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News doing the rounds at the moment, is that Valve seem to be tightening their rules concerning games with sexual content.

Here's developer Lupiesoft as an example, who made Mutiny!!, a visual novel with puzzle mini-games, ship combat and it even supports Linux:

We've just received some troubling news today that @steam_games has decided to pull down our titled "Mutiny!!" within 2 weeks for 'reports of pornographic content'. Now those of you who know @Lupiesoft know that we don't put that on Steam, or advertise that content on Steam.

— Lupiesoft (@Lupiesoft) May 18, 2018

The developer continued on from this tweet, to mention that their publisher even met with Valve previously and apparently they didn't have a problem then.

Here's another example from developer HuniePot, who made HuniePop which also supports Linux:

I've received an e-mail from Valve stating that HuniePop violates the rules & guidelines for pornographic content on Steam and will be removed from the store unless the game is updated to remove said content.

— HunieDev (@HuniePotDev) May 17, 2018

Honestly, I don't really get what Valve's doing. There must be some ridiculous business-type decision behind it. Perhaps they think such games are putting off some bigger publishers, as if somehow they think it makes Steam look less attractive? I do always find this odd, that content of a sexual nature is so often frowned upon, when games where you brutally murder people for 90% of the gameplay are often promoted by Valve.

Worth point out, that is a rather open store, as I understand it developers themselves set the amount they wish to give to itch out of their sales (even if it's nothing) and they even have an open source client which is due a big upgrade soon. As much as I personally like Steam (it is my favourite store), I do wish more games were available on Competition is healthy, the bigger players need it to keep them on the straight and narrow and we all know this.

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Tags: Steam, Valve
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jesta 18 May, 2018
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Quoting: LinasYou cannot with a straight face say that you can tell the difference between a cartoon depiction of a 16-year old, and a 25-year old.
Dedale 18 May, 2018
Quoting: ElectricPrismMy opinion is that yes there is content in the game that looks like the characters represent girls under the age of 18.

So what ?
1xok 18 May, 2018
Quoting: ElectricPrismMy opinion is that yes there is content in the game that looks like the characters represent girls under the age of 18.

Sorry but it's not a person. Is not a lifelike drawing. This is a lifelike drawing:

And that, in turn, is art protected by our Basic Law. At least in my country. Germany.
Linas 18 May, 2018
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My vote for the most underage looking HuniePop character would probably go to Kyu. :P
amatai 18 May, 2018
Anime character look very young, but that is because the style of drawing is curved and lack the age indicator you would expect from other drawing style. Character never looks mature, they can look old with wrinkle but they never look mature.
Kithop 18 May, 2018
My understanding is that here in Canada, simple drawings of underage characters 'designed for sexual gratification' can get you in serious trouble, potentially jail time. I think it's a pretty stupid law, but we get a lot of bleed-over from the US.

That said, this sort of thing is wholly unsurprising. I've seen it happen in other communities, and I know a few friends whose otherwise perfectly legal (i.e. definitely not underage), but otherwise suggestive or 'pornographic' art commissions get them in trouble with payment processors - PayPal is notorious for this, in particular - which puts a bit of a dent in recommending what looks to be another American company, namely, from being the saviour in this situation.

Yes, they have Stripe as an alternative payment processor, and I'm not sure what their rules are like around this stuff, but putting up an Adult VN or similar on, charging for it, and accepting PayPal for said payments? Could end up causing serious trouble. Plus, all it takes is for these puritan groups to smell blood in the water and go after them next, fresh off their 'win' against Valve.

It's a cultural problem with the US, wrapped up and enforced with legal BS. But that could describe a whole lot of only tangentially related topics that aren't fit for here. ;)

Treat the US as 'damaged' and route around it is all we can do, for now. Maybe something in Europe will work better, but who knows at this point. Too early to tell.
zimplex1 18 May, 2018
All pornographic material should be banned.
1xok 18 May, 2018
Quoting: KithopTreat the US as 'damaged' and route around it is all we can do, for now. Maybe something in Europe will work better, but who knows at this point. Too early to tell.

Recently I could also observe this here in Europe (Germany). We recently passed laws of this kind. Even though these laws are hardly directed against comic figures you can observe a certain chilling effect. Especially on this subject, a false suspicion is devastating. In the end, people renounce their basic rights.

The picture I linked above is from Balthus. Until a few years ago, art like this was exhibited normally in Germany. But for some time now, museums no longer dare. For me this is frightening in a country like Germany with its past of so-called degenerated art.

And the good Americans elect a president who treats women like cattle. But that's all right as long as you don't find pixel breast anywhere. It is indeed difficult to explain this world to young people.

Last edited by 1xok on 18 May 2018 at 10:18 pm UTC
tuubi 18 May, 2018
If Valve only bans games with children in a sexual context, I don't mind at all. You can fight all you want about technicalities and cultural differences and whatnot, but we won't actually lose anything worthwhile if they do. There must be other platforms for such "art". There's no good reason to make it easily accessible.

I'm not quite as vehemently opposed to (late) teens in similar situations, because as you might have noticed, teens do have sex and they do also play games. As long as it's not about something like rape fantasies or whatever, I'm okayish with it. I might not be the target audience, but I sure as hell once was, back in the day when we used to ride dinosaurs to school.

I don't mind (consensual) sex and nudity in general in my entertainment. The glorification of violence is much more of a problem.
Linas 18 May, 2018
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Quoting: tuubiIf Valve only bans games with children in a sexual context, I don't mind at all.

But that is not the case at all. HuniePop does not contain children in sexual context. At best it has characters that may appear to be young.

To play the devils advocate I have to say I do understand why Valve may want to stay way clear of this. There are quite a few countries, also in Europe, that have really vague and far reaching laws. Like cartoon depictions of underage characters being legally equal to actual child pornography. Some even criminalize literature. Yes, words.

But let's not pretend that there is any child pornography in HuniePop. Because there isn't.
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