Fallout 3 facing ban in Australia?

By Justin Mann on July 9, 2008, 12:29 PM
Every once in a while, a game comes along that is so offensive to one particular country or another that it faces severe restrictions or outright banning, much to the chagrin of potential loyal gamers within the borders of said country. We've seen it with the GTA series in the U.S., with Manhunt II in the U.K. and now with the upcoming and eagerly anticipated title, Fallout 3. This time, a ban of sorts is happening in Australia.

It seems that the “Office of Film and Literature Classification” in Australia, similar to the ESRB, has refused to classify the title. As a result, it is illegal for the title to be sold in that region. The reason for the refusal? No one has confirmed the reasoning yet – but if you have ever been a fan of the Fallout series, you know that the game is rife with vices and potential violence that could even put GTA IV to shame. Fallout 2, for instance, ended up being released with a special European version that lacked children, due to concerns over violence.

I hope Bethesda can work things out and get the title released in Australia, but I also hope they do not let arbitrary rating boards compromise the integrity of their game. It has a lot to live up to, and it will be much harder to live up to if they cave into demands to censor or restrict gameplay. That said, bans have been almost universally ineffectual in the past, and if people want to play, they will play, regardless of where they live.

User Comments: 6

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JBMAC said:
I've never been a serious gamer, nor do I believe in public censorship, but I do believe designers/authors need to consider the possible damage/hurt to kids when making their video.
I think that if your worrying about your kids being damaged/hurt when the kid has got a game rated "M" in his hands then your obviously not doing your job as a PARENT. I hate people who have GOV positions and take it upon themselves to thrust their views and how things should be on the rest of society.
JBMAC said:
Afraid You've misunderstood me; I'm not a parent and hope I'm a responsible adult. The point I was trying to make is a general one;we all (you and me too) have to exercise a certain amount of choiceevery day and if we're producing stuff for other people, take them into the equation. It's a personal view though, and you're entitled to disagree with me, but why jump to those conclusions.
Julio said:
Where I believe the problem lies is the lack of transparency from governments when they seem to handpick a handful of titles for their bans, at times rendering useless the rating system.
TimeParadoX said:
What still surprises me is that people who complain about the game's content never really take into consideration the rating of the game. If it's rated "M" your 9 year old child should be no where near this game. When I was younger violent games started coming out ( like grand theft auto ) and when I tried to buy it myself I had to have my parents with me. Most of the time they enforce this so it's harder for someone who is very young to get a hold of a game that is rated mature. Although now and days you could see just as violent things on TV then videogames but yet you don't see Jack Thompson sueing SpikeTV for their show CSI.[Edited by TimeParadoX on 2008-07-09 16:06:20]
fullmetalvegan said:
Yeah, I completely disagree with producers have to censor what they produce - it takes away from the experience of the game. The very simple answer to it is for the parents to not let their kids play it, not expect other adults to suffer from a censored game because a producer has to protect your kids for you.Parents need to take responsibility, mass censorship isn't the answer.I loved the atmoshpere in Fallout where there were drug addicts everywhere and you could be one if you wanted, really made it feel like a post-apocalytic world.The reason for the ban has bee released too, it's because you can use drugs like morphine in it, and it's called the real name morphine, that you can get in game benefits from it that make you stronger, etc, so it's apparently encourging morphine use. Of course, Fallout does have drawbacks in the game where you end up getting fucked over cause you're addicted to them, so I can see that as being an incentive to someone to not take drugs IRL too.So basically, if Fallout rename Morphine to Morp Pine, and everything else is the same, then it's okay for approval.[Edited by fullmetalvegan on 2008-07-10 08:08:12]
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