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God of War Ragnarok writer champions Angrboda as part of "our own spin" on Norse mythology

God of War is "our interpretation of mythology, not history"

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Dixiedevil34d ago

Angrboda is the Jotunn mother of monsters. What’s Santa Monica Studios trying to say about black people?

locomorales34d ago

As is wrote down here, let's not be disingenuous and hypocritical here. Nobody cares that the Gof of War itself reinvented Greek mythology and all the representations to satisfy the game. Nobody cares about Marvel's Thor being in New York alongside Spiderman and the Hulk. Nobody connects the interpretation of Judaism and Christianity made in anime like Evangelion.

The point that is clear here is the racism of a very vocalic portion of the so-called gamers. Many are making arguments about "reverse racism" or "if you went with them, they would complain." All lie. What bothers is the fact that the character has black skin. That's it. Taking these ignorant folk fantasies from millennia ago and changing everything happens every day in all entertainment media. But the annoyance only happens when they put black people or women.

bangoskank34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

Dude, @locamorales , with all due respect please don't pull the racist card here. If that was the case why would I be super hyped for Forespoken, why would I be obsessed with Deathloop, and why did I love Miles Morales so much? Why am I against the way asian and indian characters were whitewashed during the infancy of cinema? Probably because I'm not racist. It's more like studios have become so lazy that they think race/gender equals bold and innovative when it's just a reflection of how racist they really are. If they were that interested in black culture why wouldn't they just make a brand new original coming of age series instead of rehashing an old show from the 90's with a black cast and slapping the title "Wonder Years" on it? How creative! Why not make a white version of "Good Times" that depicts struggling caucasian families living in less than desirable neighborhoods? That would actually be more compelling. If Hollywood or most game devs had any shred of creativity anymore they'd imagine worlds and lore steeped in black cultures, like Black Panther did. Tthat would actually be more respectful of black people that lazily throwing black people in Norse mythology or recreating an originally white-casted show with black people. It actually seems more insulting if you think about it, like throwing black people a bone instead of bothering to create something really cool like "Lovecraft Country".End rant.

Eamon33d ago (Edited 33d ago )

Bangoskank has hit the nail on the head perfectly.

We live in times were identity issues are extremely charged up leading to a society of continuous paranoia. Paranoia that one is not being inclusive enough. And Paranoia of those who are paranoid they're not being inclusive enough.

It's ruining culture from all sides. West was already heading this direction but went turbo mode when Trump got in power.

There's no genuine point of contention to Angrboda's character design. But one can't help but have a thought in the back of their mind of why such a character design was chosen. After all, like someone else mentioned, there haven't been any black characters in the God of War series - and specifically GoW 2018 which Ragnarok is a direct sequel to. This also includes the fact that it feels a bit off since the mythology is Norse. The Nordic regions in Europe are obviously natively white/blond/blue-eyed etc. One would think that Norse people that came up with the mythology would make Gods in their image. So obviously, you cannot but help have thoughts about authenticity. Regardless, there's nothing "wrong" about making Angrboda a black woman. It's merely a strange choice.

Some made a point about Kratos being a Greek character in a Nore mythos game as a way to counter the reaction. Well, the point of the story is Kratos is an outsider in a foreign land. He is constantly referred in such a way and some characters even express weariness to Kratos due to this fact.

Also, a note to remember - Kratos has always been voiced by a black man. This was a creative decision made long before the current identiy-charged times we lived in. Kratos's greyish ashen skin isn't his real skin colour. His original skin is a Mediterranean tan, since he is, well, Greek. But Santa Monica took an explicit decision to cast a black dude as the voice actor. At the time, not a single person had any issues or made a fuss. In fact, his voice actor was friggin awesome. Made Kratos such a blast to play as. The same for the second VA for 2018's Kratos. Could not think of a better recasting. Because Kratos has a long history and is a beloved character, nobody is complaining about the fact that a white character is being voiced by a black man. This includes the fact that nearly all characters have American accents despite all being Greek. Very few have non-American accents like Zeus and Gaia. Baldur and Thor also have American accents. All these are definitely creative decisions. To conclude, the reaction to Angrboda is distinct because of how unexpected it was in the established trend of creative choices. She is also a frost giant, so perhaps this was a lost opportunity to make her blue skinned? Then again, maybe she really is blue but what we saw in the trailer is more an "avatar" illusion? Well, we'll see.

AKS33d ago

@locomorales If it was a story based on an African mythology and one or more of the characters were made Caucasian, most of the social justice wingnuts would be losing their minds. Hardly anyone has a problem with whatever race is in a game as one might notice with the sales of some of Rockstar's games. However, it's a bit unusual to have a multicultural cast in Norse mythology just as it would be a bit peculiar to have Caucasian characters in African mythology. And you're probably not going to see many Latin or black samurai or ninjas in games based on feudal Japanese lore.

JTShiny233d ago (Edited 33d ago )

@locomorales
Would you type the same wall of text if it was the other way around i.e. whites in African mythology? ;)

ShadowWolf71233d ago

@bangoskank Dude, come off it. This isn't "lazily" doing anything of the sort. Angrboda, again, is not even human. Not. Even. Human. The Eddas themselves have no description of her, nothing in there saying "this giantess is a white woman". Nil.

Now, if you really wanna make a play on authenticity: were you upset when they made Brok blue and speak with a southwestern accent? When Sindri was made a germaphobe? When Tyr was stated to have visited many, many other cultures, and even got symbols from their languages tattooed on himself? When Baldur was made decidedly violent and unable to feel ANYTHING to the point it was driving him mad? All of those were part of this spin on this mythos too, and no one had an issue. But this one, this one they do. There's a reason THIS change is the one sparking something so visceral in people, and I think some self-reflection is in order.

barom33d ago

Honestly, Norse mythology lacks a lot description in general. Why people get upset, I really don't get. Here's an example you should be upset about if you really worried about "accuracy", TATTOOS DID NOT EXIST ANYWHERE IN NORSE MYTHOLOGY, yet you have so so many people not saying one word because in your mind it's okay for a Norse God and Goddess to have tattoos all over their body but oh no, a black character, yeah somehow that's messed up. Do you really think everything they do in the video game is an accurate portrayal? Heck even the whole Loki storyline does not match up with Norse Mythology.

Face it, if you have a problem with a black character in Norse mythology, YOU ARE RACIST. Did you forget that Vikings were some of the greatest travelers in the world, there's good evidence that suggest they discovered America. Is it then crazy to think they might've gone somewhere in Europe that has black people? Let's also not forget we're talking about Gods too. Better yet, have you heard of Ahmad ibn Fadlan? An Arab traveler who encountered Vikings. How about Kratos himself, you seem to have no problem believing he can travel to the North on his own. Perhaps this black character/God/Giant could've done the same? Is it really that impossible of a situation? No, only if you're a racist and trying to find a reason for this character not to exist.

S2Killinit33d ago

Lol 😆 love the comment in this section

SyntheticForm32d ago

@locomorales

"let's not be disingenuous and hypocritical here"

"What bothers is the fact that the character has black skin. That's it."

Except that *isn't* it, and you're purposefully misrepresenting and misinterpreting people while also omitting context in order that you may label them racist. That's just slimy and dirty. People like you are not going to simply be allowed to call others "racist" without evidence.

As bangoskank said, it's the laziness and seemingly one-way nature of these "inclusions" that people take issue with. There's also a matter of authenticity which people desire to certain, fitting degrees. Africans and their counterparts are incompatible with Norse mythology and Scandinavian culture, and it's not "racist" to not want them there.

Again, this also goes one way. Say I have photos from various teams; a Swedish team (all white), a Nigerian team (all black) and a Japanese team (all Asian.) You'd think this would be fine - especially given the regions - but they're not. Somehow, the Swedish (white) team isn't *diverse* enough, and could be racist in its all-white state and demands the inclusion of other races. Why? I'll tell you why - racism - pure and simple. There could be a number of reasons but I think the most common reason is born out of vengeance. White Europeans had their time at the top, and now it's another race's turn to take pole position, and if it doesn't fit the context we'll force it and call anyone that disagrees racist. To that I say no.

Finally, while we're still on this topic, I'll also address why the cheap, bite-sized pandering and shoehorning isn't benefitting anyone - least of all people of color.

We all know that it's far easier and far less expensive to simply race swap a character. New material doesn't have to be written and it costs less. It's lazy. Corporations can race swap an established character (usually white) while claiming to be "progressive" and showing people of color that they care about them. That isn't caring - it's just being lazy - and racist - and cheap - and destructive. There's no good reason why companies cannot come up with original scripts of African stories. They could have big budgets and be made mainstream and people (myself included) would love them. They're not interested in doing that. They're interested in subversion, scoring cheap points with communities of color, and being anti-white.

This concludes my response and rant.

fr0sty32d ago (Edited 32d ago )

Those of you whining about "what would it be like if there were whites in African mythology" are missing the point entirely... The fact is, people of color have been under and misrepresented in entertainment for centuries. So, depicting someone who should have historically been black as white only furthers that. Depicting someone previously depicted as white as a person of color, does the opposite. It gives a chance for someone who historically has not been given chances to appear in entertainment to be featured in a piece of popular entertainment. Yet, strangely, the "anti SJW" crowd only seems to get mad when one of these scenarios happens... I wonder why... why when a game about a Greek god having a norse God for a son (which already crosses ethnic boundaries as well, Greek people aren't exactly "white", many have olive skin, dark hair and brown eyes much like others from areas of the Mediterranean and middle east) does swapping out the ethnicity for another god with a black person suddenly become a bad thing? The irony seems to be lost here among many...

I'll see the point of those saying it was done lazily, but what of Kratos and Loki? That is just as lazy, shoehorning a Greek into white Norse mythology, yet no complaints.

Mr_Writer8532d ago

@bangoskank

That's under the assumption that the character was designed to be black and black only? Or that be her defining trait? Bit racist isn't it? That a character should be defined by their skin colour.

What if the actress was cast due to oh I don't know talent? Should a black women be told "nope sorry, you're perfect for the role, but you're black so we can't mess with the mythology".

Take Kratos as an example, a black man playing a white man, because he fit the role.

So let's not pretend that Santa Monica are bowing down to being "woke".

IGN even had a Norse expect analyse the game and even he said there is loads that isn't right, so this isn't some "like for like" exact match to the mythology.

Mr_Writer8532d ago

@Emon

"So obviously, you cannot but help have thoughts about authenticity"

You're playing a game based on fairy tales, even in the first game they weren't authentic.

https://youtu.be/Qs7JHbVkB-...

And do you not think black people traveled out to Europe?

https://scandinaviafacts.co...

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lodossrage34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

I'm black and I wasn't even remotely thinking anything racially offensive

Not everything is about race

SullysCigar34d ago

It is for those looking for reasons to be offended. Sadly, not everyone is levelheaded.

Writing for games or movies is a minefield these past few years. Some people seem intent on fabricating sinister hidden meanings and then shouting them out in the hope they can cancel someone. Anyone.

dbcoops34d ago

I think that was Dixiedevil's attempt at reductio ad absurdum, but I could be wrong.

Noskypeno33d ago

@Sullyscigar, I try not listening to what the msm and it's followers tries to tell me about what is or isn't offensive. They somehow think "good people on both sides" is an offensive message.

SeTTriP33d ago (Edited 33d ago )

Because your on a website dominated by white males and you want to fit in.

Locomorales made very valid points.stop brown 👃. Your part of the problem.

Keltech33d ago

Honestly she looks more like a Alaskan native (Eskimo) to me.

To some people is about race. It's because some people listen to the Ben shapiro's and tucker carlson's telling them Hollywood is trying to cancel their Caucasian culture. So one small change in a Norwegian mythology drives them crazy.

NoFanBoy33d ago

It is to some sad people.

SeTTriP33d ago

And look at how many agrees you got just for being a kiss ass.

This must've made your year?keep feeding the troll, you fit right in that box.

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Inverno34d ago

Leave that kind of thinking back on Twitter, son

CobraKai34d ago

Let it go man. Kratos is voiced by a black man twice. What’s that say? Absolutely nothing. Same thing with Angrboda.

Back to the article, I dunno why people are making a big deal of the little things. Norse Mythology is the backdrop, not a historical retelling. If it was, Kratos wouldn’t even be the lead character.

Shane Kim34d ago

What? You didn't know Kratos was in Norse Mythology?

locomorales34d ago

Yeah, but Kratos is a white man. So he doesn't bother the so-called gamers.

Eonjay34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

I mean that like saying she should have been white because that would be less offensive if we follow your logic.

Say less.

bangoskank34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

Right? I wasn't aware of any Nordic black people living in this timeline. Guess they were monsters... We get it, black people shouldn't be left out, but they also shouldn't be shoehorned into plots where there presence makes absolutely no sense. Disney is doing the same thing too. How about celebrating African heritage by making more movies about that culture's mythology and folklore. Would be more interesting and more respectful imho.

TricksterArrow34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

It's a game. About gods and monsters. No realism needed. Not everything needs something to say or celebrate anything. Black people don't need to be protagonists or exist at all in media only when the game revolves around race. A game can be just a game.

Flewid63833d ago (Edited 33d ago )

I would agree if it made any difference. Adding diversity to a FICTIONAL setting doesnt sound like shoehorning. It sounds like fiction. lol.

The entirety of Norse mythology is exactly that.... mythology. I.e. - fake. It's pretty telling when Gods & Monsters dont make you bat an eye, but god forbid someone with a tan shows up & suddenly that totally breaks the immersion lmao.

porkChop33d ago

Why does it fucking matter? If someone is telling a purely fictional story why are they not allowed to have a black character? The entire story is fake, loosely based on myths that are also not real. No one bats an eye, but suddenly because there's a black woman it's too unbelievable? She could be fucking tie-dye for all I care.

No one seems to care that Kratos doesn't exist in Greek or Norse mythology. There was someone named Cratos, but they have nothing in common with Kratos. They made Kratos up. And according to the lore Kratos was originally dark skinned. Black. Both versions voiced by black actors. Apparently that's fine, but God forbid they add a black woman.

You can play a game about some dude hopping through different mythologies killing all the make-believe gods, but the second you see a black character you're pulled out of the experience? That's where you draw the line on authenticity?

Have you ever thought maybe black characters aren't the problem? Maybe the problem is people like you.

Yppupdam33d ago (Edited 33d ago )

Well, to be honest here, If we go by SJW logic this "would" be considered "cultural appropriation" But, normal people know that cultural appropriation is something only extremely stupid people believe is a thing. Frankly, at the end of the day, who cares. As for the likeness/voice actor screaming "black people exist!!!" on her twitter feed is so laughably cringe. This feels more like scripted drama than anything else.

SyntheticForm32d ago

@Flewid

Why not add helicopters then? I mean, it's a fictional setting after all. Why not diversify it with helicopters?

Sure, it's fiction, but within that fiction exists a degree of structure - Norse, European, and Scandinavian structure to be precise. Disagreeing with the type of incompatibility we're seeing doesn't make us racist.

Your boneheaded insistence that fiction is fake therefore nothing matters is patently absurd.

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PrinceAli33d ago

looooooooooooooooooooooooool!! !! This is probably my favourite take in all of this haahaha

Flewid63833d ago

As a black person, I can assure you absolutely nothing.

ShadowWolf71233d ago

Y'all know Angrboda isn't even human, right?

Y'all also know that she's clearly a kid here and Jormungander, a supposed child of her and Loki, already lives?

Just... maybe stop trying to produce a "gotcha" moment.

Redrex700033d ago

what in the world how did people end up talking about racism

343_Guilty_Spark33d ago

I'm curious if they'll ever use one as a main character. No one has done African mythology and I'm not talking Egyptian. African gods and goddesses might be even messier than Nordic and Hellenic Gods.

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justadelusion34d ago

interesting way to say 'its 2021, we have to do our part in pandering'

Killer2020UK34d ago

Not everything that isn't familiar to you is "pandering" to someone else.

And who cares what colour skin someone is? It's as inconsequential as hair colour.

dbcoops34d ago

In some cases though it is clearly being forced for diversity sake, I'll let people make up there own mine about that here but I can tell you this, people do care about skin color if you don't think so try to make a Shaft movie with a white guy as the lead character and see what happens. Seems how inconsequential it is depends on what color were referring to nowadays.

Crothyk34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

@dbcoops Hollywood needs to come out with a movie called "Martin Luther King" starring Ryan Gosling as MLK. The outrage would be *chef's kiss*.

ravens5234d ago

Or maybe put a movie out about egyptian gods and have them played by white people...oh wait.

antikbaka33d ago

then why doesn't it work the other way?

Sunny_D33d ago

dbcops

how is it pandering?

Last I checked Angrdoba is a Giant. Which is a mythical race…. I also don’t recall a Greek demigod being in Norse mythology. Or the fact that Loki is the son of a Greek demigod…. I guess no one has a problem with a Greek man having the voices of black men either?

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WeAreLegion34d ago

This site is such a shithole of racists. Please ban me. I've been here long enough.

dbcoops33d ago (Edited 33d ago )

People talking about race and not agreeing with your particular views on it doesn't make them "racist", so sick of people throwing that accusation around because its the easy go to. Feel free to leave any time you like no one is forcing you to be here.

ravens5234d ago

@ justadelusion.
Pandering to who? I'm black and I've never said oh I won't play gow if it doesn't put a person of color in the game. I've beat all of them and never said that...? Also again there were people in Scandinavian countries from 1700s also black vikings.

Eamon33d ago (Edited 33d ago )

To be fair, Vikings did take slaves from any culture/people that weren't them, so of course there'd be descendants of races slaves of various growing up, living in and assimilating in Scandinavia. This isn't limited to Vikings, other nations did that too and you'd find the one or two descendant families usually living in a port town.

But in reality, the overwhelming majority of Norse people were homogeneous. Migration from far away lands were extremely minimal compared to today. Not even comparable. Obviously because of long perilous journeys and the lack of super fast travel. Which is why most European countries were still homogeneous up till the end of 20th century.

Some might say the writing of a writer reflects his inner psyche which itself is influenced by the times. And I think this is basically it. The writer made a conscious decision to make Angrboda black. We'll never know if this was an act of pandering since we cannot read his mind. Who knows? Perhaps the main influence was due to the casting process. These days in videogames many characters resemble the voice actors. But one cannot help but have these thoughts because of the times we currently live in.

Redrex700033d ago

it has become a new trend that why
it just sound good on paper

TricksterArrow34d ago

Anyone that is not a white male or a sexy female appears in a game: OH MY GOD, THE PANDERING.

Don't be so sensitive.

Killer2020UK33d ago

This^

I swear, the right is far more sensitive and fragile than the left these days. Ironic given that's one of the key criticisms levelled at the latter by the former.

dbcoops33d ago

There's nothing wrong with people questioning the validity of a character of African decent being in a game about Norse mythology which clearly looks like forced diversity and therefore pandering. Pretty sure if a game was made about African culture and the lead character was white you and others would be singing a very similar song as those protesting here its just the lyrics would be slightly different.

"Don't be so sensitive." A bit ironic since you're clearly upset by other peoples opinions on the matter.

babadivad33d ago

Nice strawman you have there.

DeathTouch32d ago

"There's nothing wrong with people questioning the validity of a character of African decent being in a game about Norse mythology".

Are the same people questioning why a Greek god is partaking in Norse mythology and killing Norse gods? Or why there are characters with blue skin? Why do people draw the line and take offense only on the dark skinned character? Is it really about "not respecting or following true Norse mythology" the issue here? Or is there something else behind it?

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TheDibbler33d ago

Changing things up isn’t necessarily pandering. Look at Nick Fury from Marvel. He was just another boring character until they changed him to Samuel Jackson in both the movies and comics. This was definitely an improvement for the character and I don’t see anyone complaining that it was a forced diversity move because they were happy with the results.

Noskypeno33d ago

That's the thing, the msm wants us to think white people are boring. I don't think it's possible for them to create a black character that is repulsive, they can make a black character obsessed with WoW, have bad hygiene and still be considered interesting.

wwinterj33d ago

I mean Brok in God of War 2018 is blue so nah.

Sayai jin33d ago

A comment the insecure say. They done enough pandering to the world's minoity for a long time and they are a minoirty in gamers too. Buckle up, becuase that's the way things are going to go from now on. Except you will see more diversity as we traverse into the future.

PS-Gamer-198633d ago (Edited 33d ago )

Yeah it is sad that these lunatics in all of media with their fight for "minority representation" are actually making it harder for us what the call "people of color"

People of every race outside of the blind woke cloud are (rightfully!!) fed up with this kind of Bs. And there are these apologists who don't hesitate to call people racist.

Wouldn't it be far more rewarding and meaningful to make up new compelling stories that highlight POC main characters?
Forcing those roles in everywhere is just akward.

Sayai jin33d ago

They have been pandering to whites since forever. Especually since whites are minority in the world and relatively soon in the US.

babadivad33d ago

I hate the term "people of color". When I was younger, calling someone "colored" was a quick way to catch an ass whooping.

specialguest33d ago

Every recent and upcoming game has to have a black female character. It can't be a black male. It specifically has to be a black female. The pandering is out of control

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TheHan34d ago

Sad that they must cater to politics within their game, yet fans wanted to make comparisons that GoW kept to the tales of mythology which isn’t the case.

locomorales34d ago

Northern European drunken inventions from a millennium ago have no rules whatsoever. The studio coming up with something else doesn't offend anything that has any foothold in reality.

frostypants34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

While I agree, I don't think general sentiment would be the same if a game was based on African mythology (which would actually be cool) and some known character from that lore was presented as a white ginger dude. "Just our