Medal of Honor features playable Taliban characters
EA could find themselves courting controversy with the upcoming Medal of Honor: the FPS, set in the modern day Afghanistan, will feature content that sees you play as Taliban characters. The game’s producer, Patrick Liu, has responded by saying that the content will not “provoke too hard.”
When asked by PSM3 if he thought the public would feel uncomfortable playing as Taliban soldiers, Liu replied:
“I think it is a fair point. We do stir up some feelings, although it’s not about the war, it’s about the soldiers.”
Medal of Honor tries not to glamorise war, but to instead show the exceptional circumstances which soldiers under Special Operations Command live their lives. EA have brought real-life Tier 1 operatives on board to advise the development team, to ensure the experience is as authentic as possible.
This authenticity can lead to some awkward moments, especially as the game is based on an ongoing conflict that has seen millions of lives devastated. The setting is already controversial, but having playable Taliban characters is certainly distasteful for the many people who have suffered at the hands of the Taliban.
Lui is keen to play down the issue:
“We can’t get away from what the setting is and who the factions are but, in the end, it’s a game, so we’re not pushing or provoking too hard.”
Lui is correct to say that it’s only a game, and it’s probably fair to say we’ve had more distasteful stuff played on our consoles. However, EA’s team take great pride in the level of authenticity in Medal of Honor and once you start creating content that resonates with people you have to accept that some people may find it offensive.
We’ll reserve judgement until we’ve seen it, but at least it doesn’t sound as though it will be as crude as the airport shooting in Modern Warfare 2.