Retailer Target has removed Grand Theft Auto 5 from sale in Australia due its depictions of violence against women.
The retailer issued a statement today claiming it has removed the game from sale due to feedback from its customers.
“We’ve been speaking to many customers over recent days about the game, and there is a significant level of concern about the game’s content,” said Jim Cooper, general manager of corporate affairs.
“We’ve also had customer feedback in support of us selling the game, and we respect their perspective on the issue.
“However, we feel the decision to stop selling GTA5 is in line with the majority view of our customers.”
Despite removing GTA 5 from sale, the retailer said it would continue to sell other R-rated content in stores, including DVDs and games.
“While these products often contain imagery that some customers find offensive, in the vast majority of cases, we believe they are appropriate products for us to sell to adult customers,” added Cooper.
“However, in the case of GTA5, we have listened to the strong feedback from customers that this is not a product they want us to sell.”
Update: Rockstar parent company Take-Two has responded to the decision with a statemen from CEO Strauss Zelnick.
“We are disappointed that an Australian retailer has chosen no longer to sell Grand Theft Auto 5 – a title that has won extraordinary critical acclaim and has been enjoyed by tens of millions of consumers around the world.
“Grand Theft Auto 5 explores mature themes and content similar to those found in many other popular and groundbreaking entertainment properties. Interactive entertainment is today’s most compelling art form and shares the same creative freedom as books, television, and movies. I stand behind our products, the people who create them, and the consumers who play them.”