Reagan to appear in video game, giving orders for war crimes

Thomas Veil

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Ronald Reagan sends you to do war crimes in the latest Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War trailer

Activision and its development studios, Treyarch and Raven Software, debuted a new trailer for the upcoming Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, and it happens to feature a somewhat eerie and unexpected new character in the series: actual President Ronald Reagan....
Incorporating a real-life historical and political figure — one whose tenure still has controversial effects on modern-day politics, including the imminent 2020 election — is definitely a move. It’s an even weirder one when you consider what the trailer has Reagan doing: ordering you, the player, and your fellow clandestine operatives to essentially break the law and commit potential war crimes in order to save the “free world.”

I read this and did a WTF?

I get that lots of games and movies and such are about antiheroes working outside the law. I’m not here to about the ethics or morality of that.

But using a real life figure? I dunno...

Let me be clear. I didn’t like Ronald Reagan. At all. I thought that benign grandpa act was phony as a $3 bill. If Trump is the potential end of America, Reagan was the beginning of the end. You can connect the dots between then and now.

But using a real person in this manner? It just bothers me.

I’m not a gamer so I don’t know if this has been done before (sounds like it hasn’t), but once you open that Pandora’s box, it’s hard to close. Would you want to see Barack Obama in a game about a nuclear war? Or maybe the My Lai massacre turned into a game?

Traditionally unless it’s a historical story, entertainment has used euphemistic stand-ins for real life people, and it works out fine. I’d hate to see this start a trend. What do you think? Cool or tacky?


What the F?!!!
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You can add a certain tone deafness from the company UBISoft as well.

Today Ubisoft announced it will remove raised fist imagery from the opening cinematic of its new mobile game, Tom Clancy’s Elite Squad, following widespread criticism that the game’s intro plays on right-wing conspiracies about the Black Lives Matter movement.

Elite Squad, which came out on iOS and Android earlier this week, begins with a narrated video laying out the game’s premise, which paints protest movements as fronts for an organization called UMBRA, a global terrorist network trying to take over the world. Protestors “claim to promote an egalitarian utopia to gain popular support; while behind the scenes UMBRA organizes deadly terrorist attacks to generate even more chaos and weaken governments,” the narrator says at one point, as a series of black raised fists appear on screen.

The raised fist has a long history, including in anti-racism movements, and has been one of the central symbols of the ongoing Black Lives Matter protests against police violence, most recently since the killing of George Floyd in May. According to a description of the game’s campaign, players “Recruit elite soldiers from every corner of the world, including [the] criminal underworld, to put an end to UMBRA’s campaign of chaos.” This opening leans into alt-right conspiracies around the Black Lives Matter protests and other justice movements, which cast them as fronts for a shadow organization trying to destabilize world governments.

Mind you this is after the company has been dealing with it's own internal issues.



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When did the world move away from D&D and fantasy type RPG towards the genre where it’s open warfare? This indicates a sickness of our society.


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As if gamer culture wasn't toxic enough already... although this view of Reagan isn't new - the original Batman: The Dark Knight Returns graphic novel comes to mind... but from a critical point of view instead of a seemingly positive one.

Action movies and video games often celebrate the rogue hero(es) that have to "bend the rules" for justice. Are we surprised people celebrate armed vigilantes and a President that breaks the law for the good of his personal fortunes and supposedly his hard-core supporters?
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