Bravely Second's Tomahawk Class Controversy
There are some issues in the gaming community that we all should talk about more and that deals largely with the representation and or lack there of when it comes to minorities.
What is offensive and what is acceptable needs to be more clearly defined as simply white-washing history and videos is not the best solution. Nor does it help to improve our gaming community.
Then the issues of dark skinned characters wearing the most revealing outfits as well needs to be taken into consideration. There is a great need for more representation of minorities overall in games, but it must be done in a way that is not stereotypical or offensive while still being creative. There's balance to it that game developers can work towards.
It seems enviable that some of Yoshida's lovely designs might face censorship problems in the US market like it did in Europe, never the less his artistic ideas really made a huge difference in Bravely Default and he has a lot of support from fans.
Fans don't seam to be taking to this very well while there are valid historical reasons as to why some people would be offended by this character's attire. I was happy to see a Native American character even though her outfit is on the skimpy side. They could easily covered her up more and make a few other changes in order to keep the Native American inspired class. Although her outfit looks very close to Zhu Rong from Dynasty Warriors 7. However it is highly likely that this class will be removed from the game.
Both of these characters while lovely and loved by many fans do also represent problems with the pro trails of native people, women in general and women of darker completions. Yet when I first saw both characters I was happy because there are so few that it makes a big difference even to see one every blue moon. In fact I tend to dismiss or pardon the skimpy outfit because it is typical for most female video game characters, which doesn't make it right either.
It’s a fine line between paying homage and being offensive, one which is never set in stone and is different from person to person. I liked the idea of a Native American character in a Final Fantasy-esque game, and I don’t think that traditional Native American garb is offensive by use alone. I also don’t think completely erasing a minority’s presence from a game is the best way to avoid criticism. Microsoft and Killer Instinct certainly had no problem doing it.
Should Square Enix really change the Tomahawk Class to Cowboy?
If the character was used improperly in the game, that would be an issue. Others might not appreciate the sight of Native American clothing and want to move beyond historical stereotypes, which is also a legitimate complaint. Either way, Nintendo and Square Enix maybe just decided to scrap the whole issue and go with the Cowboy job class, which still makes sense in the context of the game’s mechanics. In the Japanese version, Tomahawks specialize in rifles and guns, and they provide buffs for allies. Sounds like something a Cowboy could do just as easily.
There is a lot that goes into character deign and creating characters that gamers will love and cosplayer will dress up as. At the same time it's nice to see more diversity in games and would be nice to see women covered up a little more as well.
Bravely Second has some very talented artists behind it and we have a lot of positive things to look forward to from this game. If they scrap or alter a few designs or not like they did in the European version, I'm sure this will still be an amazing game. So stay on the look for it as its set to hit the US market on April 15, 2016, be sure to mark your calendars.