Facebook reportedly removed its first-person virtual-reality shooting game from the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) — Wednesday through Saturday — due to concerns of insensitivity following the recent shooting in Parkland, Fla.
The social media company was planning on offering the political event attendees the opportunity to play its ultra-realistic video game but decided against it, because it believes it’s too close to the mass shooting that left 17 people murdered at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
“There is a standard set of experiences included in the Oculus demos we feature at public events,” said Hugo Barra, Facebook’s vice president of virtual reality, according to Variety. “A few of the action games can include violence. In light of the recent events in Florida and out of respect for the victims and their families, we have removed them from this demo. We regret that we failed to do so in the first place.”
Popular software-developer Epic Games created the game, “Bullet Train,” for the Oculus VR platform — a subsidiary of Facebook. (RELATED: Facebook Virtual-Reality-Branch Founder Dumped A Bunch Of Money Into Trump’s Inauguration)
“Thanks to Unreal Engine technology and the Oculus Touch motion controllers,” the video game description avails, “you can physically interact with an array of weapons — from guns to grenades to missiles — and even feel them through haptic feedback.”
Facebook may be intentionally cautious over how its virtual-reality projects are perceived. Founder Mark Zuckerberg received a lot of blame when he showcased similar technology that allowed him to artificially explore Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria ravaged the land. Many purported at the time that optics were bad, and the whole live-stream event was in poor taste.
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