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back to article Gamers cash in on LittleBigPlanet delay

The value of the PlayStation 3 game LittleBigPlanet has rocketed on eBay as sellers attempt to capitalise upon Sony's decision to temporarily withdraw the title, found to contain lines from the Koran. LBP_cover_ebay Sony's LittleBigPlanet: delayed Sony announced late last week that it had chosen to delay the game’s worldwide …

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Boffin

PC Crowd 1 - 0 Everyone Else

Is it just me or is this being a little over-cautious.

I mean the content is a couple of lyrics of an independant song that was licensed for use by Media Molecule.

And this is all because Muslims dont like the Qu'ran to be accompanied by music or re-interpreted and find it highly offensive.

Part of me says this world needs to grow up.

Part of me says this is a little bit of publicity to increase the lauch prowess.

Big Brother specs, because after all he is watching all you do.

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Anonymous Coward

Sony are a bunch of cowards

Could they have wet their pants over this any faster? I guess a screaming, foaming at the mouth, kalashnikov wielding fundamentalist is far more scary than a Vicar wagging his finger at you while giving you a stern look.

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Anonymous Coward

bias anyone?

I'm not a practicing Christian but i find it worrying that Muslims are always treated with such tender gloves :/ wonder if they worried about rock song comments about God/Satanic references as much?

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Cowards

I am furious about this.

This is outright cowardice from Sony.

A few months ago they release a game set in an exact digital replica of a cathedral. The church complained (with some justification) that they were not happy about such a violent sequence being set inside an exact replica of their place of worship. Sony basically said STFU and released it anyway, because it is the Christians and no-one is bothered about pissing them off.

Now because there is a slim chance of offending the Muslims a game is withdrawn. Cowards.

Incidentally, over the years there have been lots of songs released with extracts from the Koran in them. I don't ever remember there being any outcry. 'Bohemian Rhapsody' by Queen for example is still on sale and made it to number 1 in the UK twice. No-one has ever bombed anyone over that to my knowledge...

Sony - I think you should grow some balls.

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Coat

PC Crowd?

The article clearly states that this is a PS3 title...

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Hmmm

So it's bad to license a track with these words in it for a game, but presumably the CD it came from is perfectly fine. Note that no-one has named the original track name or artist name, and presumably if you so wished you could still go and by the music.

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Stop

It's a bit of a double standard from Sony...

...but then Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells rarely fills his SUV with petrol and drives it into the side of an airport.

See Christians? If you want some respect, quit all that love nonsense and blow some stuff up.

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Muslims 9023823 - 0 Everyone else

Unbelievable. I honestly wish people would stop bowing to Religion (muslims are the majority) and develop a pair of testicals. So what, two lines of something was included in a game, which a vast majority of muslims will never ever ever play, due to the fact, that most live in impoverished countries. I mean, when was the last time you seen a muslim from an impoverished country, playing call of duty on the xbox 360?

the reason that Sony did not relaunch R:FOM - Was that religion in this country is not a big thing. No-one other than church leaders gave two hoots about it. I can't see Archbishop of canterbury settling down at night to play R:FOM - So why are they complaining ?

This whole PC nonsense needs to be banished into room 101.

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Happy

Amazing.

I picked up a copy of this game late last week (hourse before it was withdrawn), and I have to say, it's simply stunning, I have never seen or playing anything as unique as this on PC or console. I would go as far as saying groundbreaking...

It seems the wait for the reissued discs is quite short, 1 week in the US, 3 weeks eveywhere else, so it will be in the shops early novemeber in the UK. Plenty of time for the Xmas rush.

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Rob
Bronze badge
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Here's an idea

By all means let me know if it's a completely stupid idea, but when discovering said lines from the Koran, would it not be prudent to ask a Muslim Scholar or Imam(s) on whether they think it would be insulting/offence?

If nothing else this could be a lot of fuss about nothing, Islamics may not be bothered about it in which case this is just another PR story that isn't doing them any favours yet so far it doesn't appear they have had any say in it.

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Unhappy

So the terrorists have won.

Because some stupid prats like to blow themselves up the entire bloody world gives them special treatment.

Religion (AKA My-imaginary-friend-is-better-than-yours) should just be banned from all media channels.

If anything is going to get censored it should be the intolerant views of a minority, not the perfectly harmless things that they get their knickers in a twist over.

I don't give a flying s**t about islam, it should not be intruding into my life like this!

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Stop

...and the madness continues...

Quick! Ban the internet as it contains the entire Koran on some websites, and there are pictures and music and all kinds of things! Horror of horrors!

Let's note that Sony didn't relaunch the other game even though it offended Christians. Are Muslims getting special treatment (again)?

Could some please also ban electricity as it allows us to type Koran onto such an infidel site as El Reg.

Bah.

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Gates Horns

Lets be honest.

Those ranting about Sony not having the balls to release this as-is, would also be the first to complain if Sony had done just that. To these people, Sony can never do the right thing.

it's also clear that most of the posters here also can't grasp the fact that the lyrics are in a 3rd party song, that's at least 2 years old, and by a grammy winning artist. Hardly Sony or Media Moleclues fault.

The great news for Sony, is all the great publicity, and stupid "must have it" pricing of the title on ebay will just propell this title further into the public eye, and generate more sales.

No Publicity is Bad Publicity....

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Paris Hilton

False comparison

To those equating with the Manchester Cathedral decision I think its completely daft.

1) Resistance Fall of Man

Deliberately chosen landmark which is major plot point and meant as part of the mood/character of the alien invasion and devastation of a city.

2) Little Big Planet Case

Accidentally included religious phrase in incidental music that producers were not aware of.

The difference is firstly the artistic intent and secondly the cost or effect of changing. It needn't be pandering to Muslims if artistically this phrase was undesirable when it was realised.

Would even Paris confuse these situations?

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Stop

There's a HUGE difference...

There's a huge difference between this case and the case of Resistance: Fall of Man, and no, it's not jihads, bombs or kalashnikovs: it is the fact that while R:FoM was offensive to some people, it was neither blasphemy or sacrilege. However, the quoting of the Qu'ran outside of the appropriate context is indeed sacrilege to a Muslim.

I am a Christian, not a Muslim. While I can understand some people being upset about the cathedral incident, I can accept Sony's decision on the matter -- this is a subjective matter and you can't please all of the people all of the time.

However, they have certainly made the right decision here, as objectively we *know* that the usage of the Qu'ran in this context is a grave and serious matter.

As for the original recordings, I imagine that they are OK in that they're written by Muslims for Muslims, and are therefore considered "praise". Little Big Planet is not designed specifically for Muslims, so is considered "entertainment".

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Black Helicopters

@Aortic Aneurysm

"when was the last time you seen a muslim from an impoverished country, playing call of duty on the xbox 360?"

They don't need to play it, they live it, name an impoverished country muslim country which doesn't have radical factions that go around shooting each other because "my faction interprets the Qu'ran differently to yours"?

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People, please.

Just to clarify something... Mulsims != Terrorists, try not to generalise.

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Anonymous Coward

Get over yourselves

I'd say that The Register becomes more like the Daily Mail day by day, but that'd be an understatement, The Register nowadays really IS the Daily Mail in IT format.

Comparing the Cathedral situation to this one is rediculous, the Cathedral thing hadn't blown up until Resistance was already widely distributed to the public, this in contrast is a pre-release realisation of the problem.

I too am an atheist but I also have the ability to respect the fact that others think differently and have their beliefs. Bringing the whole "terrorist" thing into it is pathetic, there's 1.3billion muslims out there and not even a noticeable percentage of them engage in terrorist activities anymore than you might call atheists rapists because there have been some atheist rapists or than you might call christians paedophiles just because a few people are guilty of such crimes.

There is no special treatment of muslims here any more than if there had been something with racist, sexist or say homophobic undertones in the game discovered PRIOR to release. This is what companies do, because offending 1.3 billion people in the world is not good business sense, particularly when Sony are already struggling with PS3 hardware and software sales.

Yes I think the world would be better without all the problems religion causes but no, attacking it and calling favouritism when it's just good business sense really is not the way to reach that goal. If atheists continue to do what they've always done - be the leaders in science, many of the most intelligent people out there then that's how things will change. Stooping to the level of attacking religions when it's simply not merited is completely the wrong way to go about things and is exactly why we have religious extremists the people you're crying so hard about in the first place!!

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christians...

well, lets face it - millions dead in the face of christianity. a bit of the pot calling the kettle black to then say we dont want violence in a church.

the fact is many games before have had levels containing a church - this one was in a war against aliens - makes a change from against 'heretics' and those of us who believe god is almost as real as the tooth fairy/santa!

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Jim
Flame

Sacrilege Boy

And what about the carbon cost of recall? Greenpeace should complain to Sony too.

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RE: Bluexman

PC = Politically Correct

rather shortsighted of myself to pop another PC acronym on an IT website.

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Dont bring Manchester Cathedral into it!

"A few months ago they release a game set in an exact digital replica of a cathedral. The church complained (with some justification) that they were not happy about such a violent sequence being set inside an exact replica of their place of worship. Sony basically said STFU and released it anyway, because it is the Christians and no-one is bothered about pissing them off"

Slightly twisted view on what actualy happend. Sony released a game in November 2006 that didnt have one single complaint until June 2007 when the main complaint from the cathedral was COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT! The game was out for 7 months and during that time not one Christian played it? Or is it more likely lots of Christians played it they just didnt get offended by something so trivial. The Cathedral even shamelessly used a couple of shootings that happend a few days early to draw attention to their Copyright Infringement claim. They didnt want the game banned, they just wanted the images of Manchester Cathedral removed, not the cathedral completly just the likeness oh and a substantial donation as well.

"Note that no-one has named the original track name or artist name, and presumably if you so wished you could still go and by the music."

The song is Tapha Niang by Toumani Diabaté who is actualy a devote Muslim. The main point and probably reason for recall is the translation of the quotes. What they say is "Every soul shall have the taste of death" and "All that is on earth will perish". Now considering this is a family game and the main character is a very marketable plushy I would wager religion plays a very small part in why it was recalled

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@AC

"They don't need to play it, they live it, name an impoverished country muslim country which doesn't have radical factions that go around shooting each other because "my faction interprets the Qu'ran differently to yours"?"

This is indeed true, I'm useless at anaolgies :(

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@Dan Wilkinson

The offending track is Toumani Diabate's "Tapha Niang". Some Muslims find quoting scripture in a secular music context offensive. This seems a perfectly reasonable reaction to me; it wasn't Media Molecule's intention to offend, and unlike redesigning an entire level of an FPS from scratch is fairly simple to fix. I'd suggest that it's the people who can't wait a couple of weeks to play a game who are over-reacting here, not those whose religious sensitivities are being courted for extra sales.

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Stop

As a muslim..

Being a Muslim I can tell you the reason why *some* people *may* find it offensive is because we believe that the Quran is the word of God quoted directly and so should not be accompanied with background music or made into a song, but should be listened to in a quiet environment and be contemplated upon.

However the fact that this song exists and nobody has kicked up a fuss or burnt down embassies shows that most i.e. 99.99999% of Muslims are not bothered by this and have more important things to deal with in life, perhaps the PC brigade are being more Muslim than the Muslims?

The chances are if this game was released in its previous form most people would not even have realised.

Stop sign because I think we should all take life a lot less seriously.

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Waste of money

What the eBay sellers are probably failing to note is that the second the game is released a patch goes live that will promptly remove the offending track from the game before you can even boot it up.

Unless you disable PSN functionality every time you play it of course, which means you'll never see any user-created levels, nor be able to publish your own, making the game pretty moot.

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@ Simon C

I see your sarcasm detector has not been set at a sensitive enough level. Please turn to 11.

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Alert

@ Ryan

> "If anything is going to get censored it should be the intolerant views of a minority, not the perfectly harmless things that they get their knickers in a twist over."

Just be careful ranting about the intolerance of others.

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Unhappy

0 day patch was ready

according to MediaMolecule (developers for those not in the know) but Sony said no, because people who don't play online won't get it, er sorry but who the hell buys LBP for the single player story, I think you'll find every promo material for LBP bigs up the 'community' aspect

Sony really have let a lot of fans down on this and tarnished Mm's brand

ps a lot of muslim's on the PS community boards say there not offended, afaik only one complained, and the song was written by a muslim, it's on itunes too cant remember name though

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Stop

Is the music of Toumani Diabate offensive on its own?

...or just when it is in a computer game?

The critically acclaimed artist has been around long enough to have given any particularly dogmatic cleric the opportunity to slap a fatwa on him if his work is truely offensive. If this had happened we'd have heard about it in a seperate bout of moral indignation. We havent, so it hasnt, so it isnt.

Combine the music with a computer game though its a different kettle of hobby horses. Sony have overreacted and the whole "Muslims vs The Rest Of Civilization" issue is another tiny bit more devisive.

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Offending who?

Given American sensitivities to anything faintly Muslim at the moment I'm sure bad sales or a boycott are the major motivator. Just look at the hysterics over the Fisher Price doll who's babbling sounded a bit like Islam.

Also the kind of silliness you get when someone wears an unamerican scarf (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/7427206.stm).

And while I'm at it:

"They don't need to play it, they live it, name an impoverished country muslim country which doesn't have radical factions that go around shooting each other because "my faction interprets the Qu'ran differently to yours"?"

As opposed to the UK where this happens between Christians.

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Joke

To why not the other one

Simple answer really, Christians don't tend to go all *shock* *horror* and blow things up

Sony probably already worry enough about bomb carrying penguinistas to want to add our Muslim brethren to the list 8)

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Anonymous Coward

PC

"Some Muslims find quoting scripture in a secular music context offensive."

I think the list of things that don't offend _some_ Muslims would be shorter then the list of things that do.

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AC

I haven't seen this many anonymous posts since the 'Church of Scientology' stories.

@bluesxman - You're funny :-)

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more important things to deal with...

"the fact that this song exists and nobody has kicked up a fuss or burnt down embassies shows that most i.e. 99.99999% of Muslims are not bothered by this and have more important things to deal with in life"

...like protesting against the Jewel of Medina? Or dogmatically following the fatuous fatwa against Salman Rushdie? Or actually murdering interpreters of the same book? Or blowing up ancient statues of Buddha? Or persecuting Christians in Pakistan? Or shooting aid workers "for spreading Christianity"? Chrisitianity has a very dodgy past. Islam has a dodgy present also.

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Happy

Some religious types

My son's mother's parents had a hissy fit when he defended his brother who had said 'For God's Sake!" He was made to sit on the stairs and miss his tea (he is 12). Fortunately he lives with me most of the time, in an antitheist household.

However, a great friend of mine, who is a _real_ Christian (i.e. always has homeless people sleeping on his floor, always working in a soup kitchen etc) was horrified when I told him and simply said, quietly "do you think Jesus would have made him sit on the naughty step?" He opined that a small minority of religious people, whatever their faith, think that religion is about rules for others and not about how you should live your own life.

When I first read this story I had the knee-jerk reaction of an antitheist, compariing it unfavourably with the R:FoM affair - if Sony had had the guts to stand up to Christains, why not Muslims? But by the time I had read all the comments I had changed my mind. However much you don't respect / disrespect other people's beliefs, why not avoid offending them if you can easily do so?

As often with El Reg, the comments are the best reason for reading. Now, let's all share the love and keep our conflict where it belongs: within the confines of video games.

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Flame

pathetic

No doubt this comment will be removed from fears of some all powerful being but these muslim complaints seriously need to get into 2008.

We can say what the fuck we like about the Queen without being beheaded - to her face if desired (see Royal Variety Performances from numerous comedians) spend all day slating the Catholic church, what makes them so fucking special or over sensitive?

Absolutely nothing, and the sooner people stop pandering to this bullshit the better.

Next we'll have the pope requesting Pulp Fiction be destroyed because a passage from the bible is used in reference to violence.

pathetic

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Black Helicopters

@ AC "As a muslim.."

"perhaps the PC brigade are being more Muslim than the Muslims?"

Wouldn't be the first time. I'm friends with a bunch of Muslims, and they get as confused and pissed off as I do when primary schools ban "3 little pigs" and Local Authorities (Sheffield Council for one) refuse to allow funerals of non-Muslims on a Saturday. Unfortunately, it's these idiots making these decisions that fuel anti-Islamic feeling because everyone assumes it's the Muslims themselves that are complaining, rather than a couple of middle-class white idiots and the occasional, equally-idiotic, Abu Hamza wannabe shouting about how "Merry Christmas" offends Muslims because it contains the word "christ".

</rant>

Black heli cos Abu has probably just declared a jihad on me.

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I'm offended at games, so Sony should stop making them.

Bumhug, you just quoted the Koran.... on a non-religious site..... everyone RUN!

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P J

what?

A particular word from the English dictionary, specifically, "the" offends me. Please refrain from using this word in any and all publications, games, songs, thoughts, nightmares and daydreams.

Failure to do so will cause no harm at all to anyone, and in particular, no fluffy non-existent fairytale creatures will be harmed in ones reading of such for-mentioned publications.

This message will not self destruct, ever, and once again, please... NOBODY CARES! RELEASE LITTLEBIGPLANET NOW FFS!

Jesu.... oops, nearly offended someone there!!!!!!!

...I wonder if the singe/songwriter has had to employ bodyguards after the release of the information that he/she has used some "words". :-0

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Anonymous Coward

Please, please...

The reason for the recall? Do you remember what happened with the Mohamed comics? Christians and Jews don't send out suicide bombers when you piss them off. Even today, Salman Rushdie is still under a death threat. So, yes, pull the damn thing back and get rid of the tracks before someone gets killed.

That answer might be offensive to some, but it's the truth.

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Will probably buy this game I never heard of, kudos Sony marketing!

So I never heard of this game. Due to all the press, I've now seen screenshots. It looks quite impressive.

I'll probably be getting this game that I never heard of before all this.

Whether planned or not, Sony couldn't have done a better job getting the name of this game out there!

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Go

@AC: Do you remember what happened with the Mohamed comics?

Yes, what fun! Muslims running through the streets of London calling for our deaths, and what did the police do? Nothing. So much for the laws about incitement to riot, murder, terrorism, etc.

Do you remember the Gillian Gibbons affair? Oh, super joy joy. I have a little teddy bear called Mohammed sitting by the computer, reminding me that if there really were such a thing as an 'allah', it would've struck me down the moment I commissioned the creation of the little cutie.

As it stands, Mo sits there nicely, as does this particular Anonymous Coward - safe in the knowledge that one made-up deity is just as unlikely to strike me down as every other made-up deity.

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Paris Hilton

All the fun.....

...of the Daily Mail without having to get ink on my fingers.

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Bronze badge

double standard?

So they'll gladly have games that shoot up churches and blaspheme against Christian values (or Bhuddist, or others), but they pull the game because one freaking soundtrack contains a vague reference to the Koran?

I ain't religious, but even I can see the completely absurd double-standard here. Of course, it's been a few hundred years now since Christians have waged holy war against those who annoy them. The Muslims seem to still be in that stage of their religious growth. That might explain said double standard.

The need to change it from "freedom OF religion" to "freedom FROM religion". Bloody idiots.

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Alien

Tethered Goat

Is everyone 100% confident that this is about a dodgy song or is this a good way for Sony to effectively stagger the release of LBP (and load on their servers). It just seem odd don’t you think that a beta has been running for some time and no-one complained, apart from the operational boys who were stressing about the lack of inherent scalability of their back end.

Also, I find it amazing that a game capable of really breaking down barriers and bring people of all faiths together in one little big world has now incited more race hate than 911.

Alien, has I don’t want to be part of this world and was planning on moving into the little big planet on Friday.

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Somewhere on the internet...

Not all Muslims find it offensive, no. But not all readers of The Register (a decidedly smaller population itself) were planning on buying this game in the first couple of weeks of release. There's almost certainly somewhere on the Internet where a load of Muslims who don't particularly care about PS3 platformers are accusing teenagers of blowing their whining out of all proportion because they have to wait a few days before they can start playing.

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Marketing ploy

This stunt smells of marketing imo. Get the game's attention in the news before its release. Now even more people are aware of it.

Like someone above stated, they could have kept quiet and patched it silently over PSN.

What's next? The fact that Sackboy's woolly flesh is brown? Bring on the racist comments.

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