I’ve been playing the PC version of Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter 2 (a game nowhere near as fun as one with an ancroynm that sounds like a cartoon monster should be. The campaign for the word ‘graw’ to be re-adopted by something sillier starts here). In one of the mid-game missions, a Mexican chap who’s helping my US commando squad rid his country of thinly-sketched renengades laments the horrific damage done to his hometown, at least some of which was the airstrike and mortar bombings I called in on the last level. “Theeeeeees ceeeeety, what have we done to her?” he cries, in textbook comedy Mexicanspeak.
There’s a pause. Then Scott Mitchell, the lead Ghost – and the player character – smarmily replies, “It’s called the price of peace.” This was delivered in exactly the same tone as, say, “shut up and be thankful, you dumb gringo” would have been.
I snarled at the screen in disgust, manouvered Mitchell into the nearest firefight I could find and left him to die. Then I played Peggle instead. Hint to games designers: make your heroes also likeable by people who aren’t raging patriot gun-nuts.