Visual Novel Hello Good-bye was recently banned from Steam – despite Valve’s own pledge for allowing adult content on the platform and the game already being an All-Ages appropriate version.
Valve’s relationship with Visual Novels and adult games in general has been a wild ride. Initially some games were allowed to submit a non-Adults Only version of their game to Steam, then provide an adult patch separately on their own website. Eventually, developers were not even able to mention the existence of this patch on Steam.
In May 2018, Valve briefly began removing adult games from Steam, but soon clarified they were re-reviewing for a new user filtering system for adult content. In June, Valve declared that they allowed “everything” as long as it was not illegal or “trolling”. The filter system was explained in more detail in September.
Hello Good-bye is published and developed by Lump of Sugar, with NekoNyan publishing the all ages version. Steam Database (a “third-party tool […] made to give better insight into the applications and packages” from Steam) notes the game was removed on December 5th.
NekoNyan took to Twitter, saying: “Many of you guys have already noticed that the store page for “Hello Goodbye” has been deleted by @steam_games. This is NOT a technical problem as some of you have speculated. We have reached out to Valve for clarification.”
Four other Visual Novels have also been banned since the new filter implementation, however Valve cites the reasons for these games was due to it featuring or exploiting minors.