When Outriders released last week, one particular line of dialogue raised a lot of eyebrows from players. In the game, the player character reminisces with Jakub Dabrowski about Earth, and times that the pair saved one another. Jakub references a time that he saved the player from a mob in Damascus, while the player recalls a time they saved their friend from a “redneck mob storming D.C.” Some players understandably connected that with the riot that took place at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th. However, Kotaku reached out to Square Enix regarding the line, and it turns out that the whole thing is just a coincidence.
“We wrote and recorded the script for Outriders a couple of years ago and all aspects of it are entirely fictional and related to the backstory of the game. Any similarities to real-world events are purely coincidental,” a Square Enix official told Kotaku.
Players can hardly be blamed for making the connection. The Capitol riot remains fresh in the minds of many people, and the FBI is still searching for some of those involved. That said, it’s likely that the line truly is coincidental. After all, video game development is a very long process, and Outriders has been in the works since 2015. It’s hard to say for certain when recording might have occurred, but it seems pretty unlikely that developer People Can Fly would change the game’s script just a few months before release to add in a reference to an attack that left five dead, and several injured.
Outriders takes place on the planet Enoch in the far future. The Outriders were sent to prepare the planet for colonization after several disasters left Earth uninhabitable. Presumably, the “redneck mob” is actually related to some later disaster that happen on the planet, as opposed to something from the year 2021. Given all that has happened to Earth by the 21st century in the game, there are likely a lot of other things that could have caused the mob.
Have you started playing Outriders yet? Were you surprised to hear this line in the game? Let us know in the comments or share your thoughts directly on Twitter at @Marcdachamp to talk all things gaming!