Mortal Kombat is the latest game to be "banned" in Australia

The Australian government has denied classification to this year's upcoming Mortal Kombat game. Games without classification are effectively banned in the country. Retailers cannot sell them, and all pre-orders for the game will be canceled.

Due to the lack of an R18+ rating for games, many violent titles that are too extreme for the highest game rating of MA15+ are refused classification. Warner Brothers said in an official statement, “We are extremely disappointed that Mortal Kombat, one of the world's oldest and most successful video games franchises, will not be available to mature Australian gamers.”

It's possible MK could still make it through - Warner Bros was able to appeal for an MA15+ rating for FEAR 2, which was then released without censorship. Conversely, titles like Left 4 Dead 2 had to be altered to fit the MA15+ rating. MK without excessive blood and fatalities is a no-go, so we don't expect Warner Bros to take that path.

Any of our readers affected by this and other similar "banned" games in Australia? Are you thankful your government is thinking of you when it bans a medium it rarely takes part in?

[Source: IGN Australia]


  • Hai-Shi - March 8, 2011 1:08 p.m.

    Great to live in kangaroos here...and no game bans.
  • mrzombie - March 1, 2011 1:36 p.m.

    sadly our australian government is too busy in shambles fighting over seats in parliament to deal with things the country really want, the notion of an r18+ in games was brought up but sadly set aside as a state wide election is coming up and every politician and his dog want a seat and wont take notice of anything else until its done...and the stupid esrb decides decapitation in a game is worthy of an r18+ rating but a chick getting raped in a film is ma15+ at best, i support a ratings system...but where is the logic in a rating system that differs from movies and games. Some people out there have absolutely no brain at all
  • Rivenscry - March 1, 2011 12:48 p.m.

    Oy, what's with all of the bashing for me and my countrymen? Not all, but it's actually really hurtful, like such: "stop this Australia, we gamers are not retarded and were not all 5 year old boys please begin realising that you dont need to babysit your population." "God of War 3 is arguably even bloodier (more realistic gore anyway) with some random and completely unnecessary topless women thrown in for good measure. And now this gets banned yet that doesn't? For shame, Australia. Forgetting such important things..." Granted, thanks for all the support from the people with half a brain, but how do you think we feel? Certain people in our government are the reason that Left 4 Dead 2 was watered down so extremely and we've missed out on so much gaming content over the years because we are the only first-world country without an adults-only rating for games. Hell, even our film industry has an R18+ rating to go with it. I mean really, why could we have Fallout 3 (with its gratuitous slow-mo and buckets of blood) but we can't have an x-ray punch to the face? It isn't even all of our government, just the people that hold the real power who feel this way. Oh and by the way, how is the lack of an adults-only rating in Australia affecting New Zealand (which is a completely different country, mind you) at all even in the least bit? New Zealand has an 18+ rating, but we don't. This sucks. P.s. They're called prawns, not shrimp. We only call them that for tourists. So there, suck it.
  • Bya - March 1, 2011 11:25 a.m.

    Meh, I don't really care either. MVC3 is more than enough to satisfy my fighting game needs :D
  • zander15 - March 1, 2011 10:27 a.m.

    I live in Australia and don't really care- importing is cheaper than buying in store
  • JetpackJesus - March 1, 2011 10:03 a.m.

    I don't mean to rub it in anyone's face, but THANK FUCK I do not live in Australia. You may not have MK, but at least you have Alf Stewart.
  • Lolspamm0r - March 1, 2011 4:56 a.m.

    Dammit, i was looking forward to it.
  • iSeeDeadKittens - March 1, 2011 3:07 a.m.

    Speaking as an Australian citizen and avid fan of this series, I'm totally outraged about all of this nonsense! Video games don't promote violence any further than movies and television! Our government needs to pull their heads out of wherever they've shoved them, not just in regards to mere ratings. This country's gone to shit.
  • Cloudlv6 - March 1, 2011 2:22 a.m.

    Online shopping is so common these days. They can't just have it mailed to them from an online store (amazon, ebay)? Sure it takes longer but easier than fighting a government that obviously can't see reason when it come to this matter. BTW I love Australia, I would love to live there even with this limitation.
  • GHOST3o0o - March 1, 2011 2:18 a.m.

    God dammit damn australian goverment fucking it up for people in New Zealand.
  • jesuschristsuperfap - March 1, 2011 1 a.m.

    an island settled by criminals that doesnt like violence.... rediculous
  • 510BrotherPanda - February 28, 2011 10:02 p.m.

    " of the world's oldest and most successful video games franchises" Silly Warner Bros... MK wasn't ever the MOST successful, and it's not the OLDEST... it was mostly an infamously bloody game from the '90s that was halfway-decent. Still, that sucks for Australia. Again.
  • Larinah - February 28, 2011 10 p.m.

    My question is this. If they made an r18+ rating, would that include the numerous games that get AO ratings in the US? That's probably what is stopping them. I'm not familiar with Australia's laws on pornographic content but if they made that rating and the legal age to view was 18 as well, they'd be unleashing a floodgate of questionable material. Either way, I feel sorry for the guys out there, because come on, it's MK! Everyone knows MK, right?
  • chriszewski - February 28, 2011 9:42 p.m.

    I see this as a good thing in terms of the franchise's return to its roots *cough*MKVSDC*cough*, but cmon Australia. Time to add a classification or two. You just published a study performed by the govt that there appears to be no correlation between violent media and violent behavior, or something along those lines anyway. I feel bad for the Aussies that are deprived of playing a game with its unaltered release content, but from what i hear they have workarounds for that (other than piracy).
  • And_ROOS - February 28, 2011 9:09 p.m.

    The best thing is, in Australia at the moment we have retailers having a cry over Aussies buying online from overseas. But stuff like this means i have to buy games i want untampered from another country because if Mortal Kombat is to be released it will be nerfed like L4D2 was. Hmm, pay more for a game that had to be edited or pay less for a foreign copy of the game that runs just as well and is left as it should be. Hard choice.
  • WrathLord03 - February 28, 2011 9:01 p.m.

    God of War 3 is arguably even bloodier (more realistic gore anyway) with some random and completely unnecessary topless women thrown in for good measure. And now this gets banned yet that doesn't? For shame, Australia. Forgetting such important things...
  • g4m3rk1dd - February 28, 2011 8:59 p.m.

    sucks to be Australia right now...
  • therawski - February 28, 2011 8:38 p.m.

    "Australia's eastern half was claimed by Britain in 1770 and initially settled through penal transportation to the colony of New South Wales, formally founded on 7 February 1788" So it doesn't surprise me they run the place like a prison.
  • jackthemenace - February 28, 2011 8:30 p.m.

    When i lived there it didn't really bother me that there wasn't an R18+ for games, but playing as i do now, if i were to move back i couldn't survive without 'em. I'm still wondering as to WHY they havent introduced an R18+ rating yet, since there don't seem to be any downsides, only benefits?
  • TheElephantManchurianCandidate - February 28, 2011 8:28 p.m.

    This is terrible if I lived there I would move asap.

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