Some of these games on this list are in actual fact very much illegal games to play, for the most part – in the rest of the world, they’re just straight-up banned or not distributed by official channels, although you can still get your hands on them.
Top 5 illegal games
Following are illegal games that you cannot play are:
Kicking off at Number 5 – we have Postal 2. Released in 2003 – as the synonymous sequel to 1997’s original Postal – this game labels itself as a black comedy first-person shooter video game, from creators Running With Scissors.
Now – in all fairness, the reason this game’s at Number 5 is because – I’m personally unsure whether it deserved such backlash. Yeah – it’s bad. It’s in poor taste, but the creators of the game clearly marketed it as a niche game, with the tagline “it’s only as violent as you are.”
Nevertheless – in 2004, New Zealand banned the game due to its gross and abhorrent content, with Australia soon joining the suit, banning it due to excessive abhorrent content. It went on to be banned in Malaysia, Germany, and Sweden – although some of them would be later rescinded.
In the game, you play the role of the Postal Dude, an everyday run-of-the-mill trailer park denizen, who has to complete a certain number of tasks as peacefully – or violently chaotic as the player chooses. Religious cults, cannibalistic butchers, al-Qaeda- Gary Coleman, it’s got it all.
Coming in at Number 4 – Standoff. Yeah – this game just sucks. Standoff – previously titled Active Shooter- was developed by Russian video game creator Anton Makarevskiy and publisher Ata Berdiyev. In my opinion – it’s a game in incredibly poor taste, lack of foresight – and just a straight-up terrible title.
The game depicts a school shooting, where the player takes the role of either an active shooter or a SWAT member responding to the event. Players have an arsenal of guns, grenades, or knives, and a civilian and police death tally that racks up on the screen.
The game attracted some serious controversy in May of 2018 after parents of the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting victims campaigned against the game online – a petition which attracted 100’000 signatures by the time of the cancellation of the game through Steam.
Valve, the company behind Steam, later went on to update its publishing policy, and called the game’s creator – a troll, with a history of customer abuse, publishing copyrighted material, and user review manipulation.
Next up at Number 3 – Hatred. If we’re talking pure disturbing content, then Hatred is pretty high up on this list. Developed and published as the debut release for Destructive Creations, a studio based in Poland – Hatred introduces the player as a misanthropic mass-killing sociopath – on a genocide crusade to kill as many human beings as possible.
To say this game was controversial is a little bit of an understatement. The developers described Hatred as a reaction to video game aesthetic trends, political correctness – politeness, vivid color – and games as art. Which – in a way, I’m all for – you can have light without some dark. But – these guys just totally missed the mark.
The sake of being disturbing and shocking for the sake of being disturbing and shocking doesn’t really give you the precedence to create offensive material, without the outline of some kind of wider message.
Which this game doesn’t have. It’s just continuous violent murder wrapped up in a crappy game. Its soundtrack is pretty decent, though.
Coming in next at Number 2 – Sad Satan. Now – this game is a little bit of an enigma, and pretty damn creepy nonetheless.
First picked up on the YouTube channel, ObscureHorror Corner in June 2015, it was initially thought to be a promotional stunt to up the popularity of the channel – which, undeniably worked – but then things got a little bit real. Built on the Terror Engine, and developed by an unknown source, Sad Satan was reportedly downloaded to the internet through the Tor network via a deep web internet forum.
It was referred to by a forum user known only as ZK, and then later released to 4chan by someone claiming to be the same user – claiming that people needed to witness the true version of the game. What exactly does it contain then? Well – not a whole lot of anything, other than gore and other disturbing images from the dark places of the internet.
The player walks down a monochromatic corridor, as audio recordings of various murderers such as Charles Manson and Tsutomu Miyazaki are played. Real images of murder and beheadings pop up-and creepy child statues follow the player’s movement. It’s bizarre, it’s weird – and if someone did create it as a release to the deep web, then it’s even weirder.
And finally, at our Number 1 spot – Manhunt2. This list wouldn’t be complete without the most controversially banned game in history.
The sequel to Manhunt, which – I’ve actually played, and is a pretty bleak game – Manhunt 2 was released in 2007 by Rockstar Games.
The game actually has a pretty great storyline, but it’s the execution of its content that got the public riled up. You play as Daniel Lamb, a patient at DixmorAsylum who wakes up with amnesia – who is accompanied by Leo Kasper, a sociopathic assassin who guides Daniel on his journey.
The reception of the game was mixed, to say the least. In the UK – it caused outrage as the first manhunt had been inaccurately connected to a murder case in 2004, and certain politicians were enraged at the thought of a sequel.
As US Senator at the time, Hillary Clinton, amongst others – described the game as visceral and casually sadistic, and it was outright refused to be given a rate by the BBFC.
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