A 40-year-old man in Tokyo was arrested recently for threatening Square Enix with a "repeat" of the arson attack that killed 35 people at Kyoto Animation on July 18.
The man, named Kenichi Hiratsuka, allegedly sent the threats through Square Enix's website. He was seemingly angry about an unnamed game and was seeking a refund. "Give me back my money from your sh*t game," he reportedly wrote. "Do you want a repeat of Kyoto Animation?" (Translation via SiliconEra.)
Hiratsuka was arrested by the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department on July 23, mere days after the Kyoto Animation attacks. "I was pissed off at losing in a game, so I sent the mail," he allegedly said when questioned by the police.
This isn't the first instance of Square Enix receiving threats from disgruntled customers over games. Gacha games are particularly inflammatory. Last spring, a 25-year-old man from the town of Yoshinogawa in Tokushima Prefecture reportedly threatened to kill Square Enix employees after he spent 200,000 yen (approximately $1,900 USD) on a gacha game that didn't yield the item he wanted. "So I sent the email to take revenge," the man told police.
Gacha mechanics in games don't exactly bring out the best side in anyone but threatening Square Enix with a repeat of the Kyoto Animation tragedy is especially tasteless. On July 18, a 41-year-old man named Shinji Aoba entered the celebrated animation studio and ignited 10 liters of gasoline. 35 people died in the subsequent blaze. Though police have yet to release an official word on the arsonist's motive, there are reports Aoba believes his own creative work was plagiarized.