On this week’s Pixels & Ink podcast, Australian Target and K-Mart stores decide that Grand Theft Auto V is evil and pull it from their shelves, even though the Oz ratings board has no problems with it. Phil waxes lyrical about the 70s version of Tales of the Cryptkeeper and advises everyone to check it out. Finally, Mel plays the latest LittleBigPlanet 3 and it’s not quite the easy-peasy breezy experience she was hoping for.
Two big names in retail, Kmart and Target, have removed Grand Theft Auto 5 from their store shelves in Australia in response to an online petition.
The petition, which currently has over 46,000 supporters, asked Target to remove the game because of it’s enabling of in-game violence against women.
The petition on change.org says “It’s a game that encourages players to murder women for entertainment. The incentive is to commit sexual violence against women, then abuse or kill them to proceed or get ‘health’ points – and now Target are stocking it and promoting it for your Xmas stocking.”
After Target announced removing the game from its Australian stores, Kmart followed suit. According to Kotaku Australia the decision was made by the company after a review of the games’ content.
It’s understandable that people are going to get upset about certain themes in games, or any medium, but it feels like there is a double standard applied to games when compared to movies or other creative works.
Target and Kmart are free to pull whatever they want from their store shelves and for any reason or no reason at all, but it’s disappointing that no matter what the medium or subject matter is, people can’t keep their opinions to themselves and let individuals make their own decision. I guess if you want the freedom to have that type of content though, the nay sayers should have the freedom to detest it.
At the end of the day this news really doesn’t mean much for videogames. There are other retailers who will continue to sell GTAV in Australia, and I wouldn’t be surprised if when the next Grand Theft Auto comes out you will be able to find it in both of those stores.
Ouya founder Julie Uhrman announced today in an interview with Polygon that the console will be launching in Target stores across the United States.
According to Uhrman, “what is the most exciting is how we’ve been embraced by retail…when we launched in June we were live in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. We launched with GameStop, Target, Best Buy and GAME. This month we are going full chain with Target.”
The console has been subject to massive consumer backlash, with many publications calling the console “disappointing”. When asked about this, Uhrman said “there were some absolutely unacceptable things that we just didn’t, we didn’t see regardless of the amount of testing we’d done…but we haven’t had a software outage. We haven’t had a major bug that made the system unplayable. We haven’t had it accidentally release credit card information.”
While it has not been confirmed for Canada yet, it is assumed that the console will eventually expand to us.