Recent photos and videos from the Beyond: Two Souls remaster have had some on the Internet in a rampage. Recent images suggest that some characters in the game have been white-washed, specifically some Middle Eastern characters. Developer Quantic Dream has described the accusations as “upsetting” and respond to the accusations.
David Cage talked to Eurogamer about the issue of characters having a lighter skin tone after Digital Foundry posted screenshots of the game on Twitter. His response is below:
“What was reported is that a couple of guards and passers-by in the Embassy appear to have a lighter skin compared to the original game, this is due to two reasons: 1. the lighting has changed, as well as the skin shader we use, leading to slightly lighter skins in general (which can also be seen on Jodie’s white skin), [and] some black skins are a little bit darker (which has not been reported…).
He then continued: “2. All characters have been upgraded on the PS4 version compared to the PS3, which sometimes led to creating a new face that can be different from the previous one (as well as different clothes or accessories). The skin tone or type of few characters may have changed in the process, although only a couple of characters out of 300 have seen their skin getting slightly lighter (without changing their racial type to keep the consistency of the characterization).”
He later on expressed his concern for those accusing Quantic Dream of white-washing certain characters.
“Talking about the skin colour of two guards in the context of a game like Beyond is absurd, and for me personally, upsetting. Quantic Dream has been actively promoting cultural, gender and racial diversity in all of its past and present games, as well as in our own company. Quantic Dream is a studio in which people from around the globe, of all races and religions work together and share the same passion for crafting meaningful emotional experiences.”
He also displays regret for having to live in a world where he has to both justify why they look lighter and where he has to do this publicly.
“We sadly regret that we have to justify ourselves when the skin color of a passer-by has slightly changed for technical reasons, but we would like to reassure our fans and tell them that Quantic Dream will continue to promote racial and gender diversity in games, as well as positive human emotions and values.”
If you’re curious about how the game’s changed between the PS3 and PS4 version, check out the video here. Do you think David Cage and Quantic Dream did this purposely? Or is it as he stated, a change in lighting and redoing the character facial models? Sound off in the comments!