Earlier today, Polish indie studio Destructive Creations revealed their semi-open world murder simulator, Hatred.
The game is powered by Unreal Engine 4, and due to that the logo for the engine was in the game’s trailer, featured above. This was apparently not okay, because Epic Games was not involved with the game’s development at all:
“Epic Games isn’t involved in this project. 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.”
Destructive Creations also issued a statement to Gamespot, in which they flatly said the game is pretty much only coming to PC, unless they find a publisher:
“Yes, we really plan to release this game publicly and for PC only,” the studio said. “We’re too small [a] team to develop it on any other platform at the moment. We really wish to release [a] digital version through Steam and GoG, but actually we have no idea if they will let us to do this, because of all the sh**storm the game is delivering. :) We really would like to find a publisher for retail version also, but it might be hard for the same reason.”
They weren’t exaggerating when they said the game is creating a shitstorm. The reaction many folks in the industry have, the majority of them pulled from Twitter, forums, etc are. all of revulsion and disgust, while headlines like “Epic Games distances itself from ultraviolent mass-murder game Hatred” are seen prominently on major gaming websites.
This is not a case of Epic Games not wanting to be associated with the game due to its content (many of their games are violent as well), but due to trademark issues with the use of the Unreal Engine 4 logo. That’s it. You could say the same thing with Destructive Creations using the NYPD logo and their likeness (the game is based in New York State), which I’m sure they might get contacted about.
It’s certainly a controversial type of game, but with the amount of games out there that let you murder hundreds, thousands of people (innocent or not), is it that far of a stretch of the imagination to allow someone to play as a literal mass-murderer? I suppose it’s all about the context and the portrayal of the killings, but what do you guys think about Hatred and the reaction it has been getting?