Media Outlets Lie About Survival Island 3; Game Gets Pulled From iTunes, Google
Survival Island 3

Various media outlets and journalists have lied about the content in Survival Island 3, a mobile game designed by Russian developer Kristina Fedenkova from GF Studio (also known as GF Team). They’re parroting a story and advocating censorship based on a petition containing misinformation about a survival title that’s a sequel to Survival Island 2: Dinosaur Hunter.

At the time of the writing of this article, Survival Island 3: Australia Story 3D has been pulled from the iTunes app store and Google Play.

Kotaku in Action spotted a petition on signed by 42,000 people asking for Survival Island 3 to be censored and pulled off the web for mobile devices. The petition states…

“The game shamelessly promotes the fact that you will “have to fight with aboriginals” and uses warning messages like, “Beware of Aborigines!” when Indigenous people appear on screen. The game portrays Indigenous Australian’s as violent and aggressive. As well as trying to promote the Indigenous characters as authentic representations of a diverse culture through the description phrasing, “Meet real aboriginals”.

The “Beware of Aborigines!” line is from the app store page, along with the “New Weapon” line, both of which are used on the promotional screenshots but don’t actually appear in the game. In fact when you craft a weapon it’s simply added to your inventory, as evidenced in a video of Survival Island 2 (which is identical to Survival Island 3 save for the name and location). It does not say “New Weapon”.

As you can see in the clip below, the Aboriginal NPCs are standard NPCs and can either be friendly or hostile depending on the player’s actions but it doesn’t say “Beware of Aborigines” when they’re on screen. This is also evidenced in a video from Andrei Plugaru, where no warning messages pop up when the Aborigines appear.

Video game app under fire for ‘Aborigine killing’ quest

TBCA A petition has been launched to ban a game app that involves a player beating to death an “Aborigine” in a quest to survive in the Australian outback. Survival Island 3 – Australia Story 3D was released last month and costs $4.49 in the Apple iTunes store.

Even still, the media picked up on the petition – no different than what they did with the GTA V petition that resulted in the game getting removed from Target and Kmart in Australia – and they’ve been reporting that the game is about killing indigenous tribes in Australia.

On January 15th, 2015 New Matilda‘s [backup] Chris Graham wrote…

“Just when you think humanity couldn’t get anymore offensive… a newly released app on the Apple iTunes stores – rated for children aged 12 years and up – allows players to beat to death an ‘Aborigine’ during their quest to survive on the Australian continent.”

It’s true that the game allows you to survive in Australia and it also allows you to kill non-player characters in the game, ranging from animals to people. However, it’s a survival simulator and everything and everyone the player kills is done by choice. Despite Player Attack calling for the game to be censored and banned, they still admit that players can either join with the Aborigines or fight against them.

In fact, the official trailer doesn’t even mention the Aborigines, it focuses on farming, resource gathering and hunting animals for food.

Survival Island 3: Australia (Trailer)

Survival Island 3: Australia (free) Австралия – это самый большой остров в мире, а ещё это одно из самых опасных мест в мире. Нет, здесь нет войн и стрельбы, но здесь много агрессивных диких животных, которые будут рады съесть тебя на обед.

For added context, the description for the game reads…

“Your goal is to survive. Beware of angry animals, especially if you don’t have any weapon. At nights there is really dangerous, try to hide somewhere. In your own house, for example. Hunt animals or grow plants – you have to eat something. You also have to fight with aboriginals – you invaded their home!”

The Aborigines appear in the game at some point and players will be able to choose to work with them or fight against them, depending on the player’s choices and play-style; it’s not unlike every other sandbox simulator out there.

However, majority of the game focuses on the player surviving in the wild, alone. You can see more than 20 minutes of gameplay below, courtesy of PhoneInk.

Survival Island 3: Australia – Android – Gameplay

I did not “killing Aborigines” in recording gameplay !! Download Survival Island 3: Australia On Android : (Free) Description : Survival Island 3: Australia By GFTEAM Australia is the world’s largest island, and also one of the most dangerous places in the world.

It’s like a poor man’s version of Facepunch Studios’ Rust and Beam Team Game’s Stranded Deep. Additional videos on YouTube also reveal pretty much the same kind of gameplay as depicted above; players attempting to fight off kangaroos and crocodiles while building a house and surviving in Australia’s tough climate.

Another near 30 minute video from YouTuber Gaby GamingRO takes place later on in the game. The gameplay consists mostly of making food, weapons and building up the shelter. Still no Aborigines.

Survival Island 3 Australia w/Adi #2

Uploaded by Gaby GamingRO on 2015-12-22.

If someone wanted to make a stink about Survival Island 3 promoting animal abuse they would have a much stronger case than the one about it being a racist killing simulator.

Nevertheless, context-free outrage fueled by misinformation from New Matilda’s article has sprouted up a witch hunt against the developers. As noted by Liam Quinn and Lucy Thackray from the Daily Mail [Backup], the petition spread through the media like wildfire and led a lot of people calling for the title to be banned…

“Outraged people began calling on the game to be banned on Friday night and petition was created to force the game to be removed from online stores.”

Sites like the Brisbane Times [backup] and Sydney Morning Herald [backup] followed suit behind the other media outlets; all of whom are parroting the party line: it’s a game about killing indigenous people.

Daisy Dumas from Sydney Morning Herald writes…

“A game that requires players to bludgeon Aboriginal Australians to death has prompted outrage and been removed from stores, raising questions as to how an app that warns players to “beware of Aborigines” was ever allowed online.”

The game does not require you to bludgeon Aboriginal Australians. Unfortunately this kind of inflammatory language has a lot of people up in arms.

An updated article from the Sydney Morning Herald also notes that Australia’s government is getting involved and “demanding” answers. Dumas writes….

“Racial Discrimination Commissioner Tim Soutphommasane branding [the game’s] hatred “unacceptable”. “It’s unacceptable to see such promotion of violence and hatred against Aboriginal people,” he said, adding that he encouraged people offended by the game to make an official complaint.”

Even the ABC chimed in [Update: Following the publication of this article the ABC recently updated their story to better reflect the status of the situation], yes the same ABC in Australia that lied about #GamerGate.

Unfortunately the game’s marketing in a screenshot that read “Beware of Aborigines” has been used against it and as a tagline to fuel further outrage by news media. It’s almost like Rockstar stating “Beware of cops” on a GTA V poster. Then again, Take-Two would likely use that as a selling point since poor media representation and misinformation have actually helped them make billions on the Grand Theft Auto brand.

Journalist Miriam Cosic admitted on Twitter that she didn’t play the game, do any research, or find out more about the game before joining the crusade to have it banned.

Miriam Cosic on Twitter

@El_Buzz_O @Pikiran2ku Sure, why not? It brags about hunting them. Also basing my opinion on that of journos who have looked into it.

I can only imagine what they would do if the Bible was a new book on the market and a certain passage about stoning women was made the centerpiece of a smear campaign.

Nonetheless, following the New Matilda piece, Survival Island 3 appeared to be pulled from Google and Apple’s digital distribution services.

Apple told the Sydney Morning Herald that the app is no longer available on their store. You’ll get a redirect to the iTunes main store if you attempt to use the previous iTunes store listing, and if you attempt to go to Survival Island on Google Play the link says that it’s no longer available on the server.

Luckily I was able to catch an archive of when the app was available on their store from a Google listing, which displays the iTunes entry if you use the old app’s iTunes web address. The game is still available on Amazon’s page [backup] as of the writing of this article, but don’t expect it to stay up long now that the media has their narrative train moving full steam ahead.

Survival Island 3 originally launched back on December 15th, 2015 for $2.99 on iOS and Android devices. It’s a sequential entry in an open-world game series that follows the same concept of finding supplies, killing animals for food, and fighting off dangerous predators.

The previous entries in the series, such as Survival Island 2: Dinosaur Hunter, is still up and available on iTunes and Google.

I did reach out to the developer to ask them about the removal of the game from iTunes and Google, and if they choose to respond I’ll provide an update.

Basically, we’re seeing a narrative in the making here no different than what happened with #GamerGate, where the media have cooked up a panic based on misinformation. Yes, there are Aborigines in the game and yes they can be killed. The modifier worth noting is “can”, as in, a choice. It’s no different than choosing to kill cops or civilians in GTA V, or choosing to kill zombies or other humans in DayZ, or choosing to kill any and everyone in Fallout 4 and Skyrim.

It’s becoming frightening for the gaming industry, seeing as how lies from the media and the lack of fact checking can lead to a game being banned based on misconceptions.

And if we’re going to start pulling games because players can choose to kill certain NPCs in that game, we may as well start pulling every game where you can choose to kill a black person, an Asian person, a Hispanic person or a woman.

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Billy has been rustling Jimmies for years. The GJP cried and their tears became his milkshake. Contact.

  • scemar

    A sad example of one of the burdens holding back mobile gaming, apple and googles way of treating it as a non serious front.
    If they were serious they wouldn’t do this kind of thing.

    And another classic example of the corrupt or shameless “journalists” that either do no investigation or don’t care about facts as long as it pushes their narrative.

    • Gobl1n

      Speaking of a journalist not investigating…

      Straight from horse’s mouth.

      • Thanks, I’m adding those tweets to the article now so people know for sure that they didn’t even do their research and admit to it.

      • Gobl1n

        No problem. Just an FYI, there is a little typo I found.

        “Sites like the Brisbine Times”

        That should be Brisbane, not Brisbine.

      • Nice. Thanks for catching that. I fixed it.

      • C G Saturation

        One of the first things I understood from your article was that you obviously put a lot more time into investigating and gathering info about this whole mess than anyone in the mainstream media, government, or “offended” did.

        Isn’t it interesting how people always have time to get offended but not to bother checking simple facts?

      • I think people naturally react with a lot of emotional conviction to something they feel may have ties to how their culture or society is viewed.

        It was the American press who really got up in arms over Hatred due to the shooting spree problems in America. It was Koreans who got up in arms over Diablo 3’s RMAH due to their viewing games as potential gambling addiction devices. And it was the Hindu community that got up in arms over the depiction of their gods in the game SMITE.

        Oftentimes people have a hard time separating their emotions enough from a situation to be able to look clearly at the facts.

      • Jed Man

        including people with a deep connection to their gaming culture

      • scemar

        It’s always nice when they are honest, it’s something I appreciate.
        But regardless of it, is there even any doubt?
        I think at this point most of us can take it for granted that most of the mainstream type of “journalists” just copy headlines from each other, follow instructions given by their overlords or a mail list or write something random to make a story through low click days.
        It’s like their dishonesty has reached such a low and perception and everyone knows it that they just stopped caring and when they come out and admit it, they’re like “Yeah, sure, so what?”
        That’s the industry in a nutshell.

        But I keep noticing that the only ones that do real investigative work, and I use the term loosely because I mean small bits like tracking the source of a rumor but also bigger stuff like tracking a long chain to its source and verifying with the facts, the only ones doing it are the ones that would not fit the mainstream bill, the ones that are not into that narrative and are willing to challenge it.
        That’s a good thing, it shows who’s who in this whole drama playing out.

  • Hawk Hopper

    I first saw the Daily Mail article about this game. They mostly used screenshots of combat with the aborigines. But from the gameplay trailers, this game mostly looks like a survival game in Early Access. Like you said, it’s primarily about farming and gathering resources. It’s not an aborigine genocide simulator. This whole controversy is overblown by a bunch of triggered retards (I repeat myself.)

    I hope they never get a chance to watch the excellent movie The Proposition:

  • Nick

    When you have the level of genocide that happened in Australia (far beyond ‘black’ americans etc) then you would understand the sensitivities being evoked here. But no, your just a self-indulgent gamer who can’t see a wider reality beyond your screen. Good that the game is gone, and this should be a wake-up call to developers.

    • Gamer

      So Black NPCs are off limits to shoot in video games? What is ok to shoot in video games? Maybe everything is ok to shoot, since you know, it’s all fake.

      Or we could just never put black people into video games. Is that what you racists want?

      • I know for a fact that these racists don’t seem to mind white people being killed, shot and murdered. Heck, they even praise it if it happens in real life.

        Swap the words ‘racists’ and ‘people’ for ‘feminists’ and ‘men’ and you have feminism.

        It’s all the same shitty sides of the coin.

    • But no, your just a self-indulgent gamer who can’t see a wider reality

      Oh the irony.

  • Nick

    So you censor my critical opinion of your’re a complete hypocrite..anti-censorship? who’s the liar?

    • What? There’s no censorship of opinions here. Your comment may have just taken a while to load. Nothing is in the pending section in Disqus.

      As for your comment…

      When you have the level of genocide that happened in Australia (far
      beyond ‘black’ americans etc) then you would understand the
      sensitivities being evoked here.

      The exact same thing could apply to Native Americans or Blacks in America and say games like Gun or GTA should be banned, too.

      your just a self-indulgent gamer who can’t see a wider reality beyond your screen.

      I’m not the one calling for the censorship of games that don’t fit my worldview.

      Good that the game is gone, and this should be a wake-up call to developers.

      So anything that in anyway can be perceived as an offense by a group of people for any reason at all should be censored and banned from anyone else having access to it?

    • C G Saturation

      Disqus sometimes fails to show comments, or says they need to be approved if you edit them too much. I’ve had it happen to me elsewhere, and I thought I was being censored.

  • Just like how GTAV “encourages” violence against women, or how in Hitman “players are invited to explore (being violent to women)”

    As opposed to players being dropped into a world with its own rules that are applied universally and equally without factoring race, gender or anything else.

    I look forward to the next GTA game that has “SJW mode”, so if you hit a woman or an ethnic minority your car goes spiralling off into the sky and the NPC is unharmed and calls you a pissbaby.

  • Stuart Roberts

    I’m afraid you don’t get it at all ‘Billy D’. It has no relevance that there is a range of killing options. The game (and I have researched what is available on the net about the actual content), even based on your description here, caricatures Aboriginal Australians and dehumanises them en masse, simplifying their identity to objects that are sub-human, primitive targets for murder. These are not fictional characters, like ‘soldiers’ or ‘cowboys’, this is a real group of people that are being dehumanised by the game. This is bad enough, and in the context of Australia’s genocidal history with Aboriginal people, this depiction of Aborigines in the ‘game’ is sickening and wrong on every level.

    • Well you’re ignoring that the media lied. I think that needs to be established first. We should all be able to agree that lying from media outlets is bad, right?

      Second… you’re confusing design mechanics with the perception of targeted hatred.

      What you’re criticizing is design implementation based on a rudimentary function of AI. In development terms: it’s cost effective.

      For those outside looking in who have zero knowledge about game design, it’s easy to say this is about discrimination or hatred of the people, but the reality is that it’s a low-budget, copy-and-paste mobile game that borrowed everything from its prequel (Survival Island 2) and just changed the dinosaurs into kangaroos and Aborigines. It’s a mesh swap as far as design mechanics go.

      • The mechanics of the game and its development is completely irrelevant. You are defending a game that is patently offensive to not just Australia’s indigenous, but also those of us who have a good understanding of Australia’s recent history. Offensive is offensive. I can only wonder if you would also defend a game that shows a bunch of white people in cloaks hanging African Americans from trees if that game existed?

      • I’m not defending the game, I’m attacking the fact that the media lied about what the game is about. It’s a survival simulator. It is not an aborigine killing simulator.

        I’m disturbed that you don’t seem to find a problem with the media misleading you and lying about the content of the game. In this case, you don’t even have to interact with the aborigines … in which case, I have to ask you: why are you offended at something you don’t have to do in the game?

      • Simon

        Because you can do it.

      • C G Saturation

        Because most people love being told what to get offended by. They have no will or intelligence to form their own judgment. It’s so much easier to rage when told to rage. Even if they’re being blatantly lied to, it doesn’t matter.

      • rpsgc

        Ban/censor everything that is ‘offensive’ (key word for: ‘I don’t like it!’). Oh my, how authoritarian of you.

        What’s next? Book burnings are always fun, eh?

      • C G Saturation

        “Good understanding of Australia’s recent history”, eh? Did you know about this?

        That’s just the tip of the iceberg. Where are the people getting offended over that kind of thing, hmm?

      • I can only wonder if you would also defend a game that shows a bunch of white people in cloaks hanging African Americans from trees if that game existed?

        Bet you would defend a game that shows a bunch of black people shooting white people and yelling “crackers” at them if that game existed.

        That or you stay completely silent about it.


      • C G Saturation

        I’m not sure if I could say lying from media outlets is bad when their primary purpose for existing is to spread lies.

        I personally think it’s bad. But from a success standpoint, they’re doing a great job deceiving the populace.

      • We’re living in a society where Hillary Clinton can still fool people with the gender wage gap myth.

        So there’s the general ‘intelligence’ of the populace.

      • Jed Man

        These comments intellectualize the issue and shift focus away from the facts that there is good reason for concern over the way indigenous Australians can be treated in the game.

        That’s casual racism.

        Bill can I ask:
        Do you have any aboriginal friends or alternatively, do you belong to a cultural group that you’re deeply connected to that has ever been portrayed in this way?

        (Sorry gaming culture doesn’t quite compare culturally)

        Just cause casual racism is common, or that people don’t understand game design fails to be relevant. Period.

        It IS just a game – sure..
        A game with a poor regard for Australia’s first nations people.
        It could’ve been designed any number of more acceptable ways.
        It wasn’t..

        The thing is. Broad cultural values the world over are always changing. Gaming is not immune from this and if the wider community speak (which they have) then the media circus runs with it – that always happens.

        On the topic of broad cultural change.
        Does anyone know or remember what a ‘gollywog’ doll is?
        Back in the day there were people arguing for and against.


        the cigarette lollies like ‘FAGS’ and other cigar shaped ones that either changed their name so as not to offend gay people or were rebranded as dynamite sticks so as not to promote smoking to young people.

        Redskin lollies no longer have a picture of an American Indian cheiftan.

        Point is – Australia does have a casual racism element and Survival island 3 fits in with that submersive culture.

        Things change… Given our history it really shouldn’t be such a suprise that there is widespread outrage over this game.

        Games can be fun – who doesn’t love a good game.

        But there are games, videos etc that either directly or indirectly appeal and condone to blatant poor taste and there are gamers who live for nothing but the game, will defend the game above all else etc.. Spending copious amounts of their time & life ‘playing around’

        These gamers are victims to the ‘sleep of their senses’
        living more in the world of fantasy than reality. Their ignorance is no suprise.

      • shift focus away from the facts that there is good reason for concern over the way indigenous Australians can be treated in the game.

        But you admit here this is a problem with Australia. Outside of Australia it’s really not the average consumer/gamer’s fault your government and media are racist. More than anything you should be outraged at the fact that your media misrepresented a game to create racial outrage and tension. Why are you okay with this?

        Do you have any aboriginal friends or alternatively, do you belong to a cultural group that you’re deeply connected to that has ever been
        portrayed in this way?

        That’s a pretty leading question and personalizes the matter. I’ve been approaching this objectively from the outside looking in.

        Just cause casual racism is common, or that people don’t understand game design fails to be relevant. Period.

        It does not fail to be relevant. If the designer had swapped the texture from Aborigines to green zombies and changed the NPC title to “Green Zombie” there would be no outrage. Functionally they would be no different than the pigs in Minecraft.

        You’re misconstruing design mechanics for cultural misappropriation. You’re choosing to be offended over a choice you’re allowed to make in the game. You don’t have to interact or kill the Aborigines in the game.

        Ultimately it sounds like your argument boils down to: don’t even give players the choice.

        But there are games, videos etc that either directly or indirectly appeal and condone to blatant poor taste

        Right, and some games/movies/etc., are made in poor taste. But this slippery slope of banning things because people got offended over the media misrepresenting it is exactly the thing that #GamerGate was about: journalistic responsibility.

        Gamers were afraid that corrupt media would do exactly what they’re doing now. Leading witch hunts to ban games because someone got offended somewhere.

        Let me ask you a few things: before leading a witch hunt against the developers how come no one talked to the developer first?

        If people don’t like the way a certain class or group of people are portrayed in a game, should every other game that gives players options to harm/kill certain minority groups be banned as well? And if so, should we also ban movies, music and television shows that also depict some material involving minority groups that people don’t agree with?

        And are you ultimately saying that games designed to give people choice in how they play and who they kill should restrict that choice just to avoid offending people who don’t even play games?

    • rpsgc

      I genuinely don’t know if this guy is just a troll or an actual brain-dead SJW.

    • C G Saturation

      Sorry, I’m too busy brutally murdering human males in nearly every single game that exists, and watching tons of movies of human males being violently torn to shreds. It’s okay, they’re just human males.

      • SG

        I’ve played Far Cry 2 – I guess that means I’m a racist for shooting all those dark-skinned Africans?
        And Homefront – I guess I’m also racist towards North Koreans.
        And those Wild West games where I fought off the “Injuns”.
        And all those WW2 games where it must have been my secretly suppressed racist tendencies that led me to shooting those poor Japanese and German opponents.

        Thank you Internet for making me realism just how racist I am.

    • Rupert

      Great post Stuart. But they just don’t get it and continually deflect to side issues, such as game mechanics, media inaccuracy or “we kill people all the time in other games”. They’ll never get it, even though Billy’s article is well written and logical within the narrowest of contexts of gaming and freedom of expression.

      The context for Australians is repairing a brutal and sickeningly violent European invasion. Even into the 1930s Aborigines were hunted like in this game for sport. Unfortunately there are meatheads in Australia and elsewhere that will enjoy reenacting a hideous past.

      This has touched a nerve for a reason. As a number of patient, intelligent and articulate posters have demonstrated, this is not your usual confected outrage by an online lynch mob. We will not allow our first peoples to be dehumanised for the entertainment of the gaming community. Sorry if that inconveniences you.

      • The context for Australians is repairing a brutal and sickeningly violent European invasion. Even into the 1930s Aborigines were hunted like in this game for sport.

        I completely understand this point of view… but the same could be said of the gross atrocities that befell the Native American Indians here in North America during the era of the pioneers. And yes, some of them did get angry and want to ban the game Gun from being sold due to segments in the game allowing players to kill the Native Americans. However, Activision stuck to their guns (no pun intended) and kept the game available for purchase.

        Unfortunately there are meatheads in Australia and elsewhere that will enjoy reenacting a hideous past.

        Well this could be said for any game in any period where racist actions took place. There are mods for Mount & Blade set during very violent and racially tense periods between the Czars and the Jews. There are mods set during the slavery era and mods set during the tumultuous French Revolution.

        Would it really be fair to everyone else that we ban or censor art that some cultures or gamers are unfamiliar with because some player who acquired for the game might derive pleasure out of being a bigot or a racist?

        We will not allow our first peoples to be dehumanised for the entertainment of the gaming community. Sorry if that inconveniences you.

        I don’t think this is a very good game at all, but the precedent of the media using lies to fester outrage bothers me a great deal. If you want to be outraged over the option of killing an NPC in a game, you can… but let’s be honest: your outrage derived from falsehoods and I will never condone media using lies as a platform to push sociopolitical agendas.

      • Rupert

        Enjoyed your articulate reply and agree to disagree. But please don’t lie in the last sentence. I am not outraged/naive/misinformed, and I am responding to your description of the game, not to descriptions in the mainstream media.

        You put that last bit in to demean me as ignorant. Then your line about “never condoning media lies” elevates you as taking the high road. Sometimes people can disagree with you without being fools you know.

      • I am not outraged/naive/misinformed, and I am responding to your description of the game, not to descriptions in the mainstream media.

        Fair enough.

        You put that last bit in to demean me as ignorant.

        I suppose I shouldn’t have said “your” but “their” — since there is a lot of outrage over the game based on what’s been circulating in mainstream media outlets. It was a comment that was a bit too broad and including you in it, which I admit wasn’t fair. The line wasn’t to demean you personally as being ignorant but to point out that the game has been in existence since December and it wasn’t until the media crafted a narrative about it being racist did it get any attention at all.

        your line about “never condoning media lies” elevates you as taking the high road. Sometimes people can disagree with you without being fools you know.

        I suppose that is a failure on my part dealing with things like #GamerGate over nearly two years. A large number of people not familiar with gaming actually think it is about sexism in gaming. The completely dishonest Wikipedia article helps fester misinformation about it.

        And I don’t take you for a fool.

      • Rupert

        Cheers and, as an Australian, I would like to personally apologise to all media-wary posters for Rupert Murdoch. We kicked him out of Adelaide in the early ’60s for being a wanker. Never thought he’d amount to anything.

        Big mistake.

    • Your post is a complete embarrassment from start to finish.

      Getting offended over a fictional video game. What a sad c**t.

      You should be banned from using the Internet. Or better still, banned from breathing.

      • Stuart Roberts

        Can only pity your insecurity.

      • Getting offended, angry and completely butthurt over a fictional video game. That makes you the insecure one.

      • Stuart Roberts

        Right on dude. You must be right.

  • Ricardo Lima

    I’m sure the games aborigines pixels are being protected from even existing.

  • RoniOh

    It’s clear that the “writer” of this article (for want of a better word) has zero knowledge of Australian history or the genocide of Australian aboriginals. It would be like an American promoting a game that has the whipping and lynching of African American slaves. Just because its wrapped up in the context of a game, doesnt give you a free pass. There are some things that are fucking WRONG. Australian aboriginals were rounded up and beaten to death in Australian history – just as this game shows. The random hunting and killing of Australian aboriginal people is a very, very, very sensitive cultural issue for Australians – of which this writer seems to know diddly fucking squat.

    • There are some things that are fucking WRONG

      Such as media outlets lying about the content of the game. It never promoted that the purpose was to kill aboriginal tribes. My question to you is why are you defending media journalists who failed to do any basic fact checking?

      • C G Saturation

        Isn’t it interesting how many people willingly believe and act based upon lies whilst blinding themselves to simple facts? Humans!

    • David

      You do know there is a game out there where you put slaves on a boat right? Some sort of slave tetris game. All you idiots are doing is making this game popular like Hatred. Who cares if someone makes a game like this. It’s not typically going to sell well. But now it will because gamers have heard about it and people in general don’t like having things censored for no good reason. You people are really stupid. You feign outrage to get things you don’t like banned to stroke your egos. And because corporations continue to give into you, you continue to get more and more easily offended. It’s not about the game, it’s about you and your ability to get things you don’t like banned. My advice is grow up.

      • C G Saturation

        The really obvious thing here is that none of these people would have gotten offended if the media didn’t tell them to do so.

    • C G Saturation

      It’s clear that the writer of this article wasted his time writing, because you obviously didn’t bother reading it and are jumping to conclusions based on lies fed to you by lazy sensationalist rags.

    • Gamer

      Did you know there are black NPCs and pedestrians in GTA V? Did you know you can murder them, run them over, and kill them with fists or guns?

      OMG such racist. /sarcasm

      Grow up.

    • Jesus wept, probably one of the most cringing, outraged whiny posts I’ve read. Simply embarrassing.

      It’s a fictional video game. Grow up you fucking crybaby.

  • BigChief

    As an Aussie, let me even out these hyper-offended “white”-knight comment brigaders. A bunch of stuff happened in this country before any of these pampered babies, their parents, and their parents’ parents were born. A continent inhabited by nomadic tribesman was settled by colonizers who laid the foundation for a unified nation. It was a bloody process to say the least, though not any different to the histories of other developed nations.

    Today Australia is a highly developed and prosperous country that has made peace with its past. Abos, Anglos and people of other ethnic groups get along well despite our governments, educators and media outlets fanning the flames of disharmony along the lines of race, gender and sexual orientation. Truth is no one except perpetually outraged Twitter babies and scheming politicians cares about pixels getting bludgeoned in an iphone game.

    The game “dehumanises” Aboriginals, does it? But other similar games are ok because you square off against white people and animals instead? This is the same social justice cult bullshit as feminists crying “GTA promotes rape culture!”

    Just read the way they string sentences together. “Simplifying their identity”, “wrong on every level”, “offensive is offensive”, “sensitivities being evoked”. Not even the censorious Christian mothers of yesteryear were as obnoxious and whiny as you crybabies. One guy writes, “this is a real group of people”. It’s pixels you dolt! You might as well cry that Dynasty Warriors promotes Chinese genocide. Get lost and leave our right to self-expression alone.

    Good article as usual Billy. Another innocent video game developer is thrown to the SocJus wolves as sacrifice to some irrelevant political agenda. This has got to stop already.

    • Thanks and well said. This outrage is misdirected and constructed around a false premise orchestrated by the media itself. You’re 100% correct that a lot of these issues are being fanned by xenophobic-inducing media outlets who do nothing more than chisel down art into outrage for clicks.

      • C G Saturation

        I think it’s more like, this is another example of why most protagonists and enemies in games are both white males. Anything else automatically summons offended people. Doesn’t matter how you depict stuff, they will find a way to get offended.

        The fact that media managed to (again) distort the facts in this case and still garner such a large following shows just how gullible and quick to anger the generic mob populace is. People think they’ve gotten more intelligent, but they really haven’t.

      • TheGreatGamerGod

        I am offended at this comment and demand that your avatar be replaced by an average white male who doesn’t conform to the racial stereotype of having red eyeballs and wanting to destroy the world with insert X virus here.

      • raining stars

        No,what fans a lot of these issues are fools who have never experienced racism a day in their lives and are more than willing to deny it exists. The fact that you think the comment you are responding to above was “well said”, shows you know aboslutely nothing about Australia, Australian history, Aboriginal or Australian racism.

        The only people who use the term to “Abos” to refer to Australian Aboriginals are racists. It is no different from using the “N” word to refer to Black Americans.

        As an Aboriginal person, who actually knows the history of my people and the history of Australian colonisation and settlement, the claim that Australia was “inhabited by nomadic tribesman” is complete codswallop. This was the stereotypical racist view which was held in the 1930s and has been widely discredited, except amongst racists. Aboriginal Australian society was and still is a deeply complex one. While some Aboriginal clans were nomadic, many others were not. In Victoria and other parts of southern Australia, Aboriginal clans established permanent settlements, as well intricate irrigation and crop management systems.

        The European colonisers carried out genocide against Aboriginal people, hunting us and carrying out hundreds of massacres, while also poisoning our water and food supplies, distributing disease infected blankets to kill us. My people belonged to the Kalkadoon clan, who fought one of the last great battles in the Frontier War against the brutality of the European colonisers. Only a small number survived, after being brutalised and killed by the European colonisers.

        Australia has NOT made its peace with the past. Aboriginal Australians still have the worst socio-economic indicators in the country, our people die 20 years younger than the non-Aboriginal population, we still have the highest incarceration rate, our land is still being taken and our people are still being killed in custody (one of the most recent cases was a young 22 old woman, who died in custody after being arrested for outstanding parking tickets, while another elder man died in the back of a police van, cooked to death in the heat). No reparations have been made for either stolen wages (which saw Aboriginal people treated as slave and bonded labour), no compensation has been made to the victims or the families of the Stolen Generation (when thousands of Aboriginal children were stolen from their families). In the Twenty-first century we have seen the genocidal practices against our community continue with the Northern Territory Intervention, which saw the Australian military invade Aboriginal communities. We are also fighting the Western Australian state govt and Australian Fedral government, who are seeking to ethnically cleanse more than 100 Aboriginal communities. If Australia had made peace with the past, none of these things would be happening.

        And yes, the game does dehumanise us. Not only is the depiction of Aboriginals appalling, the bludgeoning to death of Aboriginals given the historical genocide in Australia is also dehumanising. And yes, we are a real group of people, except to the racists who think its okay call us “Abos” and deny the genocide that Australia was built on.

        The people who should “get lost” are the racists such as the fool whose post you think is great. But of course, racists love to claim that their racism is just “self expression” and “free speech”, ignoring the fact that self-expression and “free speech” comes with responsibility. You don’t get to be racist douche bags without being called out on it. You don’t like it? Too bad. Deal with it. Just like we have to live with the denial of our humanity and the racist history of Australia every day by entitled racist douches, who think video games like this are fine.

      • Interesting post.

        I can see that you’re obviously passionate about the issue but you’re conflating a lot of things together that are very different and only partially related through tangential means.

        For instance, this game wasn’t made to be racist against Aboriginals. The NPCs are just replacements for the dinosaurs in a previous game, and other animals in the game before that. The developer is known for making cheap games with cheap themes based on surviving in the wild. It wasn’t intended to be a racist murder simulator. That’s not even the goal of the game.

        If we were to use that logic, then GTA should be banned because it allows people to play as white cops and kill poor black people. Simply because a game allows something to happen doesn’t necessitate that it’s advocating it as some sort of social commentary.

        As for the rest of your post… you’re talking about the failures of your state government. They are perpetuating racism through negligence, not the game.

        Additionally, you’re talking about the depiction of Aboriginals in media… well the media happens to be the institution that turned this situation into one of racism. The game itself doesn’t mention anything about race and has nothing to do with the politics surrounding race relations.

        You’re getting angry about this game most people didn’t care about when it first released, only because the media informed you that it was something to be offended about. There are thousands of games out there made, some of which include killing all different kinds of people from various races, religions and ethnicities.

        In this case, though, no one seems to be taking issue with the fact that outrage has been directed towards a developer based on the media’s lies about a game being a racial murder sim when it’s not that at all. As mentioned, you can play the game for as long as you like without even encountering any Aborigines in the game. It’s a survival sim set in Australia.

        Unfortunately, you and many others who are suffering from the poor infrastructure of Australia’s political endeavors to address the Aborigines situation are taking your anger out on the wrong targets.

        You SHOULD be angry at your government for trying to misdirect blame to a foreign developer instead of using this opportunity to provide better institutional systems to allow Aboriginals to grow and maintain their own sub-culture without worries of racism.

        You SHOULD be even angrier at the media for misleading you into thinking that a Russian developer who made a cheap mobile game is making things worse for Australia’s race relations, when in reality it’s the racist media outlets pitting everyday people like you and those playing the game against each other for no good reason.

        You SHOULD be angry at every single self-proclaimed progressive who is using this opportunity to further create racial tension while garnering attention and national fame based on the mockery that is Australian journalism.

        Your people are suffering because of the corruption that festers deep within the veins of Australia’s farcical government and media institutions.

        Vilifying some Russian developer over a throwaway app is the wrong way about it. How about you redirect your anger at the people making your people’s lives miserable: how about you get 80,000 people to kick the corrupt arseholes out of Australia’s parliament? How about you get those 80,000 people to badger the news media to tell the f**king truth and stop lying to create faux outrage and get people to attack each other over silly things like pixels in a game.

        This should be an opportunity you and your people should capitalize on to hold your government accountable for the atrocities that Aboriginals have suffered in Australia. Y

        our MPs and your media’s hack journalists are the ones who are perpetuating poor race relations and they’re the ones who should be answering for it.

      • Jed Man

        Totally agree with this comment.

        “Australia has NOT made its peace with the past.”

        To suggest otherwise is as ill-informed as some of the journo’s who picked up this ‘news’ and ran with it.

  • anopolis

    i’ve always love the concept of gaming “journalists” myself. I love me some gaming, sure, but with journalists they are not, never will be so long they write merely about entertainment.

  • C G Saturation

    So where are all the people jumping to defend those who suffered decades of physical and psychological trauma at the hands of Australian racism? Oh, right. They don’t matter because the news didn’t tell people to care about them.

  • Australia has become such a nanny country with the minority groups causing hell over nothing.
    Its obviously okay to depict killing white people in games or african americans or asian BUT not okay to depict aboriginals…
    May be the developers need to change the graphics so those NPC are alien looking, green, and slimy with 3 eyes and spit acid…. Maybe that will keep the media happy!?

    • Rupert

      Learn some history Dazza and you might understand. My lot landed in chains on this continent in 1826. Europeans made it a hellhole. We made it a paradise. Then new European arrivals like Andrew Bolt came in and started whinging about “Ew, I’m a white male and so discriminated against” and encouraging every racist and misogynist wingnut to come crawling out from under their rocks and start complaining.

  • Ghost

    Billy, the requirements of being a journalist these days seems quite low. Can I be one too now?

    • Sure. Just find a game with artwork that has a minority in it or a woman with a cup size larger than an ‘A’. It doesn’t matter what the context is because you’ll have to ignore all context in order to push a specific political agenda. And then find someone on Twitter or Facebook to get offended on behalf of any of the fictional characters.

      Proceed to make a blog post about how the game is racist/sexist/bigoted/etc. Send a link to Polygon or Kotaku and then watch the hits roll in. Oh yeah and don’t forget to link to your Patreon account.

      Congratulations, you’re now a journalist.

      • Ghost

        Sweet, can’t wait for all the internet money.

  • MK

    I lived in the west for 5 years (England) and the culture there (or lack threof) was a real shocker to me. The people there were so politically corect that it made them look like fanatic members of some religion who are unable to let their faith be criticized. It was sometimes almost to the point of being psycotic. England is a fascist country nowadays.

    And now to the game: Firstly: There are a TON of games nowadays where all your enemies are white people including civilians. When was the last time that such a game was banned?

    Secondly: So what if it has historical conotations? So what if there have been massacers? There are a ton of historical games including strategies that have historical conotations to even massacers. When was the last time such a game was banned?

    Thirdly: This game was not designed to offend anyone on purpose. So if anyone is offended then it’s their and ONLY their problem.

    People who report and call for a ban of this game have sunken to the lowest lows of snitches of totalitarian regimes like comunism that aggressively report everything thats disaproved by the regime.

    • Noble Darkmoon

      I remember Duke Nukem 3D threatening to get banned in Australia unless it removed the gore and blood from the game. Rise of the Triads had even more gore splatter in it so did others that didn’t get the same scrutiny. The thing was to remove sexual violence from the game was the argument that was being used at the time.

  • Audie Bakerson

    This is why they took your guns Australia: So people like this could rule over you.

    (And they did an awful job of that too. Remember when we told you only the criminals would have guns if you did that?)

    • So Australia is America in five years? Amazing.

      • Audie Bakerson

        An automatic is actually pretty simple crafting wise to the point where if you are making a gun outside the law with a capacity of more than one, you might as well make it full auto.

        I think Australia has a higher rate of production for non-police/military automatics than we do, especially per capita.

  • Tom Anderson

    These social justice warriors are so funny. They get all offended when a game gets taken off the market. These SJWs think the news media gets it all wrong but can’t find the gameplay footage either.

    Here’s the bludgeoning style gameplay that would deflate half your argument.

    • Jed Man

      that’s fuctup

  • StarWarsNumbers

    “Give them an inch, and they’ll take a mile”.

  • Gamer

    But but but Jim Sterling said these bloggers don’t influence anything and you are an idiot if you think they are talking away games, censoring games, removing games, making devs change the name of Tranny Gladiator, or making changes to games out of fear.

    Sarcasm over, leave the gaming industry alone you fascists.

  • fnd

    “I can only imagine what they would do if the Bible was a new book on the market and a certain passage about stoning women was made the centerpiece of a smear campaign.”Thank God the bible was wrote thousands of years ago :^). But having ancient status is not a guarantee anymore.

  • Getting offended over a fictional video game. These sad c**ts are everything that’s wrong with society today.

  • Even the promotional material for the game reads: “You also have to fight with aboriginals – you invaded their home!”

    So… it was the games developers who lied?

    I wonder why they did that?

    Maybe because the option to kill aborigines is the only unique selling point this game has, as you admit yourself Billy D:”The NPCs are just replacements for the dinosaurs in a previous game”.

    • Maybe because the option to kill aborigines is the only unique selling point this game has,

      That’s a really good point, and likely true. If the media and others wanted to get riled up over the game’s promotional material I think they would have a much better case. Most people admit that the promo screens poorly depict the Aborigines and is somewhat misleading to the core of the gameplay.

      But I think you’re right in that it was likely a selling point to give the game a sense of danger, because otherwise it’s pretty boring.

  • Noble Darkmoon

    This is not my style of game, for several reasons, the camera angle seems to low like it is scraping the dirt and your able to see the detail of grass when you walk through it. Another is it lacks depth, of gameplay, and not very strategically orientated or what the objective of the game actually is. I have played and enjoyed games like x-com series and jagged alliance(Topographical turn based strategy), quake and doom (3d shooters), Tex Murphy series (Mystery, puzzle solving, with FMV).

    It lacks currency in the game, and will not be able to become pvp or multiplayer in the current format.

    It will also require things in it as well to give a political and business dimension, such as tribal wars, where you could either align with one side or another, or even try and trade with both sides. This would take on a non-liner aspect which will add depth to the game, and would require multiple times to play it. Choosing the direction you go would allow for certain things to occur and access to certain items.

    I wouldn’t play this game, but i don’t see why it should be banned.
    The arguments being used to attack the game are flawed, and based on false premises.

    • Totally agree with every single one of your points. It’s a pretty poor game and it’s ridiculous it’s received the attention that it has based on manufactured outrage.

  • JimatheDims

    I was lied to, sorry for signing the petition

    • It’s not your fault that you acted on misinformation. It’s mighty big of you to acknowledge it, though. In fact you’re the first to acknowledge that you were lied to. Maybe there’s hope yet.

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