The Sims has been banned in seven highly conservative countries - from China to Oman
Fans were told the game was being axed in some places 'in light of regional standards'.
THE Sims has been banned in SEVEN countries - apparently because it allows characters to have same-sex relationships.
The video game developer informed fans online The Sims FreePlay wouldn't be available in a number of famously conservative countries "in light of regional standards".
The Sims has not clarified exactly what these standards were - but experts have interpreted it as being down to the game allowing gay relationships and marriages.
From July 5, users in China, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Egypt will no longer be able to access new games.
The life-simulation game was founded in 2000 and enables users to live a parallel, virtual existence.
Characters have autonomy over what they do, what they eat, and how they conduct their love lives.
Men can even get pregnant on Sims - but it seems the programme is too liberal for a number of countries
Beijing-based video game expert Duan Juncheng told Global Times: "Considering that the other six countries named in the statement are countries where a great majority of people regard gays and lesbians as criminals, the game's LGBT content might be the reason behind the removal."
It's not the first time gay Sims characters have caused controversy.
The Conversation explored how under 18s were banned from using the game in Russia in 2014, after their 436-FX law was amended to protect minors from "propaganda of non-traditional sexual relationships".
The article describes how every Sim is technically bisexual - and can fall in love and "WooHoo" with an adult Sim from either gender.
A screenshot shows the game is being banned in seven countries 'in light of regional standards'
Since 2009 gay characters have been able to propose to each other on some versions of the app - several years ahead of the legalisation of gay marriage in reality in countries like the UK, US and Germany.
But The Sims has already reportedly been removed from app stores in China.
According to shanghaiist - which speculates whether Sims is "too gay" for China - those who have already downloaded it will be able to continue to use it but they will not be able to do updates or purchase anything in the future.
Although it is not a crime to be homosexual in China, gay content is banned on TV and online.
A Sims spokesman said: "We’ve always been proud that our in-game experiences embrace values as broad and diverse as our incredible Sims community.
"This has been important to us, as we know it is to you."