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Update: Valve has reinstated Hatred’s Greenlight page. Today, Destructive Creations posted their game “Hatred” to the Steam Greenlight service to see if the community would be interested in purchasing it. Hours later it was taken down for reasons unspecified by Valve.

Hatred was announced on October 16th with its first gameplay trailer posted online. The trailer for Hatred showed a man stuffing a number of weapons in a trench coat before going on a violent killing spree in the town. Violence in the world of video games is nothing new, even on the Steam store. From the early days of Wolfenstein 3D and Doom, to more modern games like Call of Duty and Hotline Miami, the mass murder of virtual human life is fairly commonplace.

So one is left to wonder why Valve has started banning games from sale now? Besides the above mentioned titles, Steam still sells plenty of more mature games through their service. Grand Theft Auto V is still listed as an upcoming title (despite Target and Kmart Australia removing it from sale.) You can still buy all three games in the Postal franchise on Steam (Full Disclosure: I received Postal 2 for free from the developers though #OpGameItForward.) Beyond just the violent side of adult content, Steam even offers Everlasting Summer free to download, despite being an M rated Eroge title.

Though it should also be stated that what Valve is doing is not illegal as The First Amendment only extends to laws made by the United States government. While it is debatable that what Valve is doing is wrong, there is nothing the law can do to stop them. Gamers who wish to play the game will have to purchase it from Good Old Games or Desura instead, assuming that those services don’t refuse to sell the game as well. Though even selling Hatred through Paypal on the Destructive Creations website isn’t necessarily a guaranteed option. Paypal has, in the past, banned and withheld money from users for selling adult products through their service.

And speaking of money, it says clear on the Greenlight submission page that “abuse of Steam Greenlight will forfeit your Submission fee and result in a ban from Steam Community Services.” So it looks like the developers at Destructive Creations won’t be getting their money back from Valve.

Update with a response from the team at Destructive Creations:

Dear Hatred fans,

As you know today we’ve launched our Steam Greenlight campaign for Hatred. Unfortunately after couple of hours Steam shut it down giving the below as reasons behind their decision:

 

“We wanted you guys to know that based on what we see on Greenlight we would not publish Hatred on Steam. As such we’ll be taking it down.”

 

Even though games like Manhunt or Postal are still available on Steam we of course fully respect Valve’s decision, as they have right to do so. In the same time we want to assure you that this won’t in any way impact the game development, game’s vision or gameplay features we’re aiming for. The game is still to be released in Q2 2015 as planned.

Moreover we don’t treat this as a failure because yet again this showed us a huge community support we’re totally overwhelmed with. After only a couple of hours Greenlight campaign being live, Hatred gathered 13,148 up votes and ended up on a #7 on top 100 list. This is the best proof for us that there are diehard Hatred fans out there waiting for this game to be released. And that we need to keep going to deliver them a game that offers exciting and challenging gameplay.

The whole situation only pushes us forward to go against any adversity and not to give up. It also makes us want to provide our fans Hatred pre-orders sooner, as many of you have asked for them.

Destructive Creations Team


Dan Worcester

Been playing games for over half my life. I like to think that I have a wide variety of tastes in genres, while still being mindful of quality.



  • JackDandy

    This is beyond idiotic. What the fuck, Gabe?

  • Raiiban

    What makes this violence any different from other games violence? Why is this one bad enough to be banned?

  • ArsCortica

    Manhunt? Check. Postal 1/2? Check. GTA titles? Check.

    Something tells me Steam just shot itself in the foot. With a rocket launcher.

  • jlnod15

    Woot for double standards

  • Reptile

    Funny that, there are a plenty of shit early access that 1) Barelly start 2)Developers abandoned the game 3) Both. Or greenlight games that can only be a joke, shit that I would do better with no knowledge of game development, or even “Rock Simulators”, that not counting games that lack features because GFWL is not a thing anymore (if ever was) and games that don’t work on newer platforms past windows XP.

    Come on Gabe…

  • Alex

    The shit storm is so big not even Gabe can handle it :O

  • Fenrir007

    Absolute bullshit from Valve – one that I definitely did not expect from them, especially considering some of the games they have on their store. Not only that, but they refuse to act on early access scammers like Tim Schaffer and vote manipulators on greenlight. Totally within Valve’s rights to refuse to carry this game, but this doesn’t stop it from being a moronic decision.

    Since I know he actually reads his e-mails, I will send an e-mail to Gabe later.

    Also, if you are a steam user, go to the forums and tell them what you think about this. There are several threads popping up in the “Discussion” section of the steam community forums.

    Edit: just sent the Hatred devs my e-mail of support.

    Support the petition to get it back on Steam:

    https://www.change.org/p/gabe-newell-bring-back-game-hatred-to-steam-greenlight-service?utm_campaign=responsive_friend_inviter_chat&utm_medium=facebook&utm_source=share_petition

  • Inquisitor Malakai

    I’ll be buying my games from GOG.com from now on.

  • AgentBJ09

    Makes me glad my Steam account has been left unused for two years; I’d be refusing to play on that service at this news.

    I’ll wait for this game to be self-published and stick to GOG otherwise.

  • Tech Stegosaurus

    I find the very idea that something should be censored for being offensive deeply troubling.

    Think how many important and fundamentally right things were controversial when they were proposed. The abolition of slavery was controversial.

    I obviously don’t think Hatred is comparable to the abolition of slavery; I don’t even think it has a good message. But rather, I think that if we say it’s a good idea to prevent controversial things we’re going to prevent a lot of important and good things too.

  • DeathBattleFan123

    Let this be a lesson to anyone so eager to give a single company, even a seemingly benevolent one, so much power that they can effectively censor an entire medium unilaterally.

  • DeathBattleFan123

    Hatred has an excellent message. It strips all meaning from the virtual violence and forces the player to decide in no uncertain terms whether they can enjoy such an experience or not. Rarely is such brutal honesty thrust upon the audience.

  • Tech Stegosaurus

    You might have a point there. I haven’t been paying too much attention to Hatered because I know it’s never going to be for me.

    Maybe that’s evidence supporting your point.

  • AgentBJ09

    True that. Valve having so much distribution control, beyond Steam being the single biggest gaming client today, can easily become dangerous for PC gaming.

  • Megamatics

    This is a bad move on steam… the game honestly looks amazing graphically and fun as well. I will definitely play this game and tell people about it, I love Twin Stick Shooters.

  • Doc Hammer

    Alright, so Valve being totally mum on this is far and away the most unacceptable part of it. Has the game industry not yet been made aware that they will be held accountable to their consumers?

  • Guest

    And rocketjumping is off.

  • Here’s the Greenlight dashboard for Hatred, as posted earlier by one of the devs: https://i.imgur.com/NPvPvEh.jpg

    Apparently the game itself is a TOS violation. Still waiting to hear from Doug Lombardi as to why that is.

  • Fenrir007

    Apparently being an edgelord is a federal offense

  • GuitarAnthony

    It’s disappointing Valve feels the need to be the censor for us. Maybe it never would have made it past Greenlight. In the end it’s moot because they’ll just sell it directly or on one of the gamesites like GOG.

  • PossiblyCthulhu

    Streisand effect incoming….
    It does make me wonder when games like Hotline Miami which whilst not game violence for the sake of it (like Hatred) is still pretty extreme are allowed on Steam, Hatred breaks TOS after going on Greenlight

  • AnarKreig

    This is making me question if I made the right vote for EA worst company of the year; maybe it should have been Valve this time.

  • DG

    There’s nothing more about Hatred than a trailer and speculation. Period. This is completely unacceptable by Valve.

  • SirBittle

    What the hell, Valve? I’d like to hear an actual explanation as to what is going on. From what I saw from the Hatred guys, they were getting mostly positive reception for the Greenlight.

  • Brad Sherard

    Gunna wait until evidence shows this to be content based censorship issue before I join the hate train.

    If it is, a very powerful protest would be to not participate in the steam sales this winter. How many of you have the conviction to put your standards where your wallet is and give up steam? If it turns out that valve is censoring content, would you be willing to do something about it? Would you stop giving them your money?

  • This is the million dollar question.

  • 33

    Down with this sort of thing.

  • Jess

    Extremely disappointed in Valve.

    Well, time for me to bitch really loudly about something I personally dislike until they remove it in the interests of fairness!

  • Invin

    This is fricking ridiculous. I’m sick of the morality police deciding what entertainment other adults can and can’t buy.

  • Mark Andrew Edwards

    Interesting perspective.

    I wouldn’t buy Hatred for just that reason. Though…I have my doubts the developer had any ideas so lofty.

  • Valandui

    All the more reason to migrate to GOG for good. DRM free is definitely the way to go.

  • hots

    Chill out amigo. You make it sound like the end of video games, rather than a Valve employee thinking that a game violated Valve’s Terms of Service. Besides, its a single outlying example none of us had heard of before.

  • hots

    Like I care. Steam can sell what it wants, if I want a game that’s not on steam I’ll get it elsewhere. How damn hard is that?
    Does typing in the name of a different online store cause you to break a sweat?

  • Farwin

    It really bothers me how many people equate Steam with PC gaming.

    -PC Master Race pre-2003

  • Kol Khara

    Maybe that is why they removed it? It’s not the first game with nothing to show for it that was removed from Greenlight and probably won’t be the last.

  • DG

    Well, it DID show gameplay, unlike grass simulator etc

  • Ben Jeanotte

    Wow, joining the ranks of K-mart and Target? I mean come on. They’ll have pornographic games on steam, but not violent ones? Hell, the core of most video games is violence! If it offends people, they just don’t have to buy it. It’s not even taking up space on a store-shelf! Not being able to sell your pc game on steam? That’s just a death sentence, that’s not right.

  • noxteryn

    There is something we can do: Send emails to Steam.

  • Doc Hammer

    What part of the steam TOS did it violate? And rank 7 in like 3 hours? This won’t piss anybody off. Nope.

  • King of Zeroes

    Yeah. The whole “quality control is important to us” line made me vomit in my mouth a little considering some of the scams and unfinished garbage they willingly sell to us through their Early Access shit.

    Don’t fucking kid yourselves. There’s no “quality control” on Steam, and if there is, then GET TO FUCKING WORK YOU CUNTS.

    You want to justify pulling Hatred? You get to clean up your WHOLE goddamn service.

    Good bloody luck.

  • GDI

    As long as Windows, Linux, and Android remain open ecosystems (i.e. will run un-verified executables) there will always be an “underground” where discriminated developers can still release their creations.

    On the other hand, what a way to promote something by banning it. As if Prohibition didn’t make people learn their lessons.

  • ZURATAMA1324

    Isn’t Steam suppose to be a ‘One 4 All’ service for all gamers like Gabe planned it to be?
    WTF Valve, I still like you but if you pull this shit again, I’m leaving.

    -10 Consumer Loyalty.

  • Chino Gambino

    Valve are being complete idiots, this does not really break their TOS. Plenty of the games they have contain similar content, they sell the Postal games which Hatred is a homage to. They said they no longer wanted to curate steam, thus greenlight and popular community curators. By doing this they are rewarding fear mongering special interest groups(and clickbaiting journalists) who are not even customers, violating the reason Greenlight exists and making themselves accountable to irrelevant outsiders. Its so needless, they ignored over 7000 customers for what? Something that would have come and gone in a month. Now other devs maybe spooked and self censor to ensure admission on steam and the activists won’t be happy with Hatred being banned, just emboldened to demand more. Its a lose lose.

  • Arbitrary

    Cowards.

  • Fenrir007

    Even more funny is how Steam not only lets a game like Motor Rock on greenlight AND puts it on the store even though it is a carbon copy of Rock and Roll Racing. Sure, they removed it after Blizzard asked, but that shouldn’t even have been greenlit in the first place, since it actually breached the ToS on the copyright department (and I doubt no one at Valve knew the very famous Rock and Roll Racing game).

  • Mr. Greis

    Then Valve should remove Depression Quest. I mean, if it’s about quality control…

  • Be wary of this one, guys. Send the mails if you must but there’s too much here that makes me think manufactured outrage. Why was Kuchera endlessly complaining and spilling ink over this? Was he really that much more trolled by it than GTA or Hitman? Is that really down to just the ‘tone?’ If so, why does it demand 4 articles so near together complaining about the same thing? Not saying I think Hatred devs are in on this, or that you shouldn’t send mails/sign the petition, but something stinks about the whole situation, People angry about GTA always found NEW things to complain about, not just shooting hookers each time. What is Ben’s angle on this? Distraction? Investment in some part of Valve or on someone invested in it’s behalf? Is he trying to get Destructive blackballed from future game releases due to controversy? And what are Doug’s real thoughts on this matter? Is it just trying to get other publications to mimick their angry coverage? Keep in mind how soon this blew up after the GTA bans and the Canadian petition…

    This reminds me a lot of the Moral Majority outcries that ignored specific publications/locations for either smaller (can hit them and ruin them with obscenity charges easier) or larger, ‘softer’ targets (trying to get Playboy to bribe them to go away).
    There’s too much focus on Hatred for some odd reason, some which just doesn’t feel genuine to me. If there isn’t another angle at work here, I’m going to be very surprised.
    I know we have a lot of oddball conspiracies floating around, but having seen Moral Majority go after a sex toy shop when it’s only a few doors away from a Vivid shooting location, a lot of this doesn’t feel like a natural progression to me. Perhaps we are about to see a Boiled Angel situation like Mike Diana faced in Florida.

  • I feel sorry for America’s jails, they’re about to be flooded with Shadow fans.

  • Yeah, that’s why I felt there is a different angle at work here. Someone has to have realised how this would blow up with GG still going. I wonder if GoG would take them in the meanwhile until this is sorted out.

  • You and me both, brudder. It’s looking more and more like the PC Gaming I used to know only exists on shitty flash hub sites now!

  • I’m still disappointed that one is gone. At least it FELT like a game. Thank you Kim Dot Com at least, I guess! They need to just send those guys a check for $50k, rebrand it, and port it onto Battle.net

  • It is very worrysome and sets a bad precedent, very bad.

    Reason why it’s not on steam is not because of the content, but rather because of the immense protests against it by concervative mothers and “progressive” left radicals who think censoring and removing anything they dislike or disagree with is the right way to go about things, rather than simply not buying it for themselves or their kids.

    Gonna make me reconsider buying stuff from Steam for a while.

  • jonas nielsen

    Valve is destroying pc gaming. I’ve been saying this right from the start

    Why on earth anyone would support renting their games in a walled garden like that is completely beyond me. Are people really that greedy that saving a few bucks will make them abandon all their principles?

    Stop supporting this shitty company, pirate anything on steam (but buy it there to support the devs) and support proper companies like GOG.com

    Fat Gaben is just a greedy fuck. People who thinks he is on the gamers side are delusional. He is just in it to grab as much money as possible

  • jonas nielsen

    Absolutely

    The only time i buy anything on steam is when i really want a specific game which is not available anywhere else. After buying it i’ll promptly pirate it so i don’t have to install the shitty steam client which is borderline malware in my opinion

  • Fenrir007

  • Fenrir007

    Oh, I also loved it. I bought it quickly because I knew it wouldn’t last there. I knew Blizzard would lawyer up as soon as they heard that shit was on steam. Just mentioning it as an example of their double standards.

  • Reptile

    Wait what? There is pornographic games on steam and I didn’t knew it? How? When? Who? How Much?

  • Reptile

    I’m still waiting to see what is the reason behind the “TOS break”, maybe it can be related to something legal, like software license or they failed to show some documents, etc etc.

  • destroy_all_monsters

    I’d rather buy it from GOG anyway. They need less indies and more new core gaming titles.

    The good thing about this is that it challenges Steam’s stranglehold on the industry.

  • Ten Penny

    Censorship censorship. Pretty disgusting.

  • destroy_all_monsters

    Don’t forget that it has been primarily eastern european devs that lived under communist rule that are some of the loudest voices that are against sjws and for GamerGate.

    There is a reason for that.

    For all the people that take issue with this and yet consider Syndicate a masterpiece you are all hypocrites. There is no difference.

  • DeathBattleFan123

    I’m not making it sound like “the end of video games”, and I don’t understand how you interpreted that meaning.

    I’m calling it exactly what it is: The world’s largest and most influential digital distributor of PC games decided, for entirely moral reasons, to ban a popular game… and nobody can do anything about it.

  • Zanard Bell

    And now my monopoly sensors are tingling. Bad form, Steam.

  • Ben Jeanotte

    Leisure suit Larry, and a few otaku anime-style dirty romance games.

  • Reptile

    Oh “pornographic” I see, well, that is “erotic” at best.
    Pornographic games would be like games made by Illusion and etc.
    But I fail to see why “pornographic can’t but violent can” or “violent can’t but pornographic can’t”. Both are niche specific genres that doesn’t appeal to everybody, people should have the option to buy either violent games or pervert games or anything they want, who am I to care anyway?

  • Duce Ralli

    Umm everyone realizes that Gabe himself got Hatred back up right?