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Ready or Not school shooting level was not reason for losing publisher

Void Interactive, developers of the tactical shooter game Ready or Not, claim that their divorce from publisher Team17 was not connected to the controversial school shooting level.
Ready or Not school shooting level was not reason for losing publisher
Earlier this week, Void Interactive responded to a Reddit thread, confirming that a school shooting setting would be used as a basis for an upcoming campaign level in their latest tactical shooter game, Ready or Not.

Despite the game mainly receiving favourable ratings from thousands of players on Steam, the controversial school level announcement was met with massive backlash from fans, who deemed their decision insensitive. Moreover, the announcement came just a day before the company officially revealed their divorce with publisher Team17.

The timing of the divorce resulted in many people suspecting that the school level was a significant determinant leading to the publisher's departure. However, the company recently denounced those claims, saying that the school level controversy had nothing to do with their split from Team17.

Ready or Not devs comment on school shooting level controversy

On 20th December, Void Interactive issued a tweet announcing that they were parting with publisher Team17, citing that the decision was "mutually agreed" upon; however, the game development studio failed to provide a reason for the split.

The split was arguably fueled by Void Interactive's decision to maintain a somewhat controversial "school shooting level," which many suspected did not sit well with Team17.

More recently, however, Void Interactive denounced previous claims and clarified that their divorce with Team17 was not connected to the school level at all, issuing a public statement addressing the issue on Twitter.

Void Interactive issue statement regarding Ready or Not school shooting level
Void Interactive issue statement regarding Ready or Not school shooting level. (Picture: Twitter / Void Interactive)

Excerpts from the statement read, "At its core, the game honours the work of dedicated law enforcement officers across the world and in no way intends to glorify cowardly criminal acts. We are dedicated to promoting a level of authenticity and realism in our videogame, Ready or Not, that carries with it difficult subject matter."

The company continued, adding that the school level "is not just a part of Ready or Not's story, it is part of the fabric of thousands of people's stories worldwide. It is the story of those who have died too soon at the hands of a deranged gunman, the story of family and friends waiting for a phone call that might never come, the story of the first responders who do everything they can only for it not to be enough."

ready or not school shooting level
Ready or Not developers confirm school level was not connected to their divorce from Team17. (Picture: Void Interactive)

"It is a look at an uncomfortable reality that has become all too common, and we hope that we can play some small part in honouring those who have been impacted by these real-world tragedies with a portrayal that does not trivialize their experiences."

At present, there is no school level in Ready or Not. However, PC Gamer writer Andy Chalk noted that if such a level were to exist, "players will presumably be intervening in a shooting, not committing it." Given Void Interactive's stance on the subject matter, I would certainly agree.

The game is currently available on Early Access on Steam.

 

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Featured image courtesy of Void Interactive.