However Assassin's Creed 4 isn't exploring today's society, it's diving into the past and the past had whaling - a lot of it. PETA is no stranger to targeting video games to remind us they're crazy.
Super Meat Boy was famously lampooned, with the game's creators adding a tongue-in-cheekin response. It should be noted that PETA is no friend of mankind.
The organization has notoriously militant links and has on occasion quietly supported extreme tactics such as firebombing medical research institutes. The groups manifesto calls for the 'liberation of all animals' around the globe - that's all animals, everywhere. It doesn't take a genius to realise how... bad that would turn out. PETA is not our friend.
"Whaling – that is, shooting whales with harpoons and leaving them to struggle for an hour or more before they die or are hacked apart while they are still alive – may seem like something out of the history books, but this bloody industry still goes on today in the face of international condemnation, and it’s disgraceful for any game to glorify it," said PETA.
“PETA encourages video game companies to create games that celebrate animals – not games that promote hurting and killing them.” Whaling is a tragic industry that continues today and should be condemned given that no scientific research is really advanced by it, despite what the Japanese government would claim.
Ubisoft will hardly be 'celebrating' the act of whaling in Assassin's Creed 4 but they have included it as part of the pirating life in the 1700's. In the end, the virtual activity would most likely prove optional. Will Ubisoft withdraw it?
Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag releases on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC October 29th, and on PS4 later.