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TARTAN ARMY FURY AT GAME; Scot Sniffer leads virtual footy yobs.

A NEW computer football game which depicts the Tartan Army as violent thugs has outraged Scots fans.

Hooligans: Storm Over Europe, shows armed thugs on the rampage before matches on the continent.

One of the most evil characters is Glaswegian Sniffer, who pops up during the game saying "Who you looking at? Eh? Eh?"

DarXabre, the Dutch makers, of the game based Sniffer on Glasgow plumber Tom Glancy, who they saw in a Dutch bar.

But they say far from attacking the Tartan Army, Sniffer gives the game authenticity, because of the city's reputation for hardmen.

The game, due out this week, lets players assemble Europe's most violent gang by killing and maiming police and opposing fans.

The mobs - which come armed with grenades and guns - can be made to glass rivals, loot shops, torch buildings and wreck cars.

DarXabre boss Jason Garber said the game encouraged strategic thinking, not anti-social behaviour.

He added: "It is ridiculous to suggest people will act violently after playing the game.

"The game is not for real hooligans - it's just a game.

"It is nowhere near as violent as many films and people don't object to those."

And he insisted the game was not a slur against the Tartan Army, saying: "Scots fans are well-behaved when they're abroad but so are many other countries' fans.

"We use Sniffer in the game, but if you don't want a Scots side you can choose another country, but I think Scots fans will be some of our best customers."

But Tommy Madden, president of the West of Scotland Tartan Army, called for a boycott of the game.

He said: "It's a cheek to tar us with the same brush as violent elements of English and Dutch fans. We gave up hooliganism a long time ago."

The Government also slammed the game. A Home Office spokes-man said: "We think the makers are acting wholly irresponsibly."
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Dec 13, 2001
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