Assassin’s Creed: Origins’ Tour Mode Censors Naked Statues

Illustration for article titled Assassin’s Creed: Origins’ Tour Mode Censors Naked Statues

In a striking departure from history, Assassin’s Creed: OriginsDiscovery Tour mode replaces any nipples or genitalia with sea shells. There was no nudity in Ancient Egypt, it appears.

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Take the Serapeum of Alexandria, a Greek temple which once stood in tribute to Serapis, the Greco-Egyptian deity of the Sun. In tour mode, you can visit this historic site and see it recreated as it might have looked during the first century B.C.E. Its perimeter is adorned with several statues of bare-chested women, as it [was/is?] in real life. But in Ubisoft’s recreation the nipples on the statues are covered with sea shells. It looks a bit like Little Mermaid cosplay.

Illustration for article titled Assassin’s Creed: Origins’ Tour Mode Censors Naked Statues

Rock, Paper, Shotgun pointed out the bizarre bit of censorship earlier today. Tour mode also censors statues’ genitals, covering penises with seashells as well. But as USgamer reported, the censorship does not extend to paintings and photographs with nudes included in the tour. So while the statues lining the front of the Library of Alexandria have been covered up, the less scintillating renderings of mummified bodies are left in their natural state.

“Discovery Tour was created to offer the maximum amount of people from various ages and cultural backgrounds the ability to visit the long lost world of Ancient Egypt and learn about its history,” Ubisoft told Kotaku in a statement. “We worked hand in hand with educators and academic institutions to tailor the content to be suited for every audience, including younger students, taking into account cultural sensitivities that can be different from one country to another.”

Illustration for article titled Assassin’s Creed: Origins’ Tour Mode Censors Naked Statues

This reasoning also makes sense given that nudity is treated differently throughout the world, including modern Egypt, where the game takes place. Last fall, Belgian model Marisa Papen was temporarily arrested after doing a nude photo shoot using the Pyramids as a backdrop.

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It’s unclear whether Ubisoft could have released different versions of the mode depending on which region players lived in.

As RPS noted, the entire thing’s not so different from when U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft spent thousands of dollars to have a statue in the Department of Justice Building covered because he was tired of being interviewed on camera in front of its nipples. Or better yet, when in an episode of Spongebob Squidward accidently made an exact replica of Michelangelo’s David but with a sea shell over its dick.

Kotaku staff writer. You can reach him at ethan.gach@kotaku.com

DISCUSSION

Arnheim
Arnheim

This seems odd, given the content of the rest of the game (and indeed, the series).

Rather, it seems odd from the perspective of wondering why deadly violence is acceptable, but the (adult) human form is not.

I don’t want to get too far into politics, but this very thing is playing out right now; the Florida legislature refused to take up a discussion on guns, but voted to label pornography a public health hazard.

https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/21/health/florida-legislature-porn-dangerous-but-not-weapons/index.html



Seriously, America is the only country I know (and I’ve lived in three) that routinely says “violence is totally cool as a form of entertainment—whether it be 300 lb. men trying to break each other in half over an (American) football, grown adults beating each other into unconsciousness in an MMA bout, or what have you—but god help us all if someone sees a nipple or a penis!”

I understand the need to keep prurient material out of the hands of minors—totally on board with that. But for fuck’s sake, covering up statues—historically accurate works of art—in a game that holds the equivalent rating of an R-rated film seems absolutely asinine.