The Difficulty Slider in South Park: The Fractured But Whole Changes Your Skin Color

A recent batch of gameplay for Ubisoft’s comedic RPG South Park: The Fractured But Whole has been making the rounds, mostly because of one particular mechanic now revealed in the game.

The new gameplay comes via Eurogamer, which reveals the game’s difficulty slider will literally make your skin darker as you increase the difficulty. This overrides the skin color you can select prior in the first steps of the character creator.

Once you get to the difficulty selection option, Eric Cartman adds the comment: “Don’t worry, this doesn’t affect combat. Just every other aspect of your whole life.” Considering this is a deliberately placed aesthetic, Eurogamer reached out to Ubisoft to clarify why they added the feature.

Ubisoft developers, who were not named, said the difficulty of the game affects the amount of money you’ll obtain and the way in which other characters talk to you throughout the entire game. Coming from this, it’s easy to make a connection that this feature is social commentary on modern day racism. It’s also unclear if this actually makes the game harder or not.

Another feature in the character creator is selecting your gender, and while some argue there are hundreds of genders and/or gender pronouns, Ubisoft is providing three: male, female, and other. After selecting this, Mr. Mackey will call your parents to confirm this as your final decision. The game then makes fun of its predecessor, with Mackey saying:

“So the whole King and Stick of Truth thing, she was actually a girl the entire time?” If you select female, Mackey then asks what exactly you mean as a girl, and then poses the question: are you cisgender or transgender. He then calls your parents again, adding: “It still tracks with The Stick of Truth, yes it does. She was definitely a girl the whole time. Yes of course. I get it.”

I’m assuming the cisgender and transgender options are there for the male option as well.

How do you feel about these social commentary features being added into the game? The game is based on a series that became famous for its social commentary, after all. Sound off in the comments below!

South Park: The Fractured but Whole will launch across PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One on October 17th.

Brandon Orselli


Big Papa Overlord at Niche Gamer. Italian. Dad. Outlaw fighting for a better game industry. I also write about music, food, & beer. Also an IT guy.

  • DrearierSpider

    Don’t necessarily agree with the point, but it’s a fitting joke for South Park.

  • TT

    How do i feel about the social commentary? It’s a South Park thing to do, so nothing really out of the ordinary. I imagine the PC Principal will reflect alot on it, though with all the constant talks of racism seemingly everywhere, it’s kind of a weary subject. I do trust Trey and Matt to make something funny though.

  • Pretty spicy.

  • ActivistZero

    Matt and Trey have the wit and intelligence to pull this off and make it funny, so I’ll give them a pass

  • Touma

    helps make the role playing more realistic I guess lol, I kinda wish there was an option of being Asian/Ginger and everyone bulling you for it.

  • mega jew

    That’s funny

  • Anon_Amous


  • Daryl Corey

    I am worn out on this sort of stuff so I am probably not going to get this game at launch maybe wait for a used copy down the line instead

  • Dewey Defeats Truman

    My only complaint is that putting it on the easiest difficulty doesn’t make you into a game journalist.

  • Ace

    Right on point.

  • David Curry

    I would have thought that it’s a joke from Matt and Trey, but Ubi soft just pulled this with ME:A with no satire.

  • vonSanneck

    EA. but I see why they would be mixed up.

  • vonSanneck

    Let them actually be edgy. Can respect Ubisoft on that. But I can see Denuvo be added to this a mile away. That and uPlay being shit.

  • Mr0303

    My guess is that this is an awesome troll by the South Park guys. It’s offensive enough to trigger SJWs, but it is also making light of something they really believe in so they can’t really complain. Bravo.

  • TheOnceAndFutureKing

    lol, first time I laughed at a South Park joke in nearly a decade

  • CRES

    I think this is biting satire that will no doubt be taken seriously by the people they are trying to satirize.


    I hope people will lose their shit. I embrace idiots. They entertain me.

  • AnarKreig

    The joke is that the difficulty doesn’t change the game at all.

  • sanic

    its ubisoft San Francisco so I’m leaning towards ham fisted soia commentary over humor…


    I see some irony here. Being black indicates you are living the hardest life.


  • Mechonis

    This is funny?

  • Travis Touchdown

    Changing this would be censorship.;)

  • Tarrasque

    Can be taken both ways. I’ll ignore it.

  • Kakaku

    You have a good sight. This is confirmed to be using Deuvo.

  • FreshSnug

    At this point I’m so sick of people whining about racism that I prefer racists over the people complaining about them.

  • Zen

    That’s what I’m hoping the case is. Not that I have a particular stance on the real-world subject of the joke, but I think this would be the funniest outcome.

  • Shattno

    Haha! Now I have to pick up this game.

  • Squirrel on crack cocaine.

    South Park…….never change what you do, please.

  • lucben999

    Oh God, how are Polygon and Kotaco going to deal with this? the only way to play easy mode is to be white!

  • alterku

    Spoiler: Choose very hard and write a letter to the bad guys that says black lives matter ten dozen times and you automatically win the game.

  • alterku

    I’ll assume you’re talking about the alleged racists, not the racists alleging racism.

  • MusouTensei
  • 2501


  • grgspunk


  • ProxyDoug

    OMG would’ve been perfect.

  • Anon630

    You’d figure Ubi would be flipping their shit after what happened with Assassins Creed Origins steam forums.

  • FreshSnug

    Both. The alleged racists and actual racists are far more pleasant to deal with than the ones preaching about it.

  • GuyGuysonEsquire

    The joke would be correct if the slider was the other way around.

  • Envy-Noson

    Well, at least I’ll get hard and not vary hard.

  • ScarredBushido

    i lost my shit when i saw this hahaahah