Illegal immigrant-smuggling game rejected by Apple

“An iPhone game that allows users to drive a truck full of immigrants through the desert while trying to prevent them from getting thrown out of the vehicle has been rejected by Apple Inc., the software’s developer announced Thursday,” Russell Contreras reports for The Associated Press.

“Owlchemy Labs, the Boston company that developed ‘Smuggle Truck: Operation Immigration,’ said that the Apple App Store turned down the game three weeks ago, but it did accept the company’s ‘Snuggle Truck’ app, a game that allows players to ‘bring cute animals from the wilderness to the comfort of a zoo,'” Contreras reports.

“Owlchemy Labs Developer Alex Schwartz said the immigration game’s rejection was ‘content-related’ but couldn’t give details based on a contractual agreement,” Contreras reports.

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41 Comments

    1. Hell yeah let it go to Android!

      I’m going to install this thing right next to “Nose Candy” another fine entertainment title that is a bit too much ‘think different’ for Apple INC to handle! 😉

  1. It’s okay to kill pygmies on some fictitious island, but to traffic in illegal immigrants, which might hurt relations with Mexico or China is bad joojoo. Too close to real headlines.

  2. I wonder if they would approve a “secure the border” app, where you build fences, capture illegals, and earn points to hire more border guards when you catch Al Qaeda members, drug smugglers, and sex traffickers.

  3. I don’t think it should have been rejected the first time. In the US, people crossing the border from Mexico is a hot-button issue and this game is a humorous take on it. If comedians, filmmakers and cartoonists can joke about the issue why should games developers not have the same freedom?

    1. The freedom you mention protects the individual from prosecution, and gives them the right to develop the concept, build a game and market it on their own.

      It does not force Apple to take part in it.

      Having said that, I know the app approval system could use some improvement, and I don’t see why Apple couldn’t just put an age restriction on the application and let it through.
      But in the end, they built it, so it’s their choice….

  4. I think it’s funny that one version of their game is called “Snuggle Truck” and the other is called “Smuggle Truck.”

    > a game that allows players to ‘bring cute animals from the wilderness to the comfort of a zoo

    I think Snuggle Truck’s premise is even MORE annoying. Apple should go back and reject it too…

  5. “Owlchemy Labs Developer Alex Schwartz said the immigration game’s rejection was ‘content-related’ but couldn’t give details”

    Hey, why not try a game about child trafficing? How about a pimp and ho game! Or I know, a game about roping in kids to deliver dope and collecting money? Or how about a game where you start a gang of high school kids, pay them to rob houses, then sell their loot on your fencing website? (0_o)

    Someone is putting lead into US water…

    1. How about books, television shows or movies about pimps and drug dealers? They are out there and some of them, like The Wire and Breaking Bad are award-winning. You can’t say that a game should not exist just because you are easily offended by its subject matter. Games are creative endeavours just as much as any other medium.

      1. Both excellent shows. But see my comment above. He is allowed to create a game like that. But Apple can choose what they offer in the marketplace they’ve built. Like thousands of other books/movies,etc… if the publisher isn’t interested, market it elsewhere.

        BTW: Don’t forget the movie ‘The Aristocrats’ (which I think is even available on iTunes, and shouldn’t be confused with the Disney movie having a similar name). It’s probably the most vulgar, repulsive, offensive, and incorrect movie I’ve ever seen. (which I quite enjoyed)

      2. “You can’t say that a game should not exist just because you are easily offended by its subject matter.”

        So you’re NOT offended by immigrant-smuggling or any of the equally offensive games I brainstormed. Making playful games out of offensive behavior does not disturb you. Why?

        I know! How about a creative endeavor about how to perpetrate religious genocide! Oh that’s been done already. It’s called ‘Mein Kampf’ by Adolph Hitler. Hey, why not make a game out of it!

    1. Nothing. It’s deadly serious. Especially for poor people with no hope for a better life but to cross miles of desert on foot and only hope they dont get turned back by a cold hearted rich mans world. Or worse, that some racist asshole doesn’t shoot them first. No, not funny at all.

      1. Oh, please. Why is it our responsibility? Those actually paying for these people are NOT RICH. Taxpayers can’t even afford the U.S. poor we ALREADY have. So we import MORE? Common sense has to start at some point. The money is not magically created and endlessly supplied to help all these people. Most of the people this rescue money actually comes from have 2 jobs: one to support our own families and one to support the U.S. poor and the illegals with backbreaking taxes.

        1. You are correct MacRaven but it’s even more than this. The illegal problem is multi-leveled and probably more nuanced than the average Fredo-type mentality appreciates:

          1. Allowing in illegals with impunity undermines the concept that America is a nation of laws. For example, how about if we just let corporations dump chemicals in rivers again like they used to? Why is a law against that worth enforcing while other critical laws should be ignored? Overlooking obvious law-breaking encourages other kinds of law-breaking. If Americans want a flood of Mexicans coming into the country then they should encourage their Congressional representatives to change the immigration laws rather than just pretend the laws don’t exist.

          2. MacRaven’s point that we can’t afford to feed, house, educate, and provide health care for these teeming masses is the obvious practical problem with allowing it. The current immigration laws allow a certain number of immigrants to enter legally, based upon our ability to assimilate them and our system to handle them. Maybe these laws should be updated to allow more Mexican immigrants but that doesn’t change the fact that illegals are overwhelming our social care systems. They either take American jobs (which are in short supply these days) or they can’t get jobs and fall back on our social care system. How is either beneficial to the average American taxpayer?

          3. The more nuanced issue is that allowing millions of Mexican illegals across the border is an enabling behavior that keeps the people of Mexico from reforming their corrupt socialist/crony capitalist system. As long as Mexico is allowed to use America as a relief valve for the more industrious of its native populace to escape, then there will be no pressure for the government to change and things will only get worse for those who can’t cross the border. The citizens of Mexico need to rise up and change their country rather than abandoning it.

          4. The injustice of it all. Mexicans crossing the border illegally put themselves to the front of the line in front of those who seek to come here legally. This is fundamentally unjust. The Left is always crying about “justice” but then totally ignores the concept when it comes to screwing over LEGAL immigrants.

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