If there's one word that's severely overused in the 2016, it's 'offended'. In gaming this year we've seen outcries over everything from scantily clad characters in beat 'em ups (heaven forbid) to a whole load of finger-pointing, mostly at developers who were previously minding their own business. In many instances, it feels like many people have swapped out the sensation of just reacting to something, with that of taking offence.
To that end, it's important to really take stock of what you're witnessing, the intent behind it, and whether so much outrage and furore is truly deserved. It's way too easy for only a few key words of a given story to be highlighted or taken out of context (like Facebook's garbled Trending algorithm, for example), resulting in only a fraction of any full picture being considered.
The games industry may be one of the biggest in all entertainment, thereby meaning that any stumbles and public pratfalls get witnessed by millions of eagle-eyed consumers. These are just a handful of those headline-grabbers, selected because, really, you do need to see them for yourself...
11. Hotline Miami 2's 'Rape Scene'
Even if you're totally fine with any type of controversial content being included (which I am, in theory), it's a strange beat to open your twin-stick shooter with an attempted rape sequence. Developer Dennaton Games even included the option to skip it in the main menu, potentially showing that they didn't fully believe in their 'vision' for this grimy, blood-soaked opener.
Regardless, Hotline Miami 2 explores the ramifications of how society and the media react to controversial subject matter, seeing a film director paint the original game's anti-hero as a sexual predator. This manifests at the end of the tutorial level as your actor pushes a woman to the floor, drops his trousers and begins to climb on top of them.
Thankfully, the director yells "Cut!" and you realise it's all staged, but that didn't stop thousands of publications running with "Hotline Miami 2 has rape scene!" anyway, alongside all sorts of descriptions of the scene that simply weren't true.
The bottom line remains - is rape acceptable in this context, simply to make a point about media distortion?