Thanks to RandomBullseye for getting me to write this
I'm not sure how many know but the upcoming mortal kombat is banned in Australia, now this is only technically true. Upon review to the Australian Classification Board, it was refused classification as there was no proper way to categorize it within the current rating the ACB has at its disposal. To put it simply IF they have the R+18 rating they could have used it, but they donít all other media that is classified by the ACB has it but games simply donít have the rating,
Here are the current ratings they can issue to films, tv, dvds games, except, the two in black donít apply to games, to many its confusing, its like having 3 cars that work fine but one doesnít have headlights you theoretically could get headlights for it, but don't. As far as I can see there is no reason NOT to have it, I recall someone (former premier for South Australia Michael Atkinson) saying having it cut off at the MA15 rating was to protect the youngins So limiting the very system that was put in place to regulate such media and protect them in the first place is protecting them more?
The system isnít perfect that we can be sure of that; an example of this is the case of Alien vs. Predator, initially refused classification as the board couldnít rate it in the first place, if you look at the game, yes it should be an R18,
I was informed by Australian Gamerís Matt Burgess (not personally) that the games engine or skins what have you were fine tuned so that you could see skin ripping as you ripped someoneís head off, while impressive from a technical standpoint is also horrifying from a visual standpoint.
But then again thatís what is game is trying to be, instilling shock and awe and the general feeling of ďdude did you see that, oh my good that was grossĒ while playing, if thatís what the game does so be it, I donít mind, but the ACB did, and it was refused classification since basically it couldnít. However oddly enough after simply reapply the games to the board, it was accepted, with no edits or changes at all to the game, it was downgraded to the MA15 rating instead. It was deemed acceptable as it was in a sci-fi setting.
"The violence is fantastical in nature and justified by the context of the game, set in a futuristic science-fiction world, inhabited by aliens and predators," the Board said.
Then what of Mortal Kombat? Its obviously more fantastical due to the high level fantasy elements such as magic, monsters and different dimensional planes. Its fair to debate that that AvP is closer to home as its simply set in the future, but MK9 is further away from reality as we can expect. But other games that were refused classification are edited for other reasons as well. Fallout for its drug references and L4D2 for the copious blood and guts it contained. Have a look between the two versions of L4D2
The rating is there for a reason and its simply not being put to use, donít think ďits banned because its goryĒ, no its banned because it canít be classified and it can't be classified because.....
therefore it cannot be sold, therefore it is banned, an ouroboros of government and departmental mismanagement..
And now with recent announcements made that games that have been refused classification are now on the list of good prohibited in Australia, the standard stuff is on their, pocket knives, fireworks and narcotics are just as illegal to own/be in possession of as Mortal Komnbat and Deadly Premonition, customs have said they will seize any copy that is send via mail, bought online or simply brought into the country, with fines up to $110,000 for offenders it kinda doesnít seem worth it?
But there is hope, as I have an idea
No retail purchase, imports, of bringing it from out of the country, but what about downloads? Xbox Liveís games on demand service ( I donít know if Sony does something similar) could put Microsoft in the good books of Australian gamers for years o come, they would be the only way to buy the game, only people with XBL accounts could buy it, only those with credit cards could buy it (you canít use points with games on deamand) and due to the technicalities of EULA and digital distribution, we would not own the game,
Only a license to play it.
Using EULA for good, I must say Iíve outdone myself.
Tell me what you think please, I know this was rather poorly written but then again this is a first attempt
(not a first draft). And if you like my idea for it being digital only could infact work in some crazy way let others know, in fact let Microsoft, Sony, Warner Brothers and Netherrealm know.
Thank you for reading my first Destructoid C-blog, I hope you liked it!
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