Shortly after the Internet exploded with fiery passion (and cool apathy) over Ubisoft's reveal trailer of Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) responded with outrage:
"Whaling—that is, shooting whales with harpoons and leaving them to struggle for an hour or more before they die or are hacked apart while they are still alive—may seem like something out of the history books, but this bloody industry still goes on today in the face of international condemnation, and it’s disgraceful for any game to glorify it."
In a bout of good-meaning sarcasm, Ubisoft has defended the depiction of whaling in its upcoming pirate-themed blockbuster, saying, "Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag is a work of fiction that depicts the real events during the golden era of pirates. We do not condone illegal whaling, just as we don't condone a pirate lifestyle of poor hygiene, plundering, hijacking ships, and over-the legal-limit drunken debauchery."
Never one to back down from ethical argumentation, Matt Bruce of PETA responded to Polygon in kind, stating, "It doesn't take anything away from having [whaling] not be a part of the game, but they insisted on putting it in . . . Unfortunately, it's glorifying something that's still happening today and is as cruel and bloody as it was 300 years ago."
It delights me to see Ubisoft taking a firm stance in defending its artistic liberty to depict... well, whatever the hell they want--especially when the matter at hand is of historical significance. But what do you think? Drop a comment below, and keep it locked to PSU.com for more on Assassin's Creed IV in the coming weeks and months.