17 votes

Valve: Rape Day will not be released on Steam

37 comments

  1. [7]
    moocow1452 Link
    Disclaimer up front that this game should have never been in the Steam Catalog in a just world, but it's kinda weird that Valve's official content curation position is "Yes, we will sell it unless...

    Disclaimer up front that this game should have never been in the Steam Catalog in a just world, but it's kinda weird that Valve's official content curation position is "Yes, we will sell it unless it causes a media firestorm, because that's really your own fault, bub."

    20 votes
    1. [5]
      Wes Link Parent
      I hadn't even heard of it until Valve pushed a notice to my Steam window. It can't have been that big of a firestorm.

      I hadn't even heard of it until Valve pushed a notice to my Steam window. It can't have been that big of a firestorm.

      4 votes
      1. [4]
        Deimos Link Parent
        It probably depends on how much you follow gaming media. I follow a lot of gaming sites' RSS feeds and they've certainly all been writing about it and the articles have seemed to get quite a bit...

        It probably depends on how much you follow gaming media. I follow a lot of gaming sites' RSS feeds and they've certainly all been writing about it and the articles have seemed to get quite a bit of attention (and huge arguments in the comments on all of them, of course):

        8 votes
        1. Wes Link Parent
          I mostly just follow /r/games and ~games. I did see an article on both sites, but not until after Valve's announcement post. Guess I may just be out of the loop. Thanks for providing some sources.

          It probably depends on how much you follow gaming media.

          I mostly just follow /r/games and ~games. I did see an article on both sites, but not until after Valve's announcement post. Guess I may just be out of the loop.

          Thanks for providing some sources.

          4 votes
        2. [2]
          Randomacts Link Parent
          One of the comments over on polygon stated my feelings pretty well. "Having said that Hatred showed that the best way to deal with this kind of shit game is to just let it come out and ignore it."...

          One of the comments over on polygon stated my feelings pretty well.

          "Having said that Hatred showed that the best way to deal with this kind of shit game is to just let it come out and ignore it."

          Well whatever happens I hope that Valve is clear about what they are allowing and not allowing on the platform.

          1. cwagner Link Parent
            Ah, Hatred! All the hype and controversy before it released. Utter silence after release.

            Ah, Hatred! All the hype and controversy before it released. Utter silence after release.

            3 votes
    2. base_class Link Parent
      I kind of liked their official statement, it was pretty honest. Instead of giving us some BS about how valve is all about doing the right thing, they just went ahead and said we have to wait and...

      I kind of liked their official statement, it was pretty honest. Instead of giving us some BS about how valve is all about doing the right thing, they just went ahead and said we have to wait and see if it's going to do us any financial damage or not. If it does, we will then say that it does not meet our policies and pull it.

      4 votes
  2. [28]
    dubteedub Link
    I had seen a number of articles over the last week or so saying that this game was going to test Valve's Laissez-Faire attitude to its platform and I am really happy to see they went with this...

    I had seen a number of articles over the last week or so saying that this game was going to test Valve's Laissez-Faire attitude to its platform and I am really happy to see they went with this route.

    You can view the Steam statement here - Rape Day will not ship on Steam

    Looking through the comments on the Steam post is pretty insane. The amount of people arguing that Steam should include a game whose sole focus is on raping people and being purposefully offensive is mind-boggling and shows just how widespread the belief in "free speech" on the internet has proliferated.

    9 votes
    1. [11]
      Deimos Link Parent
      You'd think platforms would start seeing this coming eventually. Platform: "Deciding what to ban is subjective and we don't want to be responsible for that, so we'll allow everything that's legal....

      You'd think platforms would start seeing this coming eventually.

      Platform: "Deciding what to ban is subjective and we don't want to be responsible for that, so we'll allow everything that's legal. We don't want to censor anything."

      Someone: "Awesome, now I can do this thing that's incredibly offensive/malicious but not illegal!"

      Platform: "What? No! We've made a subjective decision not to allow that."

      It happens every single time.

      23 votes
      1. [10]
        Randomacts Link Parent
        It also is always for the easy to pick on things as well from weeb shit on reddit and other platforms to sex in general in western media like this rape game. It is important to note that the other...

        It also is always for the easy to pick on things as well from weeb shit on reddit and other platforms to sex in general in western media like this rape game.

        It is important to note that the other topic that comes often on ones like this is this 'not being censorship because it is a private company'. Valve is obviously well within their right to refuse any game but that is still censorship just legal censorship and we can still give them shit for it.

        4 votes
        1. [9]
          alyaza Link Parent
          i mean you can, but invariably it looks kinda dumb and saying it's "censorship" is only technically true insofar as yes, you can sorta kinda consider it censorship--but only if you consider...

          Valve is obviously well within their right to refuse any game but that is still censorship just legal censorship and we can still give them shit for it.

          i mean you can, but invariably it looks kinda dumb and saying it's "censorship" is only technically true insofar as yes, you can sorta kinda consider it censorship--but only if you consider literally anything that abridges free exercise of speech and expression as censorship regardless of the merit of that supposed censorship, which is pretty radical and also pits you against just about everything up to and including things like the free market (which in this case influenced valve to not release the game)

          13 votes
          1. [8]
            Randomacts Link Parent
            We can give private company shit for censoring ect even if they are well within their legal right to do so. I wouldn't even personally have a problem if valve decided that they would man up and...

            We can give private company shit for censoring ect even if they are well within their legal right to do so. I wouldn't even personally have a problem if valve decided that they would man up and hire a bunch of people to clean up the platform with proper guidelines but they aren't doing that.

            Valve themselves stated that they would allow anything legal on the platform after the recent change but that is obviously not the case and that is why I'm calling this censorship in case I wasn't clear in my rambling.

            3 votes
            1. [7]
              alyaza Link Parent
              well, that's not really censorship in the traditional sense either though, is it? that's really just the pressure of the free market pushing companies like valve into reflecting consumer...

              Valve themselves stated that they would allow anything legal on the platform after the recent change but that is obviously not the case and that is why I'm calling this censorship in case I wasn't clear in my rambling.

              well, that's not really censorship in the traditional sense either though, is it? that's really just the pressure of the free market pushing companies like valve into reflecting consumer desires--namely, into reflecting that consumers generally don't want their storefront to be a total thunderdome behind the scenes that allows any schmuck to publish games that allow people to act out literally anything that is technically "legal". which is what i mean when i say that the sort of stance you seem to be taking (intentionally or otherwise) puts you up against things like the free market.

              6 votes
              1. [6]
                Randomacts Link Parent
                cen·sorship /ˈsensərSHip/ noun noun: censorship The suppression or prohibition of any parts of books, films, news, etc. that are considered obscene, politically unacceptable, or a threat to...

                cen·sorship
                /ˈsensərSHip/
                noun
                noun: censorship

                1. The suppression or prohibition of any parts of books, films, news, etc. that are considered obscene, politically unacceptable, or a threat to security.

                Edit: I'm not actually against them censoring and the free market can push them to do so but I simply wish for strict guidelines of what is and isn't allowed.

                1. [5]
                  MimicSquid Link Parent
                  By your definition, Valve is not censoring this game. They are merely deciding to not allow it on their platform. It will be available elsewhere, per the developer.

                  By your definition, Valve is not censoring this game. They are merely deciding to not allow it on their platform. It will be available elsewhere, per the developer.

                  4 votes
                  1. [4]
                    Law Link Parent
                    Disagree, per definition they are censoring the game (prohibit = "to not allow"). That it will be available elsewhere is kinda irrelevant.

                    Disagree, per definition they are censoring the game (prohibit = "to not allow"). That it will be available elsewhere is kinda irrelevant.

                    1. [3]
                      MimicSquid Link Parent
                      Then I am currently censoring this game by failing to sell it through my bookkeeping business. They haven't asked me, but I'm definitely not allowing it.

                      Then I am currently censoring this game by failing to sell it through my bookkeeping business. They haven't asked me, but I'm definitely not allowing it.

                      7 votes
                      1. [2]
                        Law Link Parent
                        That was a weird example to give but yes in definition it´s correct.

                        That was a weird example to give but yes in definition it´s correct.

                        1. MimicSquid Link Parent
                          Right, and it's equally weird to apply it to Valve.

                          Right, and it's equally weird to apply it to Valve.

    2. [16]
      alyaza Link Parent
      i don't know that it's widespread so much as steam is just incredibly, incredibly bad at policing its platform and so the voices that might otherwise be banned pretty much never do get banned on...

      Looking through the comments on the Steam post is pretty insane. The amount of people arguing that Steam should include a game whose sole focus is on raping people and being purposefully offensive is mind-boggling and shows just how widespread the belief in "free speech" on the internet has proliferated.

      i don't know that it's widespread so much as steam is just incredibly, incredibly bad at policing its platform and so the voices that might otherwise be banned pretty much never do get banned on steam. about a year ago huffpo did a piece on how steam has a massive problem with groups like white nationalists and nazis because the moderation there is basically nonexistent on most of the website in practice.

      12 votes
      1. [15]
        Randomacts Link Parent
        A stance that I personally take and believe is reasonable is that I think valve should just stick to their word about what they allow on the platform instead of randomly picking and choosing....

        A stance that I personally take and believe is reasonable is that I think valve should just stick to their word about what they allow on the platform instead of randomly picking and choosing. While I would most likely never play this game I don't personally see anything wrong about a game focused around rape existing. Sure it is awful and whatever but so is the world and there are plenty of rape focused stuff on steam anyway from some of the eroge games they allowed on.

        3 votes
        1. [4]
          TheJorro (edited ) Link Parent
          The problem with your reasoning there is a) Valve have stuck to their word, and b) they're not randomly picking and choosing, they are picking and choosing as normal: with purpose. They say so...
          • Exemplary

          The problem with your reasoning there is a) Valve have stuck to their word, and b) they're not randomly picking and choosing, they are picking and choosing as normal: with purpose. They say so right off the bat in their response here: their only method to address things that come in through Steam Direct is reactionary.

          That's not much of a stance either, that's an accusation.

          For a): check their reference page Who Gets To Be On The Steam Store?. They referred to it with their decision, saying they don't need to explain what happened in this case further. You can see that they stuck to their word: these guys made a game centred around a heinous crime that everyone understands is an extremely sensitive subject, and proceeded to try to put in as much shock horror as possible. Read some of the developer's updates (WARNING: NSFW, extremely graphic and upsetting descriptions). This is basically trolling in some fashion, especially when they acknowledge that Steam is more than likely to kick them off the store (but he will make it available on his personal site for everyone anyways!).

          Their policy is written in plain language. It's not a law, it is not written in legalese. One is meant to understand the spirit of the policy, not hunt for the letter of it, when referring to decisions made by it. It's a policy. They're not meant to be prescriptive or comprehensive, they're meant to be a course of action.

          And, in an interesting twist on a strange situation, Hatred's ban was overridden when Valve felt they weren't meeting their policy fairly when they chose to initially ban the game. As vile as that game is, it's easy to see why it was allowed: their developers weren't daring Valve to ban them by putting in as much offensive content as possible, they had the one gimmick and stuck to it.

          Then there are the legal risks they refer to. Physical violence in video games have been through the ringer enough that there's an understanding of acceptability. Sexual violence? Not tried or tested at all, and almost certainly more likely to get Steam in trouble in many jurisdictions. It already is at risk of being banned in some countries who are heavy on the censor hand, allowing a game like this (with all its
          controversy and publicity) would see Steam getting banned in reactionary measures pretty quick.

          For b): There's a clear history of what games have had to go through this review. I don't understand how someone could so casually call it random.

          It's all about risk, ultimately. This game created a huge risk profile for itself by its nature. Earlier I made sure to mention that this game's controversy and publicity needed to be considered—if the developers never said a thing, and this game snuck into the Steam store like countless other shovelware, there's a chance that nothing would have happened As Valve says in their response here, their process is entirely automated. And the result would likely be nothing too, since nobody would know they were there.

          EDIT: Removed some inaccurate information, and the arguments that relied on them.

          11 votes
          1. [3]
            Randomacts Link Parent
            I will admit that I hadn't fully read through that post until now. And while I still think that it would have been fine to leave the game on steam if it was handled differently by all parties it...

            I will admit that I hadn't fully read through that post until now. And while I still think that it would have been fine to leave the game on steam if it was handled differently by all parties it looks like it is too late for that at this point.

            Now the payment processor bullshit is a whole other can of worms that I don't have the energy to get into nor is it on topic for this discussion.

            2 votes
            1. [2]
              TheJorro Link Parent
              I removed that anyway, it was based on inaccurate information. For some reason, I thought the developers were on a marketing blitz, but I misunderstood where the statements were coming from....

              Now the payment processor bullshit is a whole other can of worms that I don't have the energy to get into nor is it on topic for this discussion.

              I removed that anyway, it was based on inaccurate information. For some reason, I thought the developers were on a marketing blitz, but I misunderstood where the statements were coming from. However, I did find posts from the developer about the content of the game, and it turns out it goes well beyond just sexual violence.

              It got a lot clearer when I found those posts. I linked one above into one of my edits, if you want to take a look.

              2 votes
              1. Randomacts Link Parent
                Well that at least makes the dev seem slightly less awful if they didn't marketing blitz. I guess the people to blame would be journalist that wanted to convert drama to dollars not that I can...

                Well that at least makes the dev seem slightly less awful if they didn't marketing blitz. I guess the people to blame would be journalist that wanted to convert drama to dollars not that I can blame them.

                2 votes
        2. [2]
          Whom Link Parent
          There's a whole lot of people (I would imagine the majority) who would agree that Valve being consistent and transparent with what it does and doesn't allow would be a good thing. While there's...

          There's a whole lot of people (I would imagine the majority) who would agree that Valve being consistent and transparent with what it does and doesn't allow would be a good thing. While there's always going to be some level of interpretation in things like this, it's not that difficult to draw rather agreeable lines and stick to them, like a bare minimum "no hate speech" rule. What's wild to me is that in your various comments you seem to think this means Valve will get more and more ban-happy and destroy anything they can, when it's become increasingly clear that Valve wants to put the minimum amount of time and effort toward making sure this shit doesn't make it on Steam, and instead will only ever do anything at all in high profile cases like this where the opposition to the game is both incredibly loud and the reasons ridiculously clear cut. Valve isn't interested in doing anything until their arm is twisted...I assure you, there will be no slippery slope, the opposite problem is at play here.

          I'm not going to touch the validity of the game itself because that can be a whole topic of its own but I will say that "Sure it is awful and whatever" doesn't really instill much confidence that you're taking the subject seriously.

          4 votes
          1. Randomacts Link Parent
            I think that it is less likely that valve will get ban happy and more likely that valve may restrict future games as that would be easier for them to prevent possible backlash while getting most...

            I think that it is less likely that valve will get ban happy and more likely that valve may restrict future games as that would be easier for them to prevent possible backlash while getting most of the benefit. The old backlog games are quietly doing their own thing unless someone digs them up and makes a fuss about them but new games are looked over with new eyes every day just being new. Valve curating a bit more going forward would be enough to keep the payment processors and other annoyances happy.

        3. [7]
          alyaza Link Parent
          how far can you extend this justification, though? if the game was about something similarly awful like, i dunno, child porn or murdering a certain ethnicity, would your stance on it be the same?...

          While I would most likely never play this game I don't personally see anything wrong about a game focused around rape existing. Sure it is awful and whatever but so is the world and there are plenty of rape focused stuff on steam anyway from some of the eroge games they allowed on.

          how far can you extend this justification, though? if the game was about something similarly awful like, i dunno, child porn or murdering a certain ethnicity, would your stance on it be the same? because i personally don't buy that just because the world is awful or because there are similar products on steam that suddenly means steam is obligated to entertain "kike killer 2019" or "fuck a child simulator"--and in that vein i don't think such an argument can be extended to this particular game where the gimmick is basically just rape for the sake of rape.

          3 votes
          1. [6]
            Randomacts Link Parent
            'Fuck child simulator' while gross would be perfectly legal at least in some states in the US as long as it was computer rendered / animated ect. I'm not actually sure what slur the first one is...

            'Fuck child simulator' while gross would be perfectly legal at least in some states in the US as long as it was computer rendered / animated ect. I'm not actually sure what slur the first one is but I don't feel like looking it up and I'm actually fine with things such as that existing somewhere on the internet but if valve wants be perfectly clear and say they don't want X that is perfectly acceptable.

            All I ask companies is to be more clear with their guidelines otherwise we will go through the usual slippery slope of 'First they came for X but I did nothing because I wasn't X'.

            1. [5]
              Deimos Link Parent
              "Slippery slope" is literally a fallacy, you're really not supposed to use it as the core of your reasoning.

              "Slippery slope" is literally a fallacy, you're really not supposed to use it as the core of your reasoning.

              6 votes
              1. [3]
                hungariantoast Link Parent
                It's a fallacy because it's a form of catastrophizing right? Step A could theoretically lead to step B, then C, and so on, but the gap between A and Z is unrealistic?

                It's a fallacy because it's a form of catastrophizing right? Step A could theoretically lead to step B, then C, and so on, but the gap between A and Z is unrealistic?

                3 votes
                1. Whom Link Parent
                  It's not necessarily a matter of distance, but that you need to establish a reason to believe that there will continue to be movement down the slope. Moving to B means you're closer to C than you...

                  It's not necessarily a matter of distance, but that you need to establish a reason to believe that there will continue to be movement down the slope. Moving to B means you're closer to C than you were when you were on A, but that doesn't automatically mean C is on its way.

                  5 votes
                2. Deimos Link Parent
                  Yeah, that's about right. It's thinking that if you make any step in a direction you've opened the floodgates to potentially make every other, more drastic step in that direction as well, as...

                  Yeah, that's about right. It's thinking that if you make any step in a direction you've opened the floodgates to potentially make every other, more drastic step in that direction as well, as though each step isn't an individual decision and the initial one somehow made it more difficult to stop.

                  The example from here is decent:

                  We cannot unlock our child from the closet because if we do, she will want to roam the house. If we let her roam the house, she will want to roam the neighborhood. If she roams the neighborhood, she will get picked up by a stranger in a van, who will sell her in a sex slavery ring in some other country. Therefore, we should keep her locked up in the closet.

                  4 votes
              2. Randomacts Link Parent
                In a perfect world that is true but we are currently in the darkest timeline and very clear X happens that shows that things will crack down afterwards. Sometimes it seems that the most likely...

                In a perfect world that is true but we are currently in the darkest timeline and very clear X happens that shows that things will crack down afterwards. Sometimes it seems that the most likely things to happen are the least logical things to happen these days.

                We can look at many online communities or social networks such as youtube with how they took the lazy way of demonetizing and banning stuff to the point of it no longer being a reasonable career choice for people and it only looks like it is getting worse.

        4. Law Link Parent
          I don´t really like your normative reasoning at the end. Just because the world is rotten at the moment it justifies any rotten action that might occur which I find totally wicked. If we take your...

          I don´t really like your normative reasoning at the end. Just because the world is rotten at the moment it justifies any rotten action that might occur which I find totally wicked. If we take your reasoning to the extreme we should allow any vile acts since the world already is vile. Can you see the fault in that reasoning?

          1 vote
  3. [2]
    jgb Link
    To take a devil's advocate position on this: there are loads of video games about shooting or stabbing people indiscriminately. Since these are fundamentally worse crimes than rape, surely this...

    To take a devil's advocate position on this: there are loads of video games about shooting or stabbing people indiscriminately. Since these are fundamentally worse crimes than rape, surely this game is no morally worse than them?

    4 votes
    1. Law Link Parent
      It depends on, killing someone might be seen as "justified" or atleast understandable in some scenarios. Like games depicting wars, horror etc whereas rape always is a cruel/wicked action....

      It depends on, killing someone might be seen as "justified" or atleast understandable in some scenarios. Like games depicting wars, horror etc whereas rape always is a cruel/wicked action. Therefore a game depicting rape will in most cases be worse then a game about killing (since usually the "killing" games can justify their killing). But as you said the indiscriminate killing and senseless violence is probably just as ugly (only game I can think of is manhunter).
      TL;DR: Killing is understandable (not necessarily right depending on moral view) whereas rape is always absolute morally repulsive.

      10 votes