The Silence: Deep Silver Hiding From Torsogate

By John Walker on April 25th, 2013 at 5:00 pm.

As I mentioned a few days ago, a popular technique from publishers who want bad news stories to go away is to employ silence. Just pull down the shutters, switch off the lights, and sit on the floor below the window until everybody goes away. And RPS has had enough of that nonsense, so we’re taking silence to be a response worth reporting. Such is the case for Deep Silver, who as Adam revealed the other day are still selling their dismembered, bikinied torso statuette version of Dead Island: Riptide, despite having previously apologised for even considering doing so.

Whatever your feelings on the statuette, what makes this so interesting is the peculiar PR practices that got us to this point. Here’s how it went down:

On the 15th January, we received a press release telling us of this amazing special edition of Dead Island: Riptide, in which you would receive a dismembered torso of a woman as a statuette. Astonished that this was real, we posted about it, rather outraged, as did very many other gaming sites. There was a lot of internet noise, which came to an end when Deep Silver issued an apology for it later that same day. It read, in full:

“We deeply apologize for any offense caused by the Dead Island Riptide “Zombie Bait Edition”, the collector’s edition announced for Europe and Australia. Like many gaming companies, Deep Silver has many offices in different countries, which is why sometimes different versions of Collector’s Editions come into being for North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia.

For the limited run of the Zombie Bait Edition for Europe and Australia, a decision was made to include a gruesome statue of a zombie torso, which was cut up like many of our fans had done to the undead enemies in the original Dead Island.

We sincerely regret this choice. We are collecting feedback continuously from the Dead Island community, as well as the international gaming community at large, for ongoing internal meetings with Deep Silver’s entire international team today. For now, we want to reiterate to the community, fans and industry how deeply sorry we are, and that we are committed to making sure this will never happen again.”

That final paragraph seems pretty conclusive, yes? They “sincerely regret this choice” and they are “committed to making sure this will never happen again.” Well, as Adam pointed out earlier this week, no they weren’t. So what’s going on?

Why would a publisher make such a contrite, impassioned statement, and then just carry on regardless, selling the “Zombie Bait Edition” on Amazon and via GAME as if they’d never muttered a word? So we asked them, the day before yesterday. I sent an email to them, via their PR (who to the best of our knowledge has done his best to get a response for us), saying:

Could we get a statement from Deep Silver regarding the Dead Island torso? After their apology, it did seem rather like they wouldn’t be selling it. But of course they are.

So the question is, when saying,

“For now, we want to reiterate to the community, fans and industry how deeply sorry we are, and that we are committed to making sure this will never happen again.”

what did they mean? Because right now it looks like it was just a lie to make the story go away.

And, as you might have guessed, we’ve heard nothing back. Not a peep. Nor did we, I should add, back in January (although I think the email I sent might have read, “What the fuck are you thinking?!”).

And nor has anyone else, this time. There’s been no comment from the publisher since it was spotted that they were still selling the product they so deeply regretted and were so wholly sorry for having created. They’ve employed The Silence. The game is out, the thing’s on sale, so what do they care about talking to anyone about it?

So, yes, you can probably conclude that they’d had thousands of the things manufactured already, and didn’t want to lose a bunch of money on the things. And you can conclude that their apology at the time was completely insincere, and designed just to make the fuss die down while they were in full promotional swing for their game. A game, it turned out, that was pretty crap after all. But while there may be guessable reasons, cynical or otherwise, it remains the most bizarre behaviour to so openly and obviously deceive about something. What Deep Silver are failing to recognise is that trust does make a difference, and while companies like EA can swallow so much lost trust and survive, smaller publishers like them should surely be playing the game far more carefully than this?

Troublingly, Deep Silver are the publisher who got Saints Row out of the THQ jumble sale, a series that could so easily be hideously mishandled. And their attitude to this almighty mess is to pretend it’s not happening, to ignore the press they’ll certainly come running to when Metro: Last Light is about to release in a couple of weeks, and again when Saints Row 4 starts winding up its hype. It’s a very worrying attitude indeed.

We leave the ball in Deep Silver’s court. We’d love to report their statement on why the torso went on sale after they so heavily implied that it would not.

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414 Comments »

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  1. albertino says:

    This is my first post – I’m a long time reader/lurker around here. I’m compelled to voice my support for articles like this, alongside all the other supportive comments.

    With stuff like this being banded around, I feel that this industry is never going to shed the whole ‘video games are toys for immature little boys’ attitude that the public at large very much have. Besides the sexist connotations, this is damaging the growth of the industry as a whole.

    I can’t help think that it will have also damaged the sales of this game too – how many women would have been put off by this I wonder. Heck, I’m a guy and this is the proverbial nail in the coffin for me as I was otherwise tempted to buy. Further than that, this is the first thing that’s made me consider Metro:Last Light as not being a definite purchase too.

    Surely this kind of thing will put some women off the idea of working in the games industry at all, women who might have otherwise had a positive contribution to make to it.

    If you ask me, this is a damaging move by Deep Silver and it should not be allowed to go unchecked.

    • Eddy9000 says:

      Welcome to the comments board, you seem like a fine replacement for the couple of people here who have sworn never to read this site again. Close a door, open a window etc.

    • Grape Flavor says:

      Welcome to RPS, friend. And I agree with everything you said, providing that “it should not be allowed to go unchecked” meant that people should criticize Deep Silver, and not that Deep Silver doesn’t have the right to make whatever horrible bullshit they so please (and face the public’s wrath, of course).

      ;)

  2. Mitch says:

    How’s it going, John.

    Now correct me if I’m wrong, and I mean no offense, but you’re a pom, aren’t you?

    Did you stop and think maybe you should be asking us Aussies how we feel about this? It is here in Australia that this is being sold, isn’t it?

    Now I don’t know if you’ve played the game, mate, but you know there are a lot of Aussie characters in there. I mean most of the time everyone forgets we exist down here in Australia, or when they do remember they treat us like a bunch of larrakins. But this game has some Aussie characters and they’re some good ones, I think, and they treat us right. It might not mean much to you but I think the game has a bit of a fan base down here, you know?

    I mean I guess I see where you’re coming from but you should really be talking to some Aussies first. I’ll tell you right now, mate, here in Australia we think blokes and ladies are equal, you know. In terms of legally and you know, morally or what have you. I’m telling you I’ve lived here for near on forty years now and I’ve never met a fella who disagrees with that.

    And you know mate here in Australia we can poke fun and we can have a laugh without being too serious about it, you know what I mean, mate? I mean it’s a bloody game and it’s a gory game but it’s all just a bit of fun. This little statue is the same thing you know, mate, it’s nothing too serious. I’ll tell you right now mate, make a bloke’s version and I don’t think anyone down here has a problem with that, either. Heck mate, do one of a bloke’s downstairs and a zombie’s bitten his old fella off. Now that’d be funny! Maybe it’d worry a bloke like you but I’m telling you mate, we can take a joke down here. It’s a bit of fun, you know?

    Now I don’t wanna sound rude, mate, and you can think whatever you like. But maybe before you have a whinge you should think about talking to the people on whose behalf you’re doing the whinging, you know? And if you still wanna stick your nose in other people’s business, maybe you should stick to your own back yard.

    Cheers.

    • albertino says:

      Sounds pretty rude to me. This isn’t about your backyard, this is about the gaming industry as a whole, and the affect this has on its perception globally.

      It’s rare to encounter REAL sexism these days. Only real ****ing morons ‘attack’ someone on their sex. The biggest problem we have is ignorance – people being ignorantly sexist. You know, that casual throw away comment (perhaps within dialogue i.e. Batman:AC). That casual assumption made about an entire sex (as shown here by Deep Silver). THAT’s the bigger danger because it creeps and grows, and stunts the industry from evolving and growing.

      There are many comments here that espouse this kind of ignorance. If you don’t like it – go and read stuff from other sites/journalists.

      • Sheng-ji says:

        I think… I’m sure it was supposed to be a joke… no-one is that stereotypically Aussie, are they? God bless him if he is!

        • albertino says:

          Well, I did wonder but it just went on so long that any sarcasm/humour was lost on me :p

        • MarcP says:

          Everyone speaks like this in Dead Island. That’s the joke.

  3. dmoe says:

    So just don’t buy it? So where’s the line drawn now for art now? I mean maybe it’s tacky? And probably offensive to some? But is it really something to cause such angry feelings toward the gaming industry for?

    Regardless if people found this offensive you’re also given a choice here not to support it but it also has the freedom to exist under the banner of ‘art’ doesn’t it? If you like it or not there is a grey area here being left out of the conversation. You have cheesecake art and it has the freedom to exist right next to gallery art. Is it because ‘video games’ are a special case? The problem I’m seeing here more than anything is it’s starting to throw a very very large blanket over everything when it isn’t fair to one area while also creating a huge problem when there isn’t none.

    http://i.imgur.com/7pnOzXM.png

    • Niaco says:

      So now, any piece of rubbish thrown at people to make them buy stuff is art? I see the point you want to make but I think “art” and “freedom of speech” are 2 convenient keywords used to dodge real issues.

      And even if I agreed with your point (and I don’t, I think nothing in the torso itself, as well as the process through which it was made, qualifies as art), doesn’t the trope say that art should trigger debate? So in any case, we should talk about this.

      The “don’t buy it ” argument is valid, but it’s not really an argument against having a converstaion about the topic of sexism and/or shady business practices either.

      • dmoe says:

        Didn’t say it shouldn’t be talked about but I also think your take on what art is isn’t what mine is either. And that’s the problem here. I don’t see anything sexist about it but I do see it as a piece of art that’s accompanying the game title it was designed for.

        It really boils down to what people are reading into it here and I honestly don’t see it any different to what you see in any of these “Special Editions” people are willing to pay for. I mean there is dismemberment in the game isn’t there? I guess if a Halo game came with a Cortana torso SE I could see that starting a debate since she’s usually intact as one person from head to toe.

        • Canisa says:

          “I could see that starting a debate since she’s usually intact as one person from head to toe.”

          Um. So are most women.

        • albertino says:

          The difference is that for the vast majority, ‘the arts’ doesn’t encompass video games. Even the defining wiki page underlines this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_arts#Video_games.

          The problem is that when this kind of thing is seen by the public at large, it does nothing to reinforce games as an art form, a craft, and mainly solidifies the notion to non-gamers that they are toys for immature boys (it’s a dismembered torso with massive tits for god’s sake). Thus it stunts the growth of the industry as a whole.

          Maybe if games were widely considered as one of the arts and had reached the level of maturity we all want it to then this kind of thing might be seen differently, a risqué attention-grabbing move by the publisher perhaps.

          As it is it’s just damaging to the image of this industry and sexist to boot.

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          Nogo says:

          Do they really need to strap a pair of fake tits on the box under a sign that says “bet you’ll like this you teenage wanker” for you to understand how this differs a little from a plastic big daddy?

      • harbinger says:

        This is also “art”, even exhibited at various galleries around the world:
        http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lyx6qw0jSL1r7l7vto1_500.jpg (this figurine called “My Lonesome Cowboy” was sold for over $15 million btw.)
        http://arrestedmotion.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/IMG_8909_P.Nguyen-600×450.jpg

        Neither you, nor John Walker get to decide what is “art” and what isn’t or what people are supposed to like and not to like. Or I might’ve just missed the ceremony where you were declared “high emperors of planet earth”.

      • Grape Flavor says:

        I’m pretty sure whether one considers something as “true art” or not does and should not have any bearing on whether it is protected under freedom of speech.

        And I’m also pretty sure “freedom of speech” is a hell of a lot more important than some meddlesome buzzword used to blunt your indignation. The right to speech will always be more important than the fictional right to not be offended. A society that does not accept that is not one I want to live in.

        John says the statue is revolting sexist garbage that should never have been made. Good on him. Freedom of speech is great, isn’t it?

    • Grape Flavor says:

      Ha. I can’t say I really disagree with this much. Look, I’m sure John is fundamentally a nice, sensible fellow and he means well. I mean that. And some of the comments on these articles can be pretty terrible, I agree. But I can’t quite shake this feeling that part of the problem here is the inability to live and let live.

      The statue is tacky and stupid and arguably even sexist. Yeah, it is. And? Some people like tacky and stupid things. Tacky and stupid people, probably. I’m certainly not going to buy it, or the game either (though to be honest that’s more from the game being crap than from Torsogate).

      But in a free society people are free to make tacky and stupid things. That’s the price we pay. And I really do question how much harm this thing is actually doing to society beyond causing such strife on RPS. I find it hard to believe that anyone turned into a misogynist from knowing of the existence of this statue.

      I often feel like I might be the only one here that has sympathy for both sides of this debate. I understand that sexism is a problem in the game-o-sphere and there’s nothing wrong with pushing to rectify this, yet at the same time I totally get the people who would just like to read about fucking video games in peace without some guy ranting at them about how offended he is about stuff many may see as fairly trivial.

      Whatever. As long as people can keep it civil there’s nothing wrong with disagreement, really. I’ll just sit here with my policy of selective engagement to try and keep my own sanity.

  4. drastic00 says:

    I like it. I won’t buy it, but I like it.

  5. Canisa says:

    There’s no debate to be had. People who insist that there’s no such thing as misogyny or sexism in the games industry are just plain objectively *wrong*. Please try to understand this.

  6. cptgone says:

    instead of game news, another rant, another outcry for auto-censorship, accompanied by frenzied chest beating over how moral the fearless rps crusaders are. sigh.

    • albertino says:

      It’s called journalism: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Journalism

      • cptgone says:

        it’s fanatical activism. and counter productive.

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          Nogo says:

          A post on a blog is fanatical activism now? What does that make those guys who burnt down a log cabin then? Super-mega-fanatatastical activism? And counter-productive to what?

          For someone who uses so many hyperboles it’s surprising that you’re so apathetic.

          • Premium User Badge

            cpt_freakout says:

            GAME NEWS AS FANATICAL GEEKNESS

          • Lusketrollet says:

            GAME NEWS AS FANATICAL GEEKNESS

            No, fanatical geekiness as fanatical geekiness.

            Please don’t try to pretend otherwise.

          • cptgone says:

            counter-productive to the feminist cause, to which i’m sympathetic, as long as it doesn’t devolve to this caricature that denies sociobiological and psychological facts in an attempt to enforce censorship.

        • Barberetti says:

          No it isn’t, and no it isn’t.

  7. Hahaha says:

    I would love for someone to make a game based on the crossed comics, the special edition extras would be an amazing publicity boost as well.

  8. harbinger says:

    Of course, when it comes to Deep Silver RPS has never reported about the Disc-Locked-Content that was included in the Retail copy of Risen 2 and people could unlock using the in-game console, summarily changed a few days after release by blocking it with a Patch: http://www.cinemablend.com/games/Risen-2-Disc-DLC-Blocked-With-Patch-42432.html

    Or the “Ranger Mode” DLC for Metro: Last Light, which is basically akin to cutting out the highest difficulty Option and selling it afterwards.
    http://www.dsogaming.com/news/metro-last-lights-dlc-exploited-ranger-offers-a-new-hardcore-difficulty/

    Nor does RPS seem to have the integrity of not running a page-spanning Advertisement for either Dead Island: Riptide or now Metro: Last Light and denying themselves those Advertisement dollars. No, it stops at a few sharp remarks and still takes Deep Silvers, EAs or anyone elses money to pay for their salaries.

    Reporting about stuff that actually matters to consumers buying the games over a few “I’m so offended by this” news posts about physical tat best answered with “So what? Do you want a medal now? Don’t like it, don’t buy it.” in an entirely Optional version of the game that everyone with the barest form of “free will” has the decision not to buy, or standing behind what they say with anything more than their empty words is apparently taking matters too far.
    Might actually deceive people into thinking you’re doing your job and reporting about shit that directly affects gamers and they actually give a fuck about for once, instead of running your mouth off about banal shit.

    • alw says:

      Reporting about stuff that actually matters to consumers buying the games over a few “I’m so offended by this” news posts about physical tat best answered with “So what? Do you want a medal now? Don’t like it, don’t buy it.” in an entirely Optional version of the game that everyone with the barest form of “free will” has the decision not to buy, or standing behind what they say with anything more than their empty words is apparently taking matters too far.

      Isn’t it just a tad hypocritical to rant about someone else’s rant? I mean, if you don’t like it, don’t read it – free will and all that..

      • Grape Flavor says:

        Never stopped me! No, I think ranting about rants is fair game. Opinions don’t get to be held above feedback just because they’re passionate, in fact, if you can’t keep it together when you make your point I’d say that makes you more ripe for criticism, not less.

  9. Lifebleeder says:

    I’m a 28 year old male, and I have a problem. Don’t tell my fiancee this, but I like boobs. I know this is unacceptable, and I’m reprehensible for it. I just can’t help myself.

    Man I’m glad I got that off shoulders.

    With that out of the way, truth be told. I found that steak far more sexually arousing then a dismembered torso. I think Mr. Walker found the perfect pre-order ploy.

  10. PatrickR says:

    Again, thank you for continuing to run these kinds of stories. Keep up the good work John!

  11. junsumoney says:

    While I think the statue is disgusting and in bad taste and perpetuates the idea that video games aren’t for girls, who cares if someone does buy the special edition of the game? I don’t care if someone will masturbate to this gore-ridden statue of lady tits, it’s their right to do so.

  12. Stuka_JU87 says:

    I am offended by Johns comments more so than plastic figure. I can vote with my wallet as most of the commenters here suggest .I will now be blocking ads on RPS.

  13. 9squirrels says:

    See the simple way to make these people pay is to treat them the way I would treat my children in this case. Let them think they’ve gotten away with it. Then when they come back to you when they want something (ie when they release their next game and want to promote it) respond that you are unable to deal with their promotion material/interview request/etc as you are currently still waiting for an answer to your earlier question. Attach your earlier question concerning torsogate and tell them that once this item has been dealt with you will attend to their more recent communications. It has the bonus of bringing up the stink at a time when they are wanting to move on and promote something new.
    Of course, this relies on everyone getting behind this and behaving in the same way (as with parenting, if one side caves, then it’s a waste of time).

  14. Strange Brew says:

    I think more focus needs to be placed on the fact that the follow-up article by the same author featured a statement that it wasn’t clear whether they would be withdrawing said item and the outrage in this one (and previous) is based on the suddenly inarguable implication that they would (in addition to ‘the silence’).

    I don’t oppose your opinion, I find a bloodied torso of any gender somewhat tasteless, a sexualised one moreso.

    However, if it hasn’t already been made abundantly clear, one of the main reasons why people take such issue with your articles of this nature is not because they disagree with your opinion, but because you’re bad at expressing it. You’re emotional and sensationalistic, glib and hyperbolic. You make it hard for people who actually agree with you to give you their support, because your methods are disagreeable. This is why, despite my being a stalwart atheist, Richard Dawkins irritates me to no end.

    If you’re aware of this and doing it intentionally to generate discussion and bring more attention to the issues at hand, I suggest you take some time to really think this strategy over, as you’re not only radicalising fence-sitters and those who disagree with you, but you’re alienating those who might otherwise give you their support.

    Fundamentalism and sensationalism are immoral, regardless of which end of a spectrum they happen to fall on.

    • Cruzer says:

      I genuinely could not agree more. Your post expresses my feelings about this blogger far more eloquently than I ever could with my own words.

    • Grape Flavor says:

      Harsh, but there’s room for tough love here, I think. There is definitely the contingent on RPS that feels that the sentiment of these advocacy pieces is well placed but the execution is lacking and probably these people should be listened to more.

      I mean, I’m not saying I personally could do it better but I agree that it could be done better, if that makes sense.

    • Ginhyun says:

      Well said.

  15. SpectralThundr says:

    All I can do at this whole post is facepalm. It’s a video game, how beta do you have to be to get upset at a promotional item of a cut up torso for a collector’s edition of a fricken ZOMBIE game where you..wait for it. CUT UP ZOMBIES!

    Liberalism: Never once which I guess would be the Labour party in Brittan.

  16. frightlever says:

    These days I just skip or ignore the RPS articles that are clearly crusading link bait. Well, I try to. It doesn’t always work. I mean, this.

    While privileged white guys are entitled to an opinion, I’d rather read what the likes of Cara or Porpentine think about sexism because it’s coming from a personal perspective. I doubt I’m going to agree with them but I’ll be able to empathise with their position. When men talk about the evils of sexism it’s just patronising masturbation for the soul. The irony is profound. Oh, men should this because women are that and if you didn’t have that then all our daughters can be astronauts. Which assumes all women are some homogeneous mass that must adhere to some ideal anti-Stepford life-plan. We don’t even need THAT many astronauts.

    FWIW I feel the same when people who don’t understand numbers talk about statistics, or deliberately cherry-pick a sub-set of the data to suit their evil Daily Mail-aping schemes. Or when they comment on business decisions absent a basic understanding of what a corporation is and the legal obligations they are under which often preclude any kind of “morality” in their decisions.

    But by all means continue shouting down the well.

  17. Homercleese says:

    Just felt the need to chime in and say thanks John for reporting on this and continuing to report on the questionable actions of the industry as a whole. You’ll probably not see this but I can only imagine that the torrent of fairly unbelievable objections to this post must be depressing as hell so here’s one more voice of support. Maybe intelligent, logical discussion will cut through the guff eventually.

    And Jebus, to the people making the unmatched pedantic argument of whether Deep Silver’s statement implied they would withdraw the torso consider this. If you apologise for something while intending to continue doing it and then indeed go on to carry out the action then your apology was a lie. The apology does in fact imply that you would correct your apparently self admitted misdeed. So they did lie.

    Frankly I don’t care if you find it offensive or not and of course share the view, linked to earlier, from Fry and Hitchens and any free speech advocate worth his salt, that offense is not a viable reason for censorship. However, being evolved animals there are I think natural unarguable images that offend us almost as a rule and I’m fairly certain that imitation butchered torsos count as such.

    Not to mention that seeing this on someones mantelpiece as the original press release suggested would make me considered the owner to be a crass imbecile. But each to his own. Some people enjoy torturing small animals.

    • vagabond says:

      No, they said they were sorry that people took offense and that it wouldn’t happen again. As pointed out elsewhere in this thread when they first made this statement John wrote he wasn’t sure if that meant they were stopping the sale of this item or not.

      From the point of view of Deep Silver, some people who were probably never going to buy their game in the first place are upset at their marketing, and some other people, who like their game enough to pay extra for the collectors version have pre-ordered this. They have to piss off someone, should it be people that are already pissed off at them, or their fans who have already paid money for this?

      Serious follow up question, Should anyone ever be allowed to own an item like this?

      As for their current silence, I wouldn’t talk to Rock Paper Shotgun if I were them. John has a recent history of distorting data to make his case, anything they say will be twisted, no sorry, “exaggerated” to fit the point he wants to make.

      As for your “natural unarguable images that offend us”, I am not in the slightest offended by this, and this thread is full of people who aren’t offended, so it seems pretty arguable.

      • Homercleese says:

        Sorry it’s taken so long to reply, is there a way to set up alerts to prevent this kind of delay? Well, unless there is, this is probably a pointless reply to no one but for courtesy’s sake.

        It’s pretty clear in the statement, they apologise for offense caused and then close with another general apology. They expressed great regret. You can call this a matter for interpretation but as I understand the concept you don’t apologise for and regret something that you continue to carry out and always intended to. That’s repeating myself but I would have considered the concept to be a pretty basic understanding of social conventions. Crocodile tears and all that.

        Your statement that they acknowledged the reality of ‘having to piss off someone’ and that they were aware of the reaction just further highlight’s the cynical and exploitative nature of this entire enterprise and so can only further damage Deep Silver’s reputation.

        All that said, I’m in no way advocating any kind of ban. I’d like to think that the last 100 years of the female equality movement (which I’m often not a fan of, quotas for instance, but support in principle) can survive this and free speech demands it be unobstructed. Again, it’s just a matter of taste, the buying of this would simply prove that you have none.

        Ok, now by saying ‘distort’ you’re calling John’s credibility and integrity as a journalist into account so here you really need to provide so proof of that. It’s no small claim to make. If you want to retract that and just leave it at ‘exaggerate’ then that can simply be left as a difference of opinion. John’s clearly very passionate about this topic and sees it as an example of a greater trend that needs to be combated. On this interpretation I agree with him. It’s pretty oblivious to think that there aren’t powerful interests which have a significant amount of money resting on the objectification of women if nothing other than for the fact the sex sells. And breasts and bums are by far the most attractive and easily marketed manifestations of this. A partially clothed cock just doesn’t have the same appeal even for those of that persuasion.

        I’ll back down on the instinctive offense angle because, yeah, each to his own, there’s a whole lot of variation out there. The phenomenon itself though is unarguable. In this case I think probably it’s not an issue precisely because the statue has already been so objectified. Were there a lifelike head on it with a recognisable human face expressing the appropriate level of suffering for those wounds then I think most of us would feel different.

  18. Jaks says:

    The lady torso thing was crass, but it wasn’t that bad. You guys are acting like you’ve never seen boobs before in a marketing gimmick.

  19. Tagiri says:

    No single one of these incidents is ever “that bad” on its own. But each one adds up and it’s tiring and infuriating to see this industry constantly telling a huge portion of the gaming population that this hobby is not ‘for’ them. It’s also just counter-intuitive to do exclusionary things in a market where selling every unit possible is important.

    ETA: Reply fail, this was a response to Jaks.

  20. whoCares says:

    I never thought this was a real problem, because I did never have a problem with this issue, but from the comments I can see that there are a lot of idiots running around(“I’m a white man and thats why this article is wrong”…blabla). I mean it seems like any article that has anything to do with women or does only use any female related “thing” is immiediately shitstormed with retarded arguments about nothing. Which means that there are a lot of idiots that are basically ranting about women.
    So I came to the thought, that it’s not gaming industry in general that needs to be fixed but just some idiots that need to be educated or shipped away. It is not my hobby that is the problem but some poor fuckers with forum-boners.
    This makes me feel good and I want to thank RPS for broadening my horizon a little bit. I can now see that there is in fact a problem because I can see the symptoms but I myself am just to healthy to see it.

  21. Audiocide says:

    While I’d agree that the torso thing was in poor taste, and that an insincere apology is a glaring sign of a profound character flaw, bashing the game itself because of the publisher’s actions is just as insincere.

    People attacking random things – that may or may not be related to the root of the problem – because of political or personal rivalries is pretty cliché at this point.

    I haven’t played the game yet, so disregard this if it truly sucks.

  22. Inzimus says:

    hey… nice piece of meat… can I pound it? (I’m an omnivore, does that make me a bad Human?)

    • Don Reba says:

      Um, yes, wanting to have sex with a dismembered torso makes you a bad Human. No doubt about it.

  23. TinSoldier says:

    Boo bloody hoo, a publisher wasn’t quite clear enough for you, John; a little known fact about the world, most marketing practises are shady. As a website with a wide readership, perhaps you should cover the much bigger things going on in the gaming world i.e. over worked employees, poor salaries (for both sexes!) etc.

    As an aside, this limited edition bust is art (to say it’s not is akin to saying games aren’t art, and nobody here would do that right!…) – anyway, the beauty of art is inherently subjective – who are you to say that a limbless bust is vulgar – how to you think that makes the sculptor feel!

    You’re entitled to your opinion but stop dragging Deep Silver through the mud over one (in your opinion) faux pas.

    • Coops07 says:

      “Boo bloody hoo”? Anyone who thinks this is an article about John ‘getting back’ at the ‘evil lying publishers’, please; just stop. Take a deep breath and realize that RPS did not put up this article for that reason, and whether you want to believe ‘that’ lie or the lie about equality between the sexes (like some of these people are preaching), that is YOUR prerogative, however, do not sit there and try to justify something you know shit all about. The world is the way it is because it developed that way over decades, societal prejudices do not dissapear in a day, or a year, or a single decade, and some human beings hold onto their beliefs until the day they die; so ‘believing’ that things are equal in all regards does not make it true, and all it takes is ONE real world occurrence to disprove this.

      All YOU need to decide is, a) Is this person crazy? b) If no to ‘a’, what are they really trying to say to me? You know what? I’ll do the work for you, he’s not crazy and clearly he’s pointing out an injustice, not a bald faced lie.

      Oh, and you sir TinSoldier, are an idiot.

      Ignorance is not an excuse.

      • Darzu says:

        TinSoldier made a perfectly valid point. You sir, are acting like a babyish idiot.

        • Coops07 says:

          Babyish….really?
          TinSoldier is trying to debunk an article about pointing out the actions of a company; I for one (along with many others) appreciate this kind of article to bring light to situations we would otherwise know little to nothing about. I guess you didn’t read the article, or just ignored the point of it. Just like you’ll ignore the point of a comment .

          • Darzu says:

            This article appears to be based on the misinterpretation of the publisher’s statement and, as ambigious as it may be, I see nothing wrong with it. I much prefered the article on Simcity as John’s charge against EA was much more valid.

  24. jmtd says:

    Thanks for reporting on this, I hope you continue to do so.

    • Sparkasaurusmex says:

      Likewise.
      I must say I’m kind of surprised by this, but I have a glib feeling of satisfaction that these articles raise the blood pressure of assholes.
      Fuck you assholes! That’s right! Ah, feels good….

  25. Scabmastah says:

    Oh so all the in-game gore is alright but when someone makes a physical representation of it it’s suddenly disgusting and wrong? Anybody who enjoys Dead Island (or any other gorey game) and then complains about the rawness of this statuette is a fucking hypocrite.

    • albertino says:

      I agree but you’re missing the point there dude

      • Darzu says:

        If the world ends up offended by this piece of tat then the collector’s edition will sell rather poorly and Deep Silver will, in future, think twice about being controvertial. I believe we should let the market decide.

        • albertino says:

          Even if this does sell well it doesn’t address the issues of it alienating some people completely (not just from this game), and giving the nay-sayers of video games some added fuel. Additionally the fact that Deep Silver seem to have acted in a very underhand way.

          I agree with voting with your wallet though, hence avoiding this buggy mess of a game and its tacky special edition.

          Edge gave it a 3…need I say more? http://www.edge-online.com/review/dead-island-riptide-review/

    • Sparkasaurusmex says:

      Quit with the “fucking hypocrite” nonsense.
      It’s ad hominem and a pointless debate.
      I’m a fucking hypocrite and I don’t care…it doesn’t change the message. Guess what, this isn’t about sexism, it’s about a publisher implying sincerity and then showing they meant none of it.

      I suppose it’s also an opportunity for you people to vent about how everyone should just shut up if they aren’t perfect angels.

    • SpectralThundr says:

      Liberal democrats tend to have a habit of being hypocritical douchebags to begin with. This isn’t any different in this case.

  26. max pain says:

    I don’t see anything wrong with this. It fits the theme of the game. Have a problem with that? Complain about the theme not about one article just because it’s physical.

    The thing is, we as consumers come into contact with this kind entertaining gore and sexuality (and i think this whole buzz is about the latter) a lot. I mean, have a quick look outside of gaming industry. You won’t have to look long to find content like this. Movies. Music videos. It’s fun, it’s entertainment.

    If you’re offended by this kind of content, there’s a lot of content aimed at younger audiences without gore and sexual references. There’s even a system in place for you. It’s called ESBR.

    If you wish for a world where all games would be made to suit you, I must disagree with you. I rather have a wide range of content to choose from on my own.

    • SpectralThundr says:

      @max but but but MUH feminism! It’s pretty pathetic how easily offended people are these days. Orwell was off by a few years. The totalitarian thought police aka liberal socialist will soon make any white male make sure to check their privilege daily.

  27. Don Reba says:

    Maybe they were simply sarcastic about it. It’s like:
    — Deep Silver, the kerning on your game title is beyond reprehensible! How can you live with your lack of typographic taste?!
    — We are truly sorry. We deeply apologize to have put our fans though this trying ordeal and promise to never do this again.
    — What the fuck, Deep Silver, you are still using that title! Recall all copies of your game immediately!
    — …crickets…

  28. zin33 says:

    36 thousand kids die every day due to lack of food / clean water
    some guys sell an immature product that causes harm to no one

    i guess the second option was more worthy of articles because it somehow has something to do with gaming right? right??