Epic WTF

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  • !Que bien!

  • Casual racism, how hilarious.

  • No, the games studio is Mexican (name should have been a clue). Just weirdness. It seems to be deliberately written in Anime vlsual style and I suspect aspects of Japanese games culture are also being referenced. Ever played a JRPG?

  • No, the games studio is Mexican

    It’s more complex than that, and the game studio being Mexican doesn’t excuse it. Sorry to cast a cloud on a game, but IMO it’s racist.

  • The opinion of a Mexican might be more valid, it would be rather a shame if you were being outraged on behalf of people who are not.

  • ;)

    • not really sure how to reply to this. Does one person from a victimised group being ok with racism make it ok? If we had a Mexican on here who thought it was racist, which Mexican’s opinion is more valid?
  • What chocolate do they eat at Mexican funerals?

    Sombre Aeros.

  • IMO it’s racist.

    Are you even sure who it's racist against? The Japanese would have more claim on the basis of cultural appropriation.

    There's a very small Mexican game studio doing a combination school simulator and mystery game. The mystery part has some rather odd plotlines (possibly again a Japanese influence). You have seen one picture from one of those plotlines, you have no idea of the context - no idea why a Mexican schoolgirl is wearing a joke costume - but you've decided it's racism. On.. what?

    If it were a British game developer showing a British schoolgirl dressed as a beefeater or stereotypical cockney or Morris dancer, would that be racist? It wouldn't. It might well be classist, depending on the treatment, but that's the worst of it.

    The irony here is that you made patronising assumptions without even looking properly at the original images, let alone investigating the game. You didn't notice the Spanish language name of the studio and, having had that pointed out, you clearly haven't gone and looked to find out any more.

    In fact, the picture I showed isn't one where a silly/stereotypical costume is part of the plot, it's one of many pictures you could find (if you had ever bothered to look) showing the character personalisation options, of which they have a huge number, of which sombrero is just one option amongst pink hair, a pantomime horse head, angel wings, fake moustache (which doesn't automatically come with the sombrero) and a host of more ordinary options. The game dev has been continuously showing different game features on the Play Store page as they update the game. A little while ago it included the still I showed above, now it's a different set , tomorrow or the day after it may be something different again. All of which you could have easily figured out if you had gone and looked.

  • I’m working on a reply. It’s not an easy issue to break down.

  • How about we say the pictures of Mexican highschool simulator out of context in the wtf thread could certainly be read as casual racism with its apparent Mexican tropes and odd style, however when looked at as a game as a whole, and one by a Mexican studio, and pointed at me based on a previous discussion in another thread about similar weird games, it's not actually racist.

  • Right, I can reply properly now, at least in part. I’m going out of my way to explain my view, and I’m assuming good faith on your behalf to have a real dialogue, because like I said it’s complex. I’d appreciate the same courtesy, although I’d prefer to keep it somewhat brief, for many reasons.

    Why are the image and joke racist?

    It’s not any one element that makes it racist, but the image seen as a whole, is. The elements are:

    1) The Aztec female name Citlali being chosen for the speaker. Indigenous names aren’t very common in Mexico, particularly outside of the indigenous peoples and Central Mexico; Citlali isn’t uncommon among the ones used. A far more common name in Mexico is Maria, or Ana, but the author specifically chose an indigenous name. In a country where most people are mixed race (mestizo), the groups who have kept more direct cultural and familial ties to their indigenous past are known as the indigenas. It’s relatively safe to say that the majority of Mexican indigenas today are brown-skinned, average or short height (generational nutrition issues), low-income workers or subsistence farmers. They face rampant overt, systemic and unconscious discrimination in every sphere of life: e.g., a common school ground saying in north and central Mexico when someone was being daft or stupid was ‘No seas indio’, don’t be an Amerindian (or indígena). Their men and women have historically been depicted as ugly, uneducated and, insultingly for the women, moustachioed. After independence from Spain in 1821, this social group become broadly known as the indigenado.

    2) The large hat colloquially known as a Mexican sombrero (sombrero literally means hat) is part of a stereotypical iconography rooted in the late 19th century, when rural workers would wear large hats as specific equipment to protect themselves from the sun. People who weren’t field workers wouldn’t normally wear those hats, and the high-income strata wouldn’t be caught dead in one (exceptions apply). A large number of these rural workers were the indigenado. At the time of the Mexican Revolution (civil war) in 1917, socialist revolutionary leaders like Emiliano Zapata, themselves indigenas, re-branded this low-income social group as the campesinado (derived from campesino which means subsistence farmer or peasant), to focus attention away from their shared but fragmented cultural and genetic background (indigenas) and towards their cohesive socioeconomic background (generationally exploited labourers, as the vast majority were indentured labourers at rich people’s haciendas, although it was against the law). It’s at this time that the depiction of the moustachioed, sombrero-wearing, bandolier carrying, brown-skinned Mexican starts becoming iconic, with Diego Rivera et al helping popularise the image for mass education via public murals.

    The other source of the sombrero icon is The Sleeping Mexican, aka Pancho in the SW USA. This icon appeared around the same time as the revolutionary above, but is depicted as lying against a cactus, sombrero over his face, often wearing a poncho. The Sleeping Mexican started as a symbol in hotels and public resting places, with the Mexican sleeping in his field work clothes against a cactus because he had been doing hard labour for hours and was taking a deserved rest.

    Both these symbols were co-opted initially in the US around the 1940’s and 50’s, with ever more grotesque depictions and figurines entering the zeitgeist. The Sleeping Mexican in particular was perverted to represent a notion of a lazy, dirty, uneducated, assumed to be drunk or high Mexican. This happened for a variety of reasons, but specifically because of racist sociopolitical pressure in the US against hard-working and oft-exploited Mexican field hands, as well as Mexican-Americans whose families have been living in, e.g., Texas since before there was a USA.

    3) The thick moustache. Common style for men at turn of the 19th century, but racists in the US commonly depict Latino and LatinX women with moustaches. In Mexico, indígena women are often insultingly imagined as having hairy lips / moustaches. See other points above, I don’t think I need to spell it out further.

    4) The tacos. Seen by racists and the ignorant in the US as an unsophisticated, dirty, cheap, finger food. Along with economical food such as rice and beans, it’s been the favoured dish of exploited Mexican ex-pat labourers in the US since the Braseros Program allowed hundreds of thousands of field hands to work in the US in the mid 20th C. I find it interesting that no one in the US seems to question why such cheap foods were so prevalent with Mexicans in the US when other options were presumably available. In Europe it’s basically just associated with Mexico, but consider the wider context.

    The fact that a Mexican authored the image and joke, or that Mexicans sell ridiculous versions of the icons to mass tourists, or that many Mexicans laugh at it themselves, doesn’t make it not racist. The fact that Mexicans laugh at this sort of joke is evidence of a lack of understanding of the historical background, a coping mechanism for dealing with foreign aggression (US and European racism), a way of distancing themselves from the specific social groups from whom the icons originated, and proof of deeply entrenched racism and classism in Mexico.

    I have to get to work and will probably amend and clarify this later, but probably not until Monday.

  • in the wtf thread

    This... It is LITERALLY IN THE WFT THREAD... Therefore appropriate.

    SO - high horse and all (aimed at Eseman)

  • Also - high horse and all (aimed at Eseman)

    Excuse you? Please explain.

  • Shouting out racist when its in the EPIC WTF thread for that very discussion


  • Did I call anyone here racist, at any point in my replies? I said it was casual racism meaning the game, not the posters.

    I spent my morning writing my response to help you guys understand something understandably foreign to you.

    High horse…smh, and now climbs aboard a horse.

  • The internalised stuff about indigenous people is interesting (and obviously shitty), ta. Probably something we all missed, although I recognised the stereotypical sombrero and taco stuff and it's a game and that kinda thing is all over these kind of games, not always in a bad way, there's some that take subjects like that and flip them around to make you think, plenty are just lazy though. Either way I've not got round to boyfriend dungeon yet so I doubt I'll ever help this person find their tacos if I've not tried to bang a dagger or whatever in that because I'm learning about Greek myth instead.

  • Thanks for going to the trouble of writing this up, I certainly found it insightful.

  • You're being really fucking disingenuous here. Don't characterise @Eseman 's response as shouting - you're the one using caps, his original post was calm and proportionate. He's taken the time to exlain his response - carefully and in detail - so why not have the courtesy to read it and respond accordingly, if you don't agree?

    He opened that post with

    I’m going out of my way to explain my view, and I’m assuming good faith on your behalf to have a real dialogue, because like I said it’s complex.

  • Fair point. Most of us weren't considering the internal race mechanics within Mexico.

  • disingenuous

    adj. Not straightforward or candid; insincere or calculating.
    adj. Pretending to be unaware or unsophisticated; faux-naïf.
    adj. Unaware or uninformed; naive.

    His original post could have implied that he thinks those that posted it, or responded to it are being racist. Im not sure how you think im being disingenuous unless its uninformed or naive (which is possible).

    I am pointing out that the original post that lead to the mexican post has all been in the Epic WTF thread, normally around things about "WTF, theres a game you can dungeon crawl AND date your weapon" and "WTF, how can someone be so racist."

    The irony here is that you made patronising assumptions

    this is what i took away from this...

    And you were right, he wasnt shouting... It seemed like he was accussing all of us as racists. He was not, it is fine.

    carry on

  • Pretty sure I saw that guy commuting down Euston road one day. Seen similar except a 2 stroke strapped to an old mtb doing at least 30mph round Newington Green and the guy wasn't even wearing a helmet.

  • You were being disingenuous by saying that he was "shouting out racist" when you've admitted that he wasn't.

    Whatever his original post "could have implied", he took the time to very carefuly clarify why he made that post. You could have responded to that.

  • I think there was a momentary sniff of a pile on... Great post, @Eseman!

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Epic WTF

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