Controversial ‘Active Shooter’ video game taken down from streaming site

Valve facing backlash over school shooting game on Steam

Earlier this year, Gizmodo reported that the U.S. Army and Homeland Security Department had developed a simulation game meant to help teachers prepare for an active shooter situation.

During the game, players are given statistics such as a "body count" in which they can see how many civilians they killed as the school shooter.

"We have removed the developer Revived Games and publisher ACID from Steam", a Valve representative told Motherboard.

As of now, Active Shooter remains on Steam's game storefront.

The broader conversation about Steam's content policies is one that we'll be addressing soon.
The shooting in Parkland was the deadliest, followed by one at Santa Fe High School in Texas that killed 10 people. Active Shooter is set to release on June 6. The game also allows players to experience the same scenario from the perspective of a S.W.A.T. team member, in pursuit of the shooter, or as a civilian, simply trying to stay alive.

But it asks users not to take it seriously, and to call a psychiatrist or 911 if they feel like hurting someone.

"The choice is yours!" said Russian development company ACID in the game's description. Although the game attracted mostly negative reviews and an adults-only rating from the Entertainment Software Rating Board, it was a top seller on Steam on its release day.

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A game developer said it would pull the planned "Active Shooter" video game after backlash.

A petition has been launched on Change.org to have the game banned and, so far, it's attracted more than 34,000 signatures.

Ryan Petty lost his 14-year-old daughter in the February shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

"This is inexcusable. Any company that develops a game like this in wake of such a horrific tragedy should be ashamed of itself", he tweeted. That's not an easy thing to say considering what they usually have to offer, but there are just some games that really don't seem to carry the right message or offer any comfort in playing.

Responding to the criticism, Acid wrote in a blog post that the game "does not promote any sort of violence, especially any sort of a mass shooting".

The online game unfolds from the point of view of an attacker, aiming a weapon down a school corridor or throwing a grenade into an auditorium. "There are games like Hatred, Postal, Carmageddon and etc., which are even worst compared to Active Shooter and literally focuses on mass shootings/killings of people". That's a lot of games, so it's expected that some amount of controversial titles will eventually get flagged by Valve in time.

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