And Yet, I Love You, an indie game developed for Xbox LIVE Indie Games Marketplace, has been pulled for being "too erotic".
The text heavy visual novel was developed by Japanese independent dev Naoki Sagawa and contains no actual sex scenes. It is not an adult game.
Sagawa was contacted by Microsoft Europe who stated that game contained three "visual reminders of sexual assault" — or basically innuendo. They are:
• One of the girl's hands is restrained. (The other is not.)
• The girl is being pushed down.
• The girl's underwear is visible.
In order to appease Microsoft Europe, Sagawa asked that his game be limited to Japan only distribution and even altered the scene to appease Microsoft Europe. However, Microsoft threatened to delete the game and suspend Sagawa's account if distribution did not cease. And like that, the 240 Microsoft Point game was still barred from Indie Games Marketplace.
The Xbox LIVE Indie Games developers are not beholden merely to the rules of their region, but those of regions far, far away. If Microsoft Europe finds it unacceptable, then the title should be banned in Europe — not everywhere. Ah, the joys of digital distribution!
What's more, if Microsoft Europe finds content like this unacceptable, it might want to review titles like Dead or Alive in which players can punch and kick scantily clad females. Ninjas or not, is Microsoft Europe okay with beating up women?
Picking and choosing is fun!