“The Revolution of Our Times” is the latest casualty in the world of apps related to Hong Kong, and although it would seem as Google is bending the knee to the Chinese government, the Mountain View-based company said that the app was removed for trying to “capitalize on sensitive events”.
“The Revolution of Our Times” is a pro-Hong Kong game, and there is nothing inherently wrong with it – is just a text-based adventure where the player takes the role of a Hong Kong protester. The game allows the player to make choices that affect the city’s public opinion as well as its skills.
The game is still a work in progress and is the work of just one person.
The latest build of the app – which can no longer be downloaded from the Play Store – covers the protests until the end of June.
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Google removed the app for “capitalizing on sensitive events”
Users were quick to point out that the game is free and, as such, it shouldn’t qualify for removal. Although the app was indeed free to download, it featured in-app purchases that ranged from $0.99 to $14.99.
However, the developer of the app, who goes by the alias “Spinner of Yarns”, told news outlet Hong Kong Free Press that the purpose of the game was to “spark interest among ordinary overseas gamers for Hong Kong’s plight”.
On top of that, he mentioned that 80% of the game’s income was pledged to a fund for arrested protesters.
Nonetheless, the developer was suspended from the Google Play Store on October 8th without any prior notice. He has appealed the suspension already, but with no luck so far. Some users point out that removing the in-app purchases might do the trick… If the reasons stated by Google are to be believed, of course.
The Chinese government is actively suppressing all facts that mention Hong Kong (in addition to Taiwan and Macau), and has forced companies to have to follow this current of censorship if they want to keep trade agreements with the powerful nation.