ladbible logo

To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Popular noughties video game was banned from UK shops after backlash from parents

Popular noughties video game was banned from UK shops after backlash from parents

The game sold more than a million copies

A once-popular video game was banned from shops in the mid-2000s due to its violent content.

The game had more than its fair share of violence, and, as such, was released with a 15 certificate in the UK.

The Millennials amongst us may remember Rockstar Games’ 2006 game, a single-player, open world game which centred on protagonist, Jimmy Hopkins. Hopkins was packed off to Bullworth Academy boarding school, where he attempted to rise through the ranks of the school system to put an end to bullying once and for all.

I am, of course, talking about Bully.

Bully, which was also released under the name Canis Canem Edit - Latin for dog eat dog, was a commercial success selling more than 1.5 million copies.

However, in a slightly unusual move, British retailer Currys PC World decided against flogging the game in its stores, saying that it was not in keeping with its ‘family friendly’ image.

Hamish Thompson, a spokesperson from DSG International, the parent company of Curry PC World, told BBC at the time that it was a ‘very unusual move’.

He told the outlet: "We took a view that because it touches on a sensitive issue - violence in school - that it is not a product we would stock.

"We are committed to a good working relationship with Rockstar Games and will continue to stock all of its other titles.”

Rockstar Games’ Bully caused quite a controversy when it was launched.
Rockstar Games

The company had previously removed Hitman and Manhunt.

Thompson added: "We decided to take them off our shelves. There was a lot of tabloid focus on them. With Hitman, there were religious sensitivities.”

Former Labour MP Keith Vaz called on the government to raise the age certification on Bully to 18 - or ban the game altogether.

Liz Carnell, director of the charity Bullying Online supported a ban, telling the BBC in 2005: "Our view is that bullying is not a joke. It is not a suitable subject for computer games."

Bully faced calls to be banned altogether.
Rockstar Games

In response Rockstar Games said: "We support and admire the groups who are working hard to address the long-standing problem of bullying.

"We all have different opinions about art and entertainment, but everyone agrees that real-life school violence is a serious issue which lacks easy answers.

"Bully is still a work-in-progress, but when it's finished we believe most people will agree it offers an exciting experience and tells an engaging story.

"More and more people are beginning to recognise that the stories in video games have as many themes and plotlines as books and movies.

"Just as books aren't judged by their covers, video games shouldn't be judged by their titles or individual scenes."

Featured Image Credit: Rockstar Games

Topics: Gaming, UK News, GTA