Mr. Game & Watch first emerged in the 1982 game Fire Attack, which saw a Civil War general defend a fort from Native Americans. The character was present in a recent promo video for Smash Bros. that caused many people to criticize the company:
Please check and spread the below thread from ResetEra. Mr. Game & Watch's new forward smash in Smash Ultimate is a direct reference to a G&W game featuring racist depictions of Native Americans.— ✨ gale (@rr_gale) November 3, 2018
I'm Native, and this hurts. @NintendoAmerica Can you help?https://t.co/8JlXbBh1lf pic.twitter.com/NZCasWlVom
Nintendo previously edited out the attacker's feather and loincloth when it re-released Fire Attack in 2002, and now the company says it plans to do the same for the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
"Nintendo has been planning to distribute an update for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate that removes the feather from the silhouette of Mr. Game & Watch," the company told Eurogamer. "The original game on which this depiction of the character is based was released more than three decades ago and does not represent our company values today.
"We sincerely apologise that this change was not noticed in our marketing material and are continuing our work to make Super Smash Bros. Ultimate an experience that is both welcoming and fun for everyone."
In the North American promotional materials for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Mr. Game & Watch had already appeared without an offensive outfit, but the feather and loincloth were depicted in a Japanese ad for the game.