Update: Ubisoft confirmed that the slider is purely cosmetic. We've updated the story to reflect these developments.
South Park: The Fractured But Whole promises to be a South Park game through and through. With series writers Trey Parker and Matt Stone on board, they've added some social commentary that their show sometimes pulls off directly into the gameplay. Case-in-point during your character's customization, the game's skin color slider is jokingly tied to the difficulty slider, with the game claiming to be more difficult the darker your character's skin color.
"Don't worry, this doesn't affect combat. Just every other aspect of your whole life," says South Park's Eric Cartman during this moment in the game.
Our colleagues at Eurogamer first picked up on this gameplay/social commentary during a hands-on event for the game. Apparently the skin color of your character determines various aspect of the game's difficulty including how much money you receive as well as how other characters treat you.
Skin color isn't the only thing the game chooses to implement into its gameplay. Choosing your character's gender also changes parts of the game. Fractured but Whole now offers three options: male, female, and other. Previously in A Stick of Truth, only the male option was available.
Additionally, if you choose the girl option, South Park's Mr. Mackey asks you to clarify allowing players to identify as either cisgender or transgender. Depending on your responses, Mr. Mackey can retcon the events of the previous game which at the time only offered one gender option.
You can check out how both of these choices function in Eurogamer's video preview of South Park: The Fractured but Whole.
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