Ubisoft's Mind Quiz was pulled from shelves today after a mother of a child with cerebral palsy complained about the game calling her a "spastic" when she didn't score well, reports the BBC.
The mother, whose name was only given as Nicola, told the BBC that she had been playing the game as a way to pass the time during a recuperation period in hospital following the birth of her second son, Austin. Nicola said that she had recently lost her first son, Logan, who suffered from cerebral palsy and was brain damaged, to pneumonia.
The woman said, "I thought it was absolutely appalling that a word like this should be used to describe someone who has not achieved very well. My daddy also has cerebral palsy and he is in his mid-50s and this is a word that really offends my dad."
While the word isn't quite so incindiary in the US, it is generally considered highly offensive in the UK. Ubisoft, the publishers of the game, confirmed to GameSpot that immediately after it was made aware of the complaint, production of Mind Quiz was stopped and the game was being pulled from shelves. A Ubisoft spokesperson told GameSpot, "Ubisoft sincerely apologises to anyone who has been offended by the game. ... The game was developed in Japan, and we unfortunately did not pick up on the offending word in our quality assurance. We are currently working with the developer to find a way to rectify the issue."
Mind Quiz, released in the UK for the PlayStation Portable and Nintendo DS, is one in a series of many titles in the popular "brain training" genre, the first of which was Dr Kawashima's Brain Training: How Old Is Your Brain? (Brain Age in the US) in 2006. The genre tasks gamers to reduce their Brain Age by undertaking a series of arithmetic and other mental exercises, including sudoku puzzles.