MIAMI (AP/KDKA) — An upcoming computer video game that would allow players to re-create school shootings by stalking school hallways and racking up kills has been condemned as insensitive and inappropriate by the parents of students who were shot to death during the school massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High.
The game — titled “Active Shooter” and slated for a June 6 release — is branded as a “SWAT simulator” that lets players choose between being an active shooter terrorizing a school or the SWAT team responding to the shooting.
“Pick your role, gear up and fight or destroy! Be the good guy or the bad guy. The choice is yours!” the description on Steam’s website says.
The About This Game section of the website goes on to say, “Depending on the role, your objective might be to protect and extract or hunt and destroy.”
It was published by the company Acid, which has said it plans on selling the game for $5 to $10.
Screenshots from the game show gameplay as a SWAT member with on-screen objectives like “find and neutralize the shooter” and “avoid civil causalities.”
Gameplay screenshots from the school shooter’s perspective show on-screen statistics like health, ammo and tallies of the number of civilians and cops killed.
The publishers say they also plan to add a “civilian survival mode” to the game.
A note on the game’s page says, “Please do not take any of this seriously. This is only meant to be the simulation and nothing else. If you feel like hurting someone or people around you, please seek help from local psychiatrists or dial 911 (or applicable).”
On May 23, Acid posted a “clarification” saying they had received accusations and criticism since the game was announced.
The publisher said the game “does not promote any sort of violence, especially any soft [sic] of a mass shooting.”
The post goes on to say Acid wrote to video game distribution company Valve about the game’s content and release.
“After receiving such high amount of critics and hate, I will more likely remove the shooter’s role in this game by the release, unless if it can be kept as it is right now,” the post said.
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