Epic Distances Itself From Murder Sim – But Should It?

It’s not uncommon to see game devs faced with a constant backlash from those who don’t really seem to “get” gaming or what it represents. Unfortunately for those quick to decry video games, the upcoming title Hatred by Destructive Creations have been joined by someone outside the public and critics, Epic Games.

“Hatred is an isometric shooter with disturbing atmosphere of mass killing, where player take on the role of a cold blood antagonist, who is full of hatred for humanity. It’s a horror, but here YOU are the villain.” Perhaps it’s understandable, these open world levels put getting into a shootout with the cops on a level outside of the colourful (literally) by comparison GTA games.

Epic Games stepped in and asked them to remove the UE4 logo from the videos, noting that the “Unreal Engine 4 is available to the general public for use ‘for any lawful purpose,’ and we explicitly don’t exert any sort of creative control or censorship over projects. However, the video is using the trademarked Unreal Engine 4 logo without permission from Epic, and we’ve asked for the removal of our logo from all marketing associated with this product”.

But (and hear me out for a minute!), what if Hatred is glaringly obvious social commentary on the ‘games turning people into violent criminals debate? For so long now, Grand Theft Auto have been harked by the media as a murder simulator, blamed for numerous atrocities. Naturally I’m sitting in the same camp as many of you, games don’t turn people into killers. As a medium we’re constantly pressing forward, pushing boundaries and showing ourselves as an art form.

What separates Hatred from the likes of BioShock or Call of Duty, that the actions of our protagonist aren’t justified by a little bit of blood or being told that the enemy are the bad guys? Most games involve violent acts, Epic Games are no strangers to this (cough, Gears of War, cough). Hatred looks pretty interesting, though I have to ask myself why they’re distancing themselves from this one, is it just the violence or the possible bad PR that’s making them avoid touching this one with a barge pole?

Written by: darksonic

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