Nintendo Sends Media Game with a Racial Surprise

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News Posted: Fri, Dec 5 2008 1:00 PM

Nintendo wanted to show off the Character Importer feature of Animal Crossing: City Folk for the Wii. To do so, it sent media pre-played copies of the old (2005) DS game, Animal Crossing: Wild World, with much of the content unlocked. Unfortunately, it appears whoever played the games added a surprise Nintendo never intended.



Both MTV Multiplayer and Kotaku posted that their games contained what some might consider a racial slur, and others just chatting with your homeboy. Part of the Animal Crossing: Wild World gameplay is the ability to customize greetings from characters, and thus both sites reported seeing the following greetings from Baabara (a sheep):
"I almost forgot about you, N***a"
"So got any juicy gossip for me, N***a?"
"Just thinking about it gets me all excited, N***a."
1Up received the following apology from Nintendo:
"Previously played copies of the 2005 DS game Animal Crossing: Wild World were sent to 14 members of the media to demonstrate the ability of players to transfer items to the new Animal Crossing: City Folk for Wii. We regret that an offensive phrase was included without our knowledge via a wireless function that allows user-generated catchphrases to spread virally from one game to the next. This version is limited to 14 copies created for media review purposes only and is not available at retailers. We sincerely apologize for the incident and are working with media who received the game cards to return them to Nintendo immediately."


We don't find this to be something that should cause huge amounts of criticism for Nintendo. It's not as though it was part of the game from the start, and it's something that, due to the customizability of the game, could be done to anyone's copies after sale. It's obviously bound to embarrass them and cause at least one employee to join the ranks of the unemployed, though.  Image above via MTV Multiplayer.



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It's probably very hard for Nintendo to moderate every game, especially ones with fully customisable content, although they could've sent new copies to the media instead.

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I saw this a while or so ago. I thought I agree that it does not belong in a Nintendo game the situation is quite entertaining.Stick out tongue

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It's quite harmless, but kinda funny.  Hopefully the term was used completely light heartily. :)

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AjayD replied on Sat, Dec 6 2008 7:31 AM

I don't see what the problem is. Is Nintendo supposed to make it so any word that someone may find offensive, regardless of the context, can't be entered into any of their games? It's not like this is the default greeting that Nintendo has set for the game. If I set my user account name for Windows as that, would Microsoft be to blame? I think not. Admittedly, Nintendo shouldn't have been such a penny pincher, and just sent out new games instead.

You would think people would have better things to do, other than going out of their way to be offended.

 

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AjayD:

Nintendo shouldn't have been such a penny pincher, and just sent out new games instead.

They sent out used games on purpose:

"Nintendo wanted to show off the Character Importer feature of Animal Crossing: City Folk for the Wii. To do so, it sent media pre-played copies of the old (2005) DS game, Animal Crossing: Wild World, with much of the content unlocked."

But I think the lesson is that Nintendo should have done a little playtesting on the copies before unleashing them to the media.  To me it's akin to sending in a term paper with typos - just a little laziness on Nintendo's part.  But if that one sheep character is the only one that says that, then I suppose it would be hard to find lest we have people testing everything in used games before sening them out to media.  But then again how often are used games needed, so on second thought there's no lesson at all.  It just happened and it's kinda funny.Big Smile

 

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