The blood-drenched world of Minecraft is too much for kids, says Turkey’s Family and Social Policies Ministry.
The organization investigated the game as a result of its popularity and found that the game “encourages children to resort to violence,” according to a report from Hurriyet Daily News.
While you and I know Minecraft is primarily a game about building things out of cubes, there’s also a survival mode that has monsters coming out at night, forcing the player to either take shelter or defend themselves.
According to the Ministry, some children may confuse the real world with the game world and torture animals (presumably by hitting them with a stick until they turn into a plucked chicken or cut of beef), believing that they do not understand that they are causing the animals pain.
It’s also suggested that the game could lead to either ‘social isolation’ when played offline or bullying when played online.
As GamesBeat notes, Turkey has a history of banning websites, but not of banning games. Games like Grand Theft Auto V continue to be sold there. It sounds like this is more along the lines of the social scares that come up every time something is popular with kids, whether it’s Pokémon, Harry Potter, or whatever else. Interestingly, the report was spurred by a probe to find out whether the game encouraged violence against women. While the game’s main character is considered male, pretty much everything else in the game is ungendered, making that a curious inquiry.
If the Turkish court agrees with the Ministry, the ban would be instated by blocking Minecraft.net, to which access is required to play the game.