updated 09:40 am EDT, Mon August 21, 2006
Reason for pre-order ban?
Though somewhat doubtable, there's suggestion on the part of GamePolitics that rather than coercion by Jack Thompson, it could be that June 14th's US House subcommittee on videogaming was responsible for the Wal-Mart decision to stop pre-orders on Bully. At one point during the committee's hearings, chair Cliff Stearns spoke directly to Wal-Mart executive Gary Severson. "I went, Mr. Severson, I went to the Wal-Mart website, where you sell Grand Theft Auto and it's rated 'M' there on the the website...(the website said) by ordering this item you are certifying that you are 17 years of age. If you agree to the above terms click 'I agree.' If you click, 'I agree,' you can get this pretty easily." He later drew a connection between online ordering and the Hot Coffee sex mod for GTA: San Andreas: "...you might stop selling the game, but just today I can go onto your website and get this (San Andreas) and I can have anybody agree (that they are of age). And bingo, they got the game and then they go to the other to get this (Hot Coffee mod)." The problem with the GamePolitics theory is that although you can no longer pre-order Bully, you can still order other unrated games from the Website. Clearly, Wal-Mart is in no hurry to pull all unrated games from the Website as promised.