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Apple rejects iOS game about war in Syria

Endgame: Syria, a mobile game created to raise awareness about the ongoing struggle in Syria, won't be coming to Apple devices.

Developer Auroch Digital said today that Apple has rejected the game. It remains available on Android devices and is also on the official website. The game was rejected by Apple because it violated a guideline that forbids games that "solely target a specific race, culture, a real government or corporation, or any other real entity."

"This decision is a shame really as it makes it hard to talk about the real world," developer Tomas Rawlings said in a prepared statement. "We had hoped that Apple would be more nuanced in how they applied this rule but we got a bit worried when it had been in submission for around two weeks without a decision — we then figured that because of the controversy of using the gaming medium to cover an ongoing war meant passing the game had become an issue for them.

"Our aim is to use games as a format to bring news to a new audience and submission processes such as this do make it a lot harder for us. I get that Apple want to make sure really offensive titles don't pass into their store, but ours is far from that."

Rawlings says the team plans to make changes to the game and re-submit it to Apple. Unfortunately, he adds, that means some of the game's meaning and context will also be stripped away.

Rawlings and his team have been creating news games at GameTheNews.Net for several months. Other works on the site include games that tackle subjects like child labor in Uzebekistan, rhino poaching in Africa and Freedom of Information laws. .

Apple officials did not respond to request for comment.

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