It was bound to happen sooner or later, and to be honest I’m surprised it didn’t happen sooner: The Bolivian government has filed a formal complaint with the French embassy over Ghost Recon Wildlands, the third-person shooter set in a fictionalized, near-future version of the country that’s fallen under the control of the Santa Blanca drug cartel.
According to a Reuters report, Bolivia has called on the French government to “intervene,” and said it reserves the right to take legal action on its own if it doesn’t receive a satisfactory response.
“We have the standing to [take legal action], but at first we prefer to go the route of diplomatic negotiation,” Bolivian interior minister Carlos Romero said.
What exactly the Bolivian government expects France to do about the situation really isn’t clear, especially with the release just a few weeks away. The French embassy in Bolivia didn’t comment on the complaint, but Ubisoft issued a statement explaining why Bolivia was chosen for the game, and emphasizing that its representation is entirely fictional.
“Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands is a work of fiction, similar to movies or TV shows. Like all Tom Clancy’s games from Ubisoft, the game takes place in a modern universe inspired by reality, but the characters, locations and stories are all fantasies created solely for entertainment purposes,” it said. “Bolivia was chosen as the background of this game based on its magnificent landscapes and rich culture. While the game’s premise imagines a different reality than the one that exists in Bolivia today, we do hope that the in-game world comes close to representing the country’s beautiful topography, and that players enjoy exploring the diverse and open landscapes it moved us to create.”
Despite the implied threat of legal action, I don’t think it’s very likely to happen. But I wouldn’t be surprised to see a greater emphasis on the “work of fiction” angle in future trailers and ads.