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Indie studio says it was refused insurance because it makes violent games

Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

An independent games developer said his studio was refused a liability insurance policy "due to the violent nature of the games you are producing."

Christian Allen, of Serellan yesterday shared an email from an insurance broker apologizing for being unable to find a insurer willing to underwrite the standard product liability insurance game developers carry for their products. "This is due to the violent nature of the games you are producing."

Allen said he was later able to find a policy, but the refusal "was a big shock and delayed some major bizdev stuff until I got it sorted." He said the refusal came through a broker, meaning more than one insurer declined the coverage.

Serellan's most recent release was Takedown: Red Sabre, a squad-based tactical shooter that launched in September 2013 for PC and in February for Xbox 360, after being successfully funded on Kickstarter. Serellan's current project is unannounced and unknown.

The issue of violence lurched back into the video games conversation this week when Kmart and Target's operations in Australia removed copies of Grand Theft Auto 5 from shelves, citing an online petition decrying violence against women. Allen shared a screenshot of the email from the broker in response to the latest controversy.

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