An official video game rating system has just recently been established by the Saudi government . It has warning symbols for violence, religious offence, alcohol use, gambling, sex, violence and online play. And unsurprisingly also includes a
Horror or violence
Smoking, alcohol, drugs or subversive ideas
Nudity, sexuality, kink or sex out of wedlock
Online games with user content that may transgress classification
The 'classifications' have so far been used for bans of Assassin's Creed II, The Last of US, and Hitman.
Destructive Creations' first game, Hatred , is now available on Steam with an adults only AO rating from the ESRB. The game is described by its creators as a mass shooting simulator, though most reviews we've read so far suggest
that - besides the death animations (which can be a little over the top in the violence department) - the game is your average run-of-the-mill run and gun game.
Whether the game deserves the rating it got from the ESRB is still up for debate because - besides the dialog of the protagonist talking about all the killing he's doing and how he apparently hates everyone - the game isn't any more violent than
a Postal game or the latest version of Grand Theft Auto.
The game also only seems to be available on Steam, with other online digital distributors like GOG.com banning it. Twitch tried to be a bit subtle about its ban by changing its policies such that games rated AO by the ESRB are banned in general.
Rather signposting that ban was more or less specific to Hatred, Twitch is fine with adults only rating from all the other world games rating organisations. Most people have turned to Twitch competitor Hitbox to stream the game as a result.
Digital download service GOG has decided not to sell Hatred. Destructive explained in a Facebook reply regarding GOG's decision, saying that the service expressed interest in distributing the game and even tested it, and said that the game is
good, but 'we can't.' That's the whole story.
Polygon , a reliably hysterical gaming rag published by Vox Media, was first out of the gate in the 'outrage' stakes, saying the game caused them genuine revulsion . And then, as night follows day, eager social justice warriors
determined to prove what virtuous people they are chipped in, setting up a petition to have the game banned. Most of these people do not play, or even really care about, video games. They just enjoy whingeing.
Once, you were a gamer because you liked playing videogames, regardless of non-issues like gender, race or sexuality. However, the politically correct see everything through the warped lens of identity politics. By Stephen Beard