Valve has recently been in the headlines for sending out a bunch of take down notices that were supposedly sent to creators of lewd games like HunieDev who created HuniePop. These notices claimed that the games on Steam violated their rules and guidelines and would result in removal. These notices seemed to only have gone out to Japanese or Japanese inspired romance or erotic games and not more mainstream games like DEAD OR ALIVE which literally allows you to control the bounce of a female characters boobs. (OK Valve…)
– IMPORTANT NOTICE –
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
After a mass outcry from fans and developers alike Valve later told studios they were sorry for the confusion and to disregard their previous take down notices. They were super vague about their current process of re-reviewing lewd games.
— #WAIFUHOLOCAUST UPDATE —
I have just received word from Valve apologizing for the confusion, saying to DISREGARD their previous e-mail about the violation, that they are in the process of re-reviewing the game and will follow up soon.
— HunieDev (@HuniePotDev) May 19, 2018
Most eroge titles on Steam are censored but you can download patches to remove the censorship so it’s a bit of a work around to get censorship free games which should be enough of a barrier for those who do not wish to experience the lewdness. (Or you know… if they don’t like lewd games… they could just not buy them… but whatever.)
Valve surprised us this week by saying they will no longer censor games or block them from their platform unless they are illegal or obviously trolling in this blog post.
For us lewd gamers this is super exciting! I’m excited for a world where I can choose what games I would like to enjoy and have a platform where I can support the people behind them. This is also a HUGE game changer for the eroge industry as it will offer something we’ve never had before. A client for eroge downloads. I for one am an Apple user but I do have a PC strictly for playing eroge and I’ve often become extremely frustrated by all the workarounds I need to do just to play games I’ve bought directly from the creators. If I had a proper client to download and launch these games it could save me from those stressful “WHY THE FUCK ISN’T THIS WORKING?!” moments.
We also have to wonder where this will leave FAKKU and Nutaku who have been the leaders in eroge outside of Japan for the past few years. Will they choose to embrace it and also release their games on the Steam client or will this inspire innovation on their end to create an even better store? Both would be great for the consumer! As the Flash era comes to an end Nutaku will definitely have to innovate and this could be just the motivation they need.
My hope is that this will open up the world of eroge and make it more accessible to fans. I also hope it pushes developers to make better content and encourages Japanese developers to localize their games outside of Japan. Eroge is great but there are A LOT of duds out there and a A LOT of games that feel very much like a cash grab. Many titles are simply a ripoff of mainstream games like Fate/Grand Order or Granblue Fantasy but with more boobs and less quality when it comes to game play and graphics. As a gamer myself I don’t like to feel like I’m getting cheated or wasting my time. Now I will have the chance to vote with my dollars and support the developers who are amazing and so will you.
This decision is also getting Valve a lot of bad press because you can’t really make everyone happy. This is my personal opinion but I firmly believe that if you allow ultra violent games there is really no reason to not allow sexual games. I don’t really understand how one can look at all the shooter games and then think sex is the bottom of the barrel. Sex is legal and creates life but shooting people up and mugging people is illegal and ends life yet so many people seem to think of games that involve sex as less tasteful then games like Grand Theft Auto.
I believe us as consumers should have the right to buy what games we want and parents have the responsibility to control what their children have access to. (I could go on about how our lack of personal responsibility is being pushed into overdrive by constant handholding from companies but I will save that for my personal rants on my own Facebook.)
All in all I know I am pleased with this announcement! How about you? Let us know in the comments or tweet us!