An upcoming game on Steam is publicly condemned for allowing players to run a school shooting.
The game called "Active Shooter" lets you take on the role of the attacker or a SWAT team member in various scenarios, one of which involves a school. As an attacker, you can kill innocent civilians and police or kill them with a knife or grenade.
Active Shooter is ready for a June 7 release, but parents of school shooters are outraged and call Steam
"This company should face the wrath of everyone who cares about school and public safety and it should start immediately " tweeted Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter Jamie was shot dead in Parkland High School In a tweet Ryan Petty, the parent of another student killed in Parkland, called the game" despicable ". Even US Sen. Bill Nelson weighed and said the developers of Active Shooter should be ashamed.
Sneering. Get to know @steam_games games that depict "active shooter" scenarios in schools where players shoot civilians, students and law enforcement agencies are unacceptable. https://t.co/7utMvVqYzT
– Ryan Petty (@ rpetty) May 27, 2018
So far, Steam owner Valve has not commented on the controversy. But the developer behind Active Shooter, Acid, is thinking about dropping the shooting scenario from the upcoming title.
"Since this game show is live, I was stormed by accusations and fierce critics from around the world," Acid wrote in a post on Steam last week.
Acid, which seems to be from Russia, said the game was originally intended as a "SWAT simulator," but later decided to add more gameplay elements, including the option to be the shooter or a civilian. Acid also noted that Steam offers many other violent games, some of which also kill innocent civilians.
Nonetheless, the developer said, "After receiving so many critics and hate, I'll rather remove the shooter's role in this game by publishing it, unless it can be held as it is."  Acid has not confirmed if the shooting scenario is dropped. But on Monday it was mentioned that a new "Zombie Survival" mode would come into play.
In the meantime, worried parents started an online petition on Change.org and demanded that Steam deal with the distribution of the game. On Tuesday, the petition had more than 105,000 signatures.
Earlier this year, Gizmodo reported that the US Army and Homeland Security department had developed a simulation game that should help teachers in preparing for an active shooter situation. The program, known as Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment (EDGE), was originally developed for law enforcement agencies and fire departments, but was updated this year to include teacher training.