Well we knew it would happen, it was just a question of when. In fact, we’re surprised it lasted this long. Weed Firm, a game about growing and selling marijuana that managed to become the number one, free game on the App Store and has just been pulled down.
According to Manitoba, the game’s creators, “This was entirely Apple’s decision, not ours.”
What is strange though is that other games with the same ‘illegal’ theme have been left on the App Store. The theory given on Manitoba’s website is:
“We guess the problem was that the game was just too good and got to number one in All Categories, since there are certainly a great number of weed based apps still available, as well as games promoting other so-called ‘illegal activities’ such as shooting people, crashing cars and throwing birds at buildings.”
While it’s clear that Apple does not want such a game in the top spot, singling out this one based on its popularity is confusing. Other games with weed themes like Weed Tycoon and a game similar to Weed Firm called Weed Farmer still remain in the App Store.
What seems to be happening here is that Apple is using a specific section of its guidelines to enforce this rejection, that being section 16.1, which states “apps that present excessively objectionable or crude content will be rejected.”
Since more and more younger children are now playing games from the App Store, it’s likely that they want to censor a game that is so popular to avoid the children getting their hands on it. But like the folks at Manitoba say:
“We do not want kids playing Weed Firm, but we firmly believe that adults should have a choice to do whatever the hell they want as long as they are not hurting anybody in the process.”
Good luck to them and hope to see them back in the App Store soon!