, the latter of which exclusively only containing characters that are black. This happens to be KoopaTV's 200th article.
Al Sharpton is moving to a Sunday show format instead of a weekday format. How many more psychologists will he bring in from now on?
So-called diversity is also a collectivist race-baiting tactic.
For more information about the Black Knight and his identity, click here for his memorial!
Videogame addiction will finally be recognised as a disease.
Ludwig doesn't want to go into detail about the racial disparity involving Goombas, but his brother Morton does.