Sexual assault video game that wants to 'normalise rape' featured on Steam store

Rape Day lets players 'control the choices of a menacing serial killer rapist during a zombie apocalypse'

Rape Day lets players carry out sexual assaults on female characters in the game
Rape Day lets players carry out sexual assaults on female characters in the game

A video game that encourages players to rape and murder women has provoked outrage after it was listed on a popular gaming platform.

Alongside sexually explicit images and a description warning of "violence, sexual assault, non-consensual sex, obscene language, necrophilia, and incest," Rape Day appeared on the Steam Store online gaming platform.

Desk Plant, the game's developer, claims it is a "dark comedy" that obeys the rules of Valve, the platform's owner.

Valve's developer guidelines state that it will only remove games if they break the law or are "straight up trolling".

The lax approach, detailed in a lengthy blog post last year, saw Valve become the first major platform to host porn in virtual reality.

Describing the game the developer says players can "control the choices of a menacing serial killer rapist during a zombie apocalypse".

It compares it compares to Grand Theft Auto in terms of the moral questions it raises.

"Murder has been normalised in fiction, while rape has yet to be normalised," the game's website states.

An online petition calling for the game to be banned has received more than 1,000 signatures since it launched last week.

"Rape is not a game and the makers of this should not be allowed to make money promoting the rape and killing of women," it states. "This is only going to vilify rape and violence towards women. We are trying to stop this happening worldwide and yet this 'game' is now being sold to anyone, any age, who has access to a credit card."

A similar petition by parents of school shooting victims, who objected to the inclusion of a video game billed as a "school shooting simulation" on the platform, received more than 200,000 signatures to have it removed.

Valve eventually pulled the game from the Steam Store but said it did not want to engage in debates in the future about how it polices its platform.

If the game is banned from Steam, Desk Plant said that it would look for other ways to distribute Rape Day.

"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. "However, if Steam does change their policy... I will do what I can to try and create and/or find an alternate way of selling and marketing my games."

Despite claiming that the point of the game is to allow players to experience things that they "can't or shouldn't in reality", the game's developer revealed that a baby killing scene had been removed due to public outcry.

"I am sorry to anyone whom this scene's existence caused distress," they wrote. "I am learning to find my artistic balance between producing the games I love, and not causing avalanches of outrage."

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