Matthew Patrick always does a top notch job investigating the hot button and weird issues that linger in the mind of gamers via his YouTube series Game Theory. What the show lacks in flash, it makes up for with a wealth of information, a welcome and refreshing thing for some folks.
Take his newest video on the racist tendencies of the cops from Grand Theft Auto 5. There are countless videos plastered across the web that show the little details thrown into the game, be it allegedly racist cops, stubble on your character’s face, cops using flashlights when their headlights are gone, and the GPS cutting out when you drive through a tunnel. It’s all pretty amazing, but MatPat wanted to dive into the reality of that first example in this clip.
To do so, he devised an experiment utilizing the three playable characters and the police in three very different areas of the game. Using similar clothing and repeated acts, Patrick ran a tally on how the cops reacted to different actions across each character. His results show that while there isn’t anything that blatantly cries “racism” within the interactions, there is a clear correlation to the social status of the character you’re playing (namely Franklin and Trevor).
As with most of his videos, Patrick brings it all back around to make a point that connects outside of the gaming world. It isn’t so much that the game features a leaning towards race or class, but it is our conditioning to what we’re seeing that allows the idea to gain power. If the concepts didn’t exist in everyday life, videos like the one below wouldn’t bring about the kind of reaction they do. It’d just be a fluke assh*le cop in a video game, something that there is no shortage of by the way.
Now hopefully the next episode goes back to deal with the size of video game character’s breasts or why Mario’s mustache is hiding a terrible secret. I think a dose of silliness is warranted.