I’ve seen nothing but good things written about Galactic Cafe’s Stanley Parable, but creator Davey Wreden has received two complaints in regard to a specific pair of images found in the game’s instructional video on choice. While two people being offended is hardly cause for concern, Wreden has decided to change the sequence, removing the images.
The video explains how a character, named Steven, can choose to help an impoverished nation, and we see him lighting a cigarette for a child wearing tattered clothes, or he can set orphans on fire, and we see him dousing the child in gasoline. It’s a cartoon and exceptionally silly, but made at least two people uncomfortable.
Oliver Campbell, one of the offended folk, found the images to be racist, and informed Wreden to let him know how they made him feel. I can see how, if taken seriously, the cartoon depictions could be considered unpleseant, but I’m uncertain as to how they are racist. The child is black and clearly impoverished, while Steven is white and well dressed, but there’s not even a hint of bigotry present.
Wreden explains that the complaints caught him off guard, but Campbell took the time to tell him why it was racist and how he could fix his game. ” It took a bit of explanation,” Campbell tellsPolygon, “but he did understand the nature of my complaint, and I offered ways of fixing this without destroying the joke or a prohibitively expensive additional amount of work. He explained that he didn’t quite understand, but was more than willing to listen, and that it’s very hard for a creative to figure out which player requests to pay attention to.”
The visual gag isn’t very important, Wreden says, so he has no problem changing it. “It doesn’t make or break anything about that particular section, and we always wanted the game to be something that could be played by anyone of any age. If a person would feel less comfortable showing the game to their children then I’ve got no problem helping fix that! It’s really as simple as that.”
Wreden hopes to make the changes in an update soon.