PETA is an organization that is allegedly there for animal safety and rights. Despite the many controversies that prove less than pleasant aspects about the company, they continue to make their presence known to the public and this time their latest target is the latest game from Ubisoft: Far Cry 5.
Far Cry 5 has a setting where you can have many adorable animal companions including a cougar, an adorably loyal puppers, and even a bear named Cheeseburger. There are also some moments of animal violence, but that wasn't what caught PETA's ire. Nope, it was the fishing.
The German sect of the organisation released a statement, seen below, is all about how fish are more intelligent than even apes and though players can kill a variety of animals in-game for crafting materials, they draw the line at fish:
"In some intelligence tests, fish fare better than chimpanzees, orangutans and capuchin monkeys . They have a complex social life and sometimes close close friendships. Some fish sing like birds at dawn in chorus, others protect their young, by the offspring in case of danger in the mouth or guard the eggs for weeks . But above all: you feel anxiety, stress and pain. In addition to international scientific studies, the Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Federal Research Institute for Animal Health, comes to the conclusion in its statement for the Federal Government that "fish are capable of pain perception and should accordingly be treated and protected as sensitive living beings."
"Fishing means luring fish into a trap, exposing them to fear and shortness of breath for minutes or even hours, as well as to an agonizing death struggle before being killed or often cut alive." Tanja Breining, marine biologist and specialist for fish and marine animals at PETA. "Today we know that a fish is somebody, not something, and it is an indictment to promote fishing. Fish are curious vertebrates with individual personalities. "
"While in the previous game fish were killed with explosives, the player in Far Cry 5 can catch different kinds of fish with the fishing rod and gets different points of view depending on the type of fish. PETA now appeals to the German representation of the game developer, the Ubisoft GmbH in Dusseldorf, in the future no longer to market video games in Germany, glorifying and banalizing the hunting and killing of fish or other animals. The animal rights organization proposes instead to develop games with free-living animals that do not glorify killing as a pastime."
It eventually leads into a story about "realising poor fish," which you can read here. So far, Ubisoft hasn't responded to PETA - but do they really need to? The statement is outlandish, a bit hypocritcal, and very much fishing a huge point: it's a video game. There are far more brutal moments in the title that center around animals and the people fighting against this cult-driven narrative. Now we just wait to see what Ubisoft has to say ...