In the beta of Street Fighter V, Rainbow Mika slaps her butt during one of her special attacks. In the latest versions, that action was covered by rather awkward camera work, while certain angles were also changed in order to position Cammy’s crotch less “in your face.”
In an interview on UOL Jogos, Producer Yoshinori Ono explained the reasons behind the changes:
“Our objective with ‘Street Fighter V’ is to start over from zero”, explains Ono. “We want the professional players and the casual fans of the series to return, but we also want to reach those who have never even touched a fighting game. So we can’t have something in the game that makes people think, ‘This is not acceptable’”
Ono-san also promised that the change wasn’t influenced by external factors, but was born within the team:
“We didn’t make any change because of external influences Those changes came up internally. We decided to remove that because we want the biggest possible number of people to play, and we don’t want to have something in the game that might make someone uncomfortable.”
He then mentioned that the objective is to reduce as much as possible the instances that could offend someone.
“Probably we won’t be able to remove everything that could offend someone. But our goal is, at least, to reduce that number as much as possible so that they think ‘Ok, there is this issue here, but it is within the limits’. We want that everyone can play and enjoy without worrying about anything else.”
So there you have it, straight from the lion’s mouth.
Personally, I feel that removing a rather innocent and ironic taunt like a butt-slap from a character whose whole design is extremely sexualized from the get go, and is possibly even more exposed than she was in previous chapters of the series, makes as much sense as trying to dry up the ocean with a coffee cup, but I’m not the one making the calls.