EA Cuts Taliban From Medal of Honor

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EA Cuts Taliban From Medal of Honor

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With just a few days to go before the multiplayer open beta begins, Electronic Arts has decided to remove the Taliban from Medal of Honor.

The decision to include the Taliban as a playable faction in the upcoming Medal of Honor was a ballsy one, and one that EA appeared committed to despite the predictable uproar. But with the multiplayer beta client available for download beginning today, the publisher has announced a last-second change of heart: The Taliban is out.

"In the past few months, we have received feedback from all over the world regarding the multiplayer portion of Medal of Honor. We've received notes from gamers, active military, and friends and family of servicemen and women currently deployed overseas. The majority of this feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. For this, the Medal of Honor team is deeply appreciative," Executive Producer Greg Goodrich wrote in a message on the Medal of Honor blog.

"However, we have also received feedback from friends and families of fallen soldiers who have expressed concern over the inclusion of the Taliban in the multiplayer portion of our game. This is a very important voice to the Medal of Honor team. This is a voice that has earned the right to be listened to. It is a voice that we care deeply about," he continued. "Because of this, and because the heartbeat of Medal of Honor has always resided in the reverence for American and Allied soldiers, we have decided to rename the opposing team in Medal of Honor multiplayer from Taliban to Opposing Force."

Goodrich said the change was being made "for the men and women serving in the military and for the families of those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice - this franchise will never willfully disrespect, intentionally or otherwise, your memory and service."

Whether this will mollify the hurt feelings of those who were upset by the presence of the Taliban is tough to say. It's way too late to make any meaningful changes to the game, after all, and Goodrich stated outright that the gameplay will remain the same. In other words, you can still play as an AK-47-toting, suicide-bombing extremist trying to kill American forces in an ongoing, real-world conflict, you just can't have the T-word at the top of your scoreboard.

I don't mind admitting that I'm disappointed by the change. It may not have an impact on the gameplay, but it does once again prove that when push comes to shove, game publishers will ultimately break down like an ashamed child withering under the scowl of disapproving adults. If it wasn't for the fact that the replacement name is so generically awful, I'd wonder if maybe this wasn't EA's plan from the start: Get some attention by stirring up an easy controversy and then turn it into last-minute kudos by doing the right thing. After all, it wouldn't be the worst marketing plan the videogame industry has ever come up with.

Medal of Honor comes out on October 12 for the PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

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What a load of bollocks...

To para-phrase Ice T...

That's janky.

Edit:

They need to grow some fucking balls. Might as well include it, the damage is done. The mainstream media isn't going to tell the public it was removed, because all it cared about was the controversy and ratings that comes from villainizing gaming..

Hmmm, I guess the phrase "power to the people" comes into mind here.

Ah well, back to the standard formula of just shooting random, faceless, nameless, godless, evil ragheads then.

I'm disappointed in you, EA.

Like it makes any difference. We were nazis in TDM for years and no one complained. The models, gameplay etc have not changed, just the text between rounds.

No marketing could blow up like the MW2 FAGS video.

Way to stick to your guns guys...

This just shows how stupid people are.

"They're called 'Talibans', that horribly wrong, you hate America, you fucker!"
"What if we don't change anything, except that we rename them to 'Opposing Force'?"
"Well then, that's alright."

They just changed the name?
Pathetic

Arachon:
What a load of bollocks...

My sentiments exactly.

I don't think they changed anything other than the name, Generic Terrorist Organization, GTO.

And thus another video game publisher bows to moral panic weakening our case for games as a legitimate art form and making gamers seem weak and easily compromised.

ignore this post

wow. didnt see this coming. unless it is and this is a publicity stunt

Onyx Oblivion:
To para-phrase Ice T...

That's janky.

You just won the internet, you really did.

OT: This sucks, it's a shame they had to bow in to the peer pressure.

What a bunch of weak willed, politically correct horse manure. Yes, I can see how someone might consider calling the other side the Taliban to be a somewhat sensitive matter to some, but we've been using Nazis in games for years. Please don't try to tell me that the Nazis are any less offensive a group than the Taliban.

Wow. Way to stick to your guns, EA. I guess just changing the name makes everything better?

Is this surprising? They got the free publicity out of this whole ordeal, and now that everybody knows about the game, they're cutting something that nobody wants.

In related news, all mentions or images of the Taliban have also been removed from Silvester Stallone's third Rambo film. While this creates a great many instances where the series' main character, "John Rambo" is talking to empty spaces or himself, we feel this is a more positive movie overall. As now Rambo defeats the USSR single handedly for no one's benefit but his own.

Javex:
I'm disappointed in you, EA.

Ditto. So now who are we fighting in multiplayer? Modern day nazis? Or maybe we'll just fight other americans, you know, really get that political 'hate-america' crowd as part of your consumer base.

So in all the previous games... when my "opponents" are screaming German and trying to kill me...

They weren't REALLY Nazis.

Or Japanese when they carried arisakas, and were located in the Pacific Isles.

Or Russian in any of the more recent games where Russia was the favored flavor of baddie.

I feel better knowing I was JUST playing an opposing force in all of those multiplayer matches. I might have accidentally begun sympathizing with genocidal dogmas if I had ACTUALLY been a German.

They should have watched the episode of EXTRA CREDIT and learn one important lesson - DO NOT CAVE IN! DONT LET THEM CENSOR AND CONTROL YOU!

Oh EA, you dissapoint me greatly.

*Shakes head in a dissaproving manner*

This kind of cowardice is exactly the reason why we can't get our medium to be taken seriously. Those who are meant to be the artists can't defend their craft from a little piss on their parade. Fuck them.

This lot have a bunch of weak stomachs, and to add idiocy to cowardice, they claimed it was because of respect and honour for the friends and family of soldiers who fought and died there. Instead, they've become politically correct, and bunch of wusses who can't defend the content they put into the game.

They can go to hell for all I care. We need devs and publishers with strong stomachs.

That has lost the game for me on a principal level. I was willing to shell out for this as it demonstrated how far gaming is coming along. This cop out has cost EA at least one sale.

They shall no longer be called Taliban. The faction's name will now simply be "Brown people"

Doctor What:
Is this surprising? They got the free publicity out of this whole ordeal, and now that everybody knows about the game, they're cutting something that nobody wants.

Not that 'nobody wants', but a bunch of people who wouldn't have played the game anyways don't want. It's like people who all drive Fords (OR don't drive at all) demanding that Toyota changes something on their cars.

They don't understand it, they don't really know anything about it, and they are up in arms over it.
People who would have never otherwise looked twice at the game are getting a cosmetic change for what? My grandfather fought in WW2, and had his brother shot in the head in front of his house by Nazis (He was from Holland). Am I up in arms about WW2 games? About playing as the Germans in Call of Duty or Medal of Honor?

This isn't a debate about taste, it's about 'how long until it's OK', and it's just ridiculous.
Movies can be culturally relevant, talking about recent events, but games can't?

I'm very very annoyed by this, but not at EA.
I'm annoyed by those who opposed this in the first place.

opposing force....

that could easily apply to anyone or anything.
Lame.

*shakes fist at EA* Cowards!

IamQ:
This just shows how stupid people are.

"They're called 'Talibans', that horribly wrong, you hate America, you fucker!"
"What if we don't change anything, except that we rename them to 'Opposing Force'?"
"Well then, that's alright."

That. So, I'm guessing the models and skins are exactly the same, but now they are just renamed [Generic Terrorist Group] from Middle-Eastern-stan.

Quick, could someone with a more prominent status as myself write an open letter to EA so that the US forces are renamed as well out of respect for all the casualties in all of the other wars that happened, too?

It's nice to see them with so much respect and understanding that I think it is fair to ask for removing all references that might upset people.

As a German, I am very happy with the successful removal to any Nazi relation in video games, but was shocked to hear about so-called "uncut" versions existing in other countries. This is clearly deeply hurting for any German that ever lost a relative during the World Wars.
Therefore I applaud EA for their move and will be happy to see them pursue their path of removing offending references from all videogames.

I can't wait to see "Them vs. the Opposing Force: Random World at War" coming out during the holiday season or even better the modernized remake "Them vs. the Opposing Force: Modern Armed Conflict (dramatized)".

Man, I better secure rights to any trademarks that use "we, us, them, ..."

wow now whatch as govenments across the world use this as a scapegoat to go against games WAY TO LET THE SIDE DOWN EA

Royas:
What a bunch of weak willed, politically correct horse manure. Yes, I can see how someone might consider calling the other side the Taliban to be a somewhat sensitive matter to some, but we've been using Nazis in games for years. Please don't try to tell me that the Nazis are any less offensive a group than the Taliban.

My thoughts exactly. I can think of at least 10 WW2 games that let you play as the Axis forces in multiplayer.

well im not buying this game any more

Javex:
I'm disappointed in you, EA.

You are disappointed that they listened to soldiers and families of soldiers and used better judgment in making a decision? It's not like they were being forced to do anything. They chose to heed the wishes of many people who's lives have been changed by their interaction with the Taliban?

I wouldn't have minded either way really, but it sounds like they at least used good reasoning and judgment in this call.

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