Valve Blocks Release Of Explicit Sexual Assault Game On Steam

Polygon

Polygon

The game also allows players to "verbally harass, kill people and rape women as you choose to progress the story". That makes getting featured on a platform like Steam important, and it turns out there's an easy way for developers to cheat the system so their games appear on Steam's "Popular Upcoming" list.

The statement went on to say that the game's chosen content matter made it hard for Valve to keep it on the store.

The game had been set for release in April. Like other games with sexual content, "Rape Day" was hidden from Steam's usual search results, but searching the exact title, or the word rape alone, would allow users to see and access the game's Steam listing.

The full statement relates back to Valve's decision a year ago to stop policing what should be on Steam.

Valve has no specific policy which disallows games that glorify or encourage players to commit acts of sexual violence, only barring "content that violates the laws of any jurisdiction in which it will be available" and "content that exploits children in any way". It's for a niche audience; If it's not your type of game you definitely don't need to play it but as other's have said I tried to make a game that I would enjoy playing, and there are other people like me. Debbie Tohill, the group's executive director, said, "Making a game out of rape is never okay - it's outrageous, and it totally negates the impact that sexual violence has on its victims".

Rape Day's Steam page before its removal featured some disturbing, graphic images.

Izzy Sims
Izzy Sims English student ✓ Games Editor ✓ eGirl

"I have not broken any rules, so I don't see how my game could get banned unless Steam changes their policies", the developer said.

Read Steam's full statement on "Rape Day" below.

While Steam is specifically targeted in these comments, Robinson adds that "I am delighted that Steam has rejected the distribution of this incredibly shocking game on their online platform".

For the most part, Valve says anything that isn't "illegal or straight up trolling", is given the greenlight, but notes in yesterday's statement that their policy surrounding similar content to Rape Day should be "reactionary". Johnson brought up the company's stance outlined in "Who Gets To Be On The Steam Store?".

Steam shared its decision on Rape Day in a blog post Wednesday, saying the move comes "after significant fact-finding and discussion". We then have to make a judgement call about any risk it puts to Valve, our developer partners, or our customers. It still seems like the company could do a better job of preventing these situations from occurring, but they find themselves in a tough situation as their mission to enable developers to express themselves freely can lead to extremely offensive situations for customers and the broader public.

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