Remember how Australia was supposed to be reforming its system of game classification to something a bit more sensible? So it would no longer effectively ban games with "mature" themes and subject matter? To cut down on all the needless censorship?
Ha ha, too bad!
JoystiqThe Australian Classification Board made Saints Row 4 the first game to be refused classification in the country since the introduction of the R18+ rating at the start of the year. In a statement released this morning, the ACB said it classified the game "RC (Refused Classification)" in accordance with the new guidelines. Publisher Deep Silver told us developer Volition is reworking the game's content for the territory.
"In the Board's opinion, Saints Row IV, includes interactive, visual depictions of implied sexual violence which are not justified by context," reads the ACB's statement. "In addition, the game includes elements of illicit or proscribed drug use related to incentives or rewards. Such depictions are prohibited by the computer games guidelines."
(That "implied sexual violence" bit? Referring to an alien anal probe. Of course, Destroy All Humans had an anal probe gun and was not refused classification, but hey, consistency is hard.)
Undead Labs ForumsHola Australian State of Decay fans,
I have bad news to share: State of Decay has been refused classification by the Australian Classification Board (ACB). We've run afoul of certain prohibitions regarding the depiction of drug use. We're working with Microsoft to come up with options, including changing names of certain medications in the game to comply with ratings requirements. Whatever our path forward, it's going to take a bit.
I know this is frustrating — believe me, we're frustrated too — but each country has the right to set its own rules about content, and it's our responsibility to comply with them. Rest assured we'll do everything we can to find a way to get the game into your hands. Stay tuned.
I guess the Australian ratings board is in a State of Decay all its own.
Australia has had a long history of banning games or forcing developers to censor their vision in order to see release (ranging from Fallout 3 to Left 4 Dead 2 and beyond). It seems like the government was trying to step away from this past, but just when I thought they were out, they pull themselves back in.
So continued video game censorship, some of the most dangerous animals known to man, and harsh, inhospitable deserts. Sheesh, Australia, get it together!