By Joe Sigadel / January 22nd, 2016
It’s with a heavy heart and no small amount of resentment that I have to be the one to report this story. I’ve spent almost a year here at oprainfall making cases for niche games from Senran Kagura: Estival Versus to Dead or Alive when they would come under attack from their detractors. This recent development with Twitch silently banning Yandere Simulator is all too familiar for me, as the one who openly challenged Twitch’s Estival Versus ban. Here’s Yandere Dev’s YouTube video describing the situation, uploaded as of a few minutes ago:
The circumstances are a bit different this time: Twitch quietly updated its publically viewable List of Prohibited Games to include Yandere Simulator, and I only found out about it when a viewer brought it to my attention while I was streaming Trails of Cold Steel. Naturally, I was quite displeased, especially after I found out by reading Yandere Dev’s Twitter that he was not informed of this himself and had to hear about it from a friend. Yandere Dev has sent out an e-mail to Twitch, choosing to wait 24 hours to see if they would respond to the matter. Out of courtesy, I decided to do the same, even offering to invite them to have a DM conversation with me on Twitter. This is why I’m talking about it about a day later, after all the other sites have said their piece. I should also mention that I’ve been streaming on Twitch for over 2 years now, which makes dealing with this news that much harder for me. When I wrote that piece about Estival Versus almost a year ago, I was hoping that there would be more transparency and communication over video game bans. A list of prohibited games is a good start, but it doesn’t seem to be enough.
Like many other broadcasters, I had plans to play it myself, and have seen the game in action from another streamer friend, as well as the highly entertaining game development videos Yandere Dev has posted on YouTube. I can’t pinpoint what about the game Twitch has deemed to be unfit for casting. Perhaps it’s the nature of Yandere Simulator itself. I’m sure some people might find a game where you play as a psychopathic yandere girl murdering her fellow students to be with her senpai to be offensive, much like how Hatred rubbed mainstream game journalists the wrong way with its concept of playing as a cold-blooded killer and reveling in it. I note that Postal 2 still hasn’t been banned. But that’s just my own speculation, and at the very least I think we should know what the reasoning is behind the decision (and while they’re at it, they could try explaining to us just what’s wrong with Criminal Girls as well). Yandere Dev has said that he hopes to be able to talk to @TwitchSupport in order to learn why it’s not streamable.
I’d like to invite you to watch Yandere Dev’s YouTube series on developing the game, so that you can judge for yourself whether Twitch made the right call. My hope is that both parties can come to a compromise, since it doesn’t seem like Twitch is going to allow it as-is. Failing that, I suppose I will have to look at alternative sites if I want to share my live gameplay of Yandere Simulator with others. If you want to go further and try the game for yourself, you may download it here.
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