IARC - Survival Island 3: Australia (2015)


 

 

 

 

Survival Island 3: Australia

Publisher & Production Company: GFTEAM
MA15+ (Strong Violence): 8/12/2015
PG (Mild Violence): 11/12/2015
MA15+ (Strong Violence): 16/01/2016
aka Survival Island 3 – Australia Story 3D

This game has never been banned under the IARC system. It is included because it was a controversial title.

 

On December 8th 2015, SURVIVAL ISLAND 3: AUSTRALIA was rated MA15+ (Strong violence) under the IARC system. Three days later, it was classified again with a PG (Mild violence) rating.

 

Survival Island 3: Australia - Android - Gameplay
15 Dec, 2015, YouTube.com

Description : Survival Island 3: Australia By GFTEAM
Australia is the world's largest island, and also one of the most dangerous places in the world. No, there are no wars or other disaster, but there are a lot of aggressive animals, who will be happy to eat you for lunch. This time you’re a lonely traveler in Australia. You haven’t booked the hotel and now you have to survive in wilderness. Survival Island 3: Australia – tame a wild nature!

Your goal is to survive. Beware of angry animals, especially if you don’t have any weapon. At nights there is really dangerous, try to hide somewhere. In your own house, for example. Hunt animals or grow plants – you have to eat something. You also have to fight with aboriginals - you invaded their home!

Survival Island 3: Australia
GAME FEATURES: - Real trip to Australia; - Island survival simulator; - Kangaroo, crocodile and other animals; - Meet real aboriginals; - Houses building; - Great craft system; - The march of day and night; - A lot of activities to do; - FREE.

Survival Island 3: Australia game is your ticket to the world of extreme adventures. It will be unforgettable experience, so just enjoy!

 

 

The controversy begins...

On January 15th 2016, Chris Graham wrote the following article. The R2 Darksaber YouTube channel that is referred to in the article was taken down by its creator on January 16th.

Bludgeon To Death An ‘Aborigine’: The Virtual Apple iPhone Game The Whole Family Can Play
15 Jan, 2016, newmatilda.com

Just when you think humanity couldn’t get anymore offensive… a newly released app on the Apple iTunes stores – rated for children aged 12 years and up – allows players to beat to death an ‘Aborigine’ during their quest to survive on the Australian continent.

Most remarkably, Apple has rated the game PG, for kids aged 12+. The bludgeoning to death of a ‘virtual Aborigine’ earns itself a warning of “Infrequent/Mild Realistic violence”.

Helpfully, a Youtube player calling himself ‘R2 Darksaber‘ has already dived in and provided an online review of the game – a series of five videos which give a walkthrough of how to play.

In the fourth video in the series, ‘R2 Darksaber’ notes he’s “searching for the natives"before beating to death an Aboriginal man with a stone axe.

He then asks “OK, what do we get?"when a screen pops up to reveal the loot he wins as a result of the killing.

In the fifth video, ‘R2Darksaber’ remarks: “This lost tribe have forgiven me for killing one of their members. They said that they were going to kill him anyway. He was a bit of a dopey ass causing trouble all the time and they said that their place was a bit overcrowded anyway. They said I can actually join them and build a little home.."

At a scene where Aboriginal men are running everywhere, R2Darksaber adds: “This place is just crawl… holy crap, well anyway, they said they’re gonna teach me how to throw boomerangs and stuff and how to hunt."

New Matilda is seeking comment from Apple and the developer overnight.

 

 

Petition launched

Killing Indigenous Australians is not a game!
Georgia Mantle, Sydney, Australia
15 Jan, 2016, change.org

Dear NIL Entertainment and App Stores,

Selling games that promote racism and negative stereotypes of Indigenous Australians is not acceptable!

'Survival Island 3- Australia Story 3D', is a game available on a number of App Stores, developed by NIL Entertainment, that promotes violence towards Australia’s Indigenous people by allowing and even encouraging the players to kill Indigenous Australians.

The game shamelessly promotes the fact that you will “have to fight with aboriginals"and uses warning messages like, “Beware of Aborigines!"when Indigenous people appear on screen. The game portrays Indigenous Australian’s as violent and aggressive. As well as trying to promote the Indigenous characters as authentic representations of a diverse culture through the description phrasing, “Meet real aboriginals”.

Indigenous Australians face daily racism and discrimination. Indigenous Australians are over policed and continue to die at the hands of the state. This app further perpetuates the denial of Indigenous Australians humanity. It associates us with flora and fauna of the Australian landscape.

By shooting ‘dangerous Aboriginals’, this app makes us inhuman, it re-enforces racial violence, lack of punishment for white people taking black lives, it makes fun and sport of massacres and Frontier violence. This App is another colonialist frontier and continues to exploit the deaths of many Aboriginal people without regard to the trauma that it instigates.

The profiting of historical genocide and introducing these genocides as entertainment completely disregards the continual suffering of our people.

Sign this petition to take a stand against racism towards Indigenous Australians and to demand that this racist game be pulled with an apology from NIL Entertainment for its racist conduct. The App Stores that sold this app and its developers should be held accountable for not only promoting racism but profiting off it.

Killing Indigenous Australians is not a game!

 

 

MA15+ rating confirmed under the International Age Rating Coalition (IARC)

On January 16th, the day after the controversy began, SURVIVAL ISLAND 3: AUSTRALIA was again rated MA15+ (Strong violence) under the IARC system.

This confirmed that the game was not banned in Australia.

 

 

Apple and Google drop the game

VICTORY!
Georgia Mantle, Sydney, Australia
16 Jan, 2016, change.org

16.01.2016 — Wow! I started this petition after being disgusted that Apple and Google would feature this disgusting app on their App Store - and woke to find it had gained over 20,000 supporters over night, and that number just kept growing!

With your help, I am thrilled to announce that this terrible game has been removed from the Apple App Store and from Google Play! We did it!

I would like to thank everyone who signed this petition and for taking a stand against racism. The fact is racism is very much a reality in this country especially towards Indigenous Australians.

We are yet to receive a statement from either the Apple App Store or Google Play which I find disappointing as this is not something that can just be swept under the rug. I hope that these companies can acknowledge why this game was so problematic to ensure that nothing like this happens again.

I also hope that the game developers use this petition to guide the way in which they approach game development in the future.

The swift removal of this game proves that grassroots campaigns and online petitions really do work and can create real change.

Thanks!
Georgia

 

 

Survival Island 3: Game that purportedly calls for players to kill Aboriginal people prompts outrage
16 Jan, 2016, abc.com.au

A video game that appears to encourage players to kill Indigenous Australians has been removed from Google Play and iTunes after an online petition attracted more than 60,000 signatures condemning the game.
Key points:

The petition was started by Gadigal woman Georgia Mantle who raised concerns that it required players to survive in the Australian outback and rewarded them with weapons and food for killing Aboriginal people.

"What this is doing is making entertainment out of the murder of people based on their race," Ms Mantle told the ABC.

"Why would you allow an app that is so blatantly racist and promotes racist violence to be hosted on your sites?"

A spokeswoman for Google said it would not comment on individual apps, but added that the company removes applications that violate their policies.

Communications Minister Mitch Fifield said he had asked for more information on the circumstances of the game's release.

"I am appalled that anyone would develop such a so-called 'game' and that any platform would carry it," he said in a statement.

"I have asked my department to provide advice on the circumstances of its release and to review and advise in relation to any other games by the same developer."

 

 

Media panic and misinformation

Media Outlets Lie About Survival Island 3; Game Gets Pulled From iTunes, Google
15 Jan, 2016, blogjob.com/oneangrygamer

The “Beware of Aborigines!" line is from the app store page, along with the “New Weapon” line, both of which are used on the promotional screenshots but don’t actually appear in the game. In fact when you craft a weapon it’s simply added to your inventory, as evidenced in a video of Survival Island 2 (which is identical to Survival Island 3 save for the name and location). It does not say “New Weapon".

...the Aboriginal NPCs are standard NPCs and can either be friendly or hostile depending on the player’s actions but it doesn’t say “Beware of Aborigines" when they’re on screen. This is also evidenced in a video from Andrei Plugaru, where no warning messages pop up when the Aborigines appear.

It’s true that the game allows you to survive in Australia and it also allows you to kill non-player characters in the game, ranging from animals to people. However, it’s a survival simulator and everything and everyone the player kills is done by choice. Despite Player Attack calling for the game to be censored and banned, they still admit that players can either join with the Aborigines or fight against them.

In fact, the official trailer doesn’t even mention the Aborigines, it focuses on farming, resource gathering and hunting animals for food.

The Aborigines appear in the game at some point and players will be able to choose to work with them or fight against them, depending on the player’s choices and play-style; it’s not unlike every other sandbox simulator out there.

However, majority of the game focuses on the player surviving in the wild, alone.

Basically, we’re seeing a narrative in the making here no different than what happened with #GamerGate, where the media have cooked up a panic based on misinformation. Yes, there are Aborigines in the game and yes they can be killed. The modifier worth noting is “can", as in, a choice. It’s no different than choosing to kill cops or civilians in GTA V, or choosing to kill zombies or other humans in DayZ, or choosing to kill any and everyone in Fallout 4 and Skyrim.

It’s becoming frightening for the gaming industry, seeing as how lies from the media and the lack of fact checking can lead to a game being banned based on misconceptions.

And if we’re going to start pulling games because players can choose to kill certain NPCs in that game, we may as well start pulling every game where you can choose to kill a black person, an Asian person, a Hispanic person or a woman.

 

 

Amazon drops the game

Amazon still selling racist app!
Georgia Mantle, Sydney, Australia
18 Jan, 2016, change.org

18.01.2016 — It’s so outrageous - I have just found out that the ‘Survival Island’ game that encourages the killing of indigenous people for points is still being sold on Amazon!

Over the weekend, with the help of almost 85,000 of you who signed this petition, we managed to get Apple and Google to take down the ‘Survival Island’ racist app from their app stores!

Let’s get Amazon to urgently remove the app from its site too - please continue to share this petition with friends and family.

Thanks again.
Georgia

 

Win! Amazon removes racist ’Survival Island’ game
Georgia Mantle, Sydney, Australia
19 Jan, 2016, change.org

19.01.2016— In less than 24 hours after seeing the ‘Survival Island’ game was still being sold on Amazon, it has been removed. Thanks to everyone who emailed Amazon yesterday to make this happen!

It’s so good to see people power taking on big corporations and winning - I would love to see more listening to the public like Apple, Google and Amazon has. I’m sure there’s tonnes of issues out there that need to be tackled so if you want something changed - just head to Change.org/start-a-petition and share your ideas.

Thanks again for helping to get these games removed.
Georgia

 

 

Over the weekend, 19-year-old Aboriginal woman Georgia Mantle spotted a game called Survival Island 3
19 Jan, 2016, abc.com.au

It’s this encouragement to kill Indigenous Australians that got Georgia Mantle - and almost 100,000 others like her - fired up. Georgia launched a petition online calling for the app to be pulled from online stores.

“I saw [Survival Island 3] and obviously I was just completely disgusted, but also just really surprised that this existed,"Georgia tells Hack .

“The first thing I saw was a screenshot of the description page with the picture that said, 'beware of Aborigines'.

“That image alone was enough to spark a lot of anger in me."

However, some have pointed out that the screenshot - telling players to be aware of, or 'kill' 'Aborigines' - doesn’t actually appear in the gameplay.

Campaigner Georgia Mantle says she knows that text doesn’t appear in the actual game - but says the game is still problematic; least of all because it refers to Indigenous Australians as Aborigines.

Rae Johnston, an Aboriginal woman and games writer for Gizmodo, agrees that the killing of Aboriginal people in Survival Island 3 isn’t the only thing wrong with the game.

“The killing component is one aspect of it - it’s something that is quite common in many video games to kill lots of people from different cultures.

 

Survival Island 3: Australia (2015) - Published by GFTEAM


 

 

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