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Australian classification body bans Saints Row IV

Saints Row IV has been refused classification in Australia, barring it from release in its current form. However, publisher Deep Silver has told us that developer Volition is making alterations to offending content in a bid to secure a release in the country.

Australia's ratings body said in a statement: "In the Board's opinion, Saints Row IV includes interactive, visual depictions of implied sexual violence which are not justified by context. 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."

The game is the first to be denied a rating under Australia’s Guidelines for the Classification of Computer Games, which came into effect on January 1 2013. Prior to that, the country didn’t have an adult category for computer games. Donald McDonald, acting director of the Classification Board, said: "Apart from today's decision, since the beginning of the year, the Board has classified 17 games R 18+ under the new guidelines."

Deep Silver said in a statement today: "Volition, the developer, are reworking some of the code to create a version of the game for this territory by removing the content which could cause offence without reducing the outlandish gameplay that Saints Row fans know and love. Saints Row IV has been awarded PEGI 18 and ESRB M ratings where fans can enjoy their time in Steelport as originally intended."

Saints Row 4 is set for release on August 20 in North America and August 23 in Europe. Get our most recent impressions of the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC game in this preview from E3 earlier this month.

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8 comments

  • g1rldraco7 - June 26, 2013 4:52 a.m.

    This is the same country that punishes people by kicking them with a big ass boot? Bloody kangaroos
  • Tranquilbez34 - June 25, 2013 5:05 p.m.

    Fuck this! I really looking forward to this! fuck this country's ratings, this just makes me worried that they'll do the same thing to GTA 5
  • Demon_Krauser - June 25, 2013 9:14 a.m.

    Is it just me or does Australia have the most insane video game rating system?
  • taokaka - June 25, 2013 8:04 a.m.

    This is exactly why I was never too fussed about getting an R18+ rating here because I predicted that in reality it most likely meant the top end of MA15+ games would just get moved up to being R rated and artistic censorship would still be a problem. Sure we finally got mortal kombat (and that's all the good we're getting out of it) but lets look at other R rated games, in particular lets look at God of war ascension and Atelier totori plus. GoW:A is possibly the tamest GoW yet, there's no implied sex scene and nothing anywhere near as graphical as simultaneously clicking L3 and R3 to jab your fingers in somebody's eyes, yet it is the only game in the series to get an R rating just because the option was there. And Atelier totori plus is a port of a PG rated ps3 game to vita but with a demonic, vile, cancerous addition ......................... OPTIONAL SWIMSUIT DLC!!!!!!! You see the problem is the characters are under 18 so it makes perfect sense that people the same age as the characters can't perv on them but older people are allowed to because logic. But seriously, WTF!!!!!! Why does having swimsuit DLC make it R18+? Anyway I'm sorry for going off on a tangent and I'm going to stop before I ramble on more. TL;DR: The R18+ rating in Australia was a waste of time.
  • Shinn - June 25, 2013 8:02 a.m.

    I hope this doesn't mean New Zealand gets the watered down version of the game too. We've already ruled that the game is perfectly fine in its current state, and it really ticks me off when publishers stick us with the edited game just because we're close to Australia.
  • Swedish_Chef - June 25, 2013 6:52 a.m.

    Welcome to Australia, where we have an R18+ rating and it doesn't matter. God I absolutely hate this country sometimes...
  • Sy87 - June 25, 2013 7:27 a.m.

    That blows. You can still import even though its a pain in the ass.
  • Bloodstorm - June 25, 2013 6:37 a.m.

    So they make an 18+ rating, but they still filter out content?

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