The latest controversy is Tournament of Rapists.
|If you experience extreme discomfort, just look at this silly goat for a bit.|
It should be clear that the players in this game are supposed to take on the role of the heroes, who are uncovering this brutal underground fighting ring and opposing the aforementioned super-misogynists. Even with that caveat, though, the supplement sounds like a terrible fan fiction playing on a loop in the darkest depths of a teenage sex offenders subconscious after watching too much body horror and doing peyote. While there is a market for this kind of fetishization (if the listings on hentai sites are to be believed), the reaction to it being put into the RPG market has been violently negative. It has even led to reputable RPG stores striking the game from their archives, making it much harder to find or purchase. Beside Notepad has more information on the sale of the game and some of the details.
That should be the end of it, right?
The Defenders of The Game
To be clear, this game wasn't something like Pie Shop, where rape might be an element associated with a single character's psychosis, or a game like Shadow of The Demon Lord where visceral horrors should be expected. In those examples rape is an element that can show up in the mix. In Tournament of Rapists, rape is the entire point. Sure, it's being done by the apparent villains of the game, but it is a necessary and central part of the overall premise. If you exclude rape from the game, you take away part of the title.
|The goat required reinforcements.|
As callous and poorly-presented as the subject is, there are people who have risen from the muck and the murk to defend it. A game like this, they may argue, is a test of the community's tolerance and respect for the first amendment. In order to prove how loyal they are to their ideals, it's paramount that we let this thing exist. And besides, we're clearly misunderstanding that if a game's villains are horrible rapists, then it's okay to have it featured so prominently in the game.
That sounds like a straw man argument on my part, but check some of the 4Chan forums about it and you'll see opinions that aren't too far off. Let's be clear here: this game is repugnant. As a product it sends all the wrong messages. Messages which the gaming community at large has demanded to be stricken from the shelves.
Which is, pretty much, how the first amendment actually works in practice. The top slot on the bill of rights stops the government for punishing you for what you say. No one from homeland security is coming down on the game designer's head for this. The publisher created a product, and that product has come under heavy criticism from customers, which have demanded it be taken down. When customers aren't happy, they demand changes. RPG sellers want to keep customers happy, so they get rid of games with the word rapist in the title.