Mom who took down ‘Active Shooter’ game says more should be done: ‘I’m honestly disappointed’

MERCER ISLAND, Wash. — The Bellevue-based video game publisher Valve said it is dropping the “Active Shooter” game that would have allowed a player to take on the role of a gunman in school.

But the Mercer Island mom who started a Change.org petition calling for the game’s removal said she’s disappointed in the response from the publisher, and expected a bit more.

“I’m honestly disappointed in the statement they gave,” Stephanie Robinett said. “It was focused on the bad activity on the developer, not as much on the content of the game.”

Robinett started the Change.org petition calling on Valve Corporation to ban the game. By Tuesday, the petition had more than 150,000 signatures.

"Active Shooter" was scheduled to be available June 6 on Steam, a popular platform where players can buy and download thousands of games. On Tuesday afternoon, Valve sent Q13 News a statement saying it has removed the developer responsible for the game from Steam.

It went on to describe that person as a "troll with a history of customer abuse, publishing copyrighted material, and user review manipulation."

"The broader conversation about Steam's content policies is one that we'll be addressing soon," the Valve statement said.

Robinett said Valve has a history of taking down other video games, only to put them back up again later. She pointed to the video game "Hatred" which allowed players to act out mass killings. She said Valve took the game down at first, but then put it back once the public outcry had died down.

"I hope that doesn't happen here," Robinett said, comparing the treatment of "Hatred" to "Active Shooter."

Robinett hopes to take some of the momentum gained from the Change.org petition to help prevent school shootings. She may team up with another Mercer Island resident to start programs that would help prevent school shootings, she said.

Despite the comment from Valve, Robinett is happy the game isn't available for purchase now.

"I'm really happy with how that turned out," Robinett said.

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