Bethesda has opened up about its recent marketing campaign for its upcoming shooter Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus. Launched on Twitter over the weekend, the short video showed an in-game Nazi being punched in the face with the slogan, 'If you are a Nazi, GTFO' in huge letters either side of the clip.
Previously, developer MachineGames said it wanted the game to be "timeless" and completely divorced from current events, but it would appear Bethesda has other ideas, as it explained in a recent interview with Glixel.
"The release date for the game was set in stone months prior to its E3 unveiling, and even further removed from the events of Charlottesville," vice president of marketing Pete Hines said.
"The game and its content were well along the path to completion, and no one from MachineGames or Bethesda could have predicted Nazis marching down American streets in 2017. Even talking about it now seems ludicrous. From a marketing standpoint, we certainly saw an opportunity to take a stand against these events while also talking about the game we’re making, which is about killing Nazis and overthrowing their rule in the US."
He continued: "We have an open dialogue with the team at MachineGames. The fact that there is now a political and social climate, particularly here in the US, is something we’ve talked about. We weren’t going to hide from the fact our game is about killing Nazis and freeing the US from their rule, and if we can reference current events as part of talking about the game, so be it. Nazis are evil. We aren’t afraid to remind people of that."
However, Hines reiterated that The New Colossus "was not written to be a commentary on current events" and that he's been pleased with the response to both the game and its marketing.
"With things being the way they are, having a healthy (and safe) avenue to vent some frustrations is a good thing, and we hope Wolfenstein II can be a way to do that for folks."