Adventuron Content License Question

So, I’m currently entered in a game jam and wanted to use Adventuron to code my text adventure entry. I’ve decided to make a horror game.

My dilemma comes up when talking about the content limitations in the license agreement. Now, my game doesn’t have sexual or hateful content, but it does feature a couple dead bodies and some descriptions of body horror (missing limbs, open ribcages, demons getting stabbed, things like that).

My first instinct was to categorize those scenes as “adult content” and write a content warning on the title screen of the game. However, thinking about it more, I began to wonder if body horror delved more into “grossly offensive material” territory.

I know this is INCREDIBLY nuanced, but I’m one of those people that has to know they’re following the rules before doing anything, so I figured it’d be better to ask ahead of time. Anyway, any thoughts would be appreciated! Just trying to make a fun horror experience without taking things too far. :smiley:

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If nothing else, you’ve made me scurry away and read said licence agreement! (Of course, I knew it was there all along…)

I wouldn’t have thought that such standard horror tropes could be branded ‘grossly offensive’, otherwise nobody would be able to use Adventuron to make, for instance, a serious halloween game (I won’t define ‘grossly offensive’ but I know it when I see it, as someone once famously said). But I’d be interested to know if that is a wrong assumption.

Do other authoring systems have similar stipulations I wonder?

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I’m not aware of any. Such restrictions make me uncomfortable, to be honest. Art has a long and fine tradition of being grossly offensive, at least to some people.

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“Grossly offensive material” appears to be a term of art in British criminal law, going back to a prohibition on sending such material through the mails – it’s now applied online as well. I am not an expert on British law (I do have a US law degree, though I don’t practice), so take this all with a grain of salt. From a quick Google it looks like there doesn’t appear to be a commonly-accepted specific definition, but it’s primarily used to denote messages that are targeted to a particular person, with an intent to, or at least the knowledge of a risk of, grossly insulting the audience. To give you a flavor, the two most recent high-profile cases I found cited involved someone making very directed racist comments to specific people, and someone sending photos of aborted fetuses to abortion clinic workers (this, and most of what I’m sharing, are from this helpful Law Commission report).

There do appear to be some cases where a non-targeted message (e.g. a tweet) can fall afoul of the violation, but those appear to be threats, and again, intent is a required component of the offense. This is a criminal law, so the bar should be relatively high!

Again, not an expert on this and this is certainly not legal advice, but my read would be that this is boilerplate inserted into the license to make sure works created with Adventuron aren’t used as part of a criminal offense, and I don’t think this provision has any application to the kind of horror material you’re thinking about including.

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I’d say that your game as described falls under adult content, and therefore if you label it as such at the start of the game, it should be fine.

All these conditions are really about protecting myself as sole author in case someone really wants to make something truly awful with adventuron.

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Wait… So Adventuron has say over what content you can create with it? I understand for stuff hosted on your site, but once in HTML form you should be completely free of all responsibility regarding content. If not, Microsoft and Bic would have been sued a million times over for the content created with the things they allowed the public to use.

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It is their system but a good reason to use an alternative.

Censorship is a bad practice no matter the source.

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My only minor side note is the phrasing: “Adult Content” usually tends to imply “adult” in the sense of sexuality or pornography, whereas “Mature Content” is a bit less loaded and makes sense for everything including violence.

It’s always better, of course, to specify “Includes some violent content and adult language…” or whatever.

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Coming back to my own question after a LITERAL month, because I thought I responded to all of these when I first saw them, but I guess . . . I didn’t. I am not only a clown; I am also the whole circus.

Thank you to everyone who wrote a response to my question! I read them, enjoyed them, and learned a lot from them! I honestly didn’t think I’d get so much engagement from one question!

Glad I could give you a nice refresher :wink:

Just wanted to specifically thank you for looking into this for me! It was very kind of you! :pleading_face:

Totally makes sense. Thanks for getting back to me on this! It means a lot :blush:

Great point! I’ll be sure to include this! :pray:

Agreed. The reader has the right to stop reading. And that’s it.

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