Update 5/19/18: According to HuniePop developer HuniePot on Twitter, Valve has reached out by email again to say their previous warning email should be disregarded. Valve apologized for the confusion, and said that they are in the process of re-reviewing if HuniePop actually violates any of Steam’s guidelines.
Mutiny!! developer Lupiesoft said that they also received a second message from Valve, and that the two-week deadline for them to censor content was no longer in place as Valve also re-reviews their game. It’s unclear how many of the other developers that were initially warned have received similar follow-ups.
Original Story: The developers of several popular erotic games on Steam have received warnings from Valve that they must censor the adult content in their games or they will be removed, according to tweets from those developers.
Most notably, developer HuniePot was issued a warning regarding their extremely popular erotic romance visual novel/puzzle game, HuniePop. According to their Twitter, the notice indicated that HuniePop “violates the rules & guidelines for pornographic content on Steam and will be removed from the store unless the game is updated to remove said content.”
Developers of many other games, including Mutiny!!, Re;Lord 1, Kindred Spirits on the Roof, Tropical Liquor, and VR Kanojo, all appear to have received similar statements, which effectively amount to a take down warning notice from Valve. Mutiny!! developer Lupiesoft said on Twitter their warning was issued due to “reports of pornographic content.”
What all of these games have in common is that they are romance-focused, Japanese or Japan-inspired games with erotic or suggestive content. Lupiesoft notes, however, that they have been very rigorous about making sure their releases adhere to Steam’s guidelines. Some of the games listed, such as Mutiny!!, have patches available outside of Steam that add uncensored content, but are not advertised on the platform.
MangaGamer, publisher of Kindred Spirits on the Roof, had this to say on their blog:
“As you may recall from our own announcements and coverage in several news outlets, we and many others in the industry considered the release of Kindred Spirits unaltered on the platform a positive shift in the treatment of tasteful, mature content on the platform. We stand by our assertion then that content of the game is not pornographic, but an earnest and tasteful exploration of sexuality.”
This sudden and sweeping action is surprising to many, as games like Kindred Spirits on the Roof and HuniePop have been on Steam for many years. However, more recent titles such as Re;Lord 1 have also been targeted, which was released in March of this year.
We’ve reached out to Valve for comment and will update this story when they respond.