This is why Manhunt 2 was banned

As you've no doubt read this morning, Manhunt 2 has been rejected (opens in new tab) by the BBFC - meaning that no one outside of Rockstar will ever play the game. Except, that is, our magazine comrades at UK NGamer, who bagged the world's first review of the Wii and PS2 splatterfest.

The highly positive review, which awarded Manhunt 2 a score of 92%, appears in the latest issue of NGamer, out tomorrow for the UK. So we've scoured it for some key excerpts that might explain why the BBFC has been left feeling sickly over Rockstar's sequel.

The violence
NGamer says:

"The astonishing level of brutality is an integral part of the experience..."

"[Manhunt combines] the tense stealth elements of Splinter Cell with the crowd-pleasing fatalities of Mortal Kombat, wrapped up in a story that's a little bit of Second Sight, a little bit of Hostel and a whole lot of unsettling..."

"Manhunt 2 is a unique treat for adult gamers with strong stomachs..."

"We've deliberately avoided talking about the game's more grisly excesses because these things are best discovered for yourself..."

"Once [an execution] is over, you can drag the remains - at least, the bits you can clear up without a shovel and mop - into the shadows..."

The controls
NGamer says:

"The motion controls put you in Daniel's shoes in a way that simply holding a releasing a button cannot..."

"Each execution has several stages, activated by a chopping motion, or a prod, or a slam to the floor, or a sawing movement..."

"Executions are much more physical with the Wii controls, and we found we felt more immersed in the game world thanks to them..."

The locations
NGamer says:

"The journey to the Project's labs takes in some truly rancid locations..."

"... a torture dungeon beneath a fetishists' nightclub and a porn theatre in which you fight while an adult movie plays on the big screen..."

The impact
NGamer says:

"A lot of people are going to be offended by it, for its copious violence and occasional sex scene..."

"Somebody, somewhere is going to get a shock when they walk in on a friend laterally bisecting a hunter's head with realistic sawing motions..."

"Manhunt 2 is what Wii's parental controls are for..."

"In its own bloody way, it's an example of the '30 seconds of fun' gaming ethos popularized by Bungie's Halo, slowed down and stretched out into stealth and horror..."

June 19, 2007

Ben Richardson is a former Staff Writer for Official PlayStation 2 magazine and a former Content Editor of GamesRadar+. In the years since Ben left GR, he has worked as a columnist, communications officer, charity coach, and podcast host – but we still look back to his news stories from time to time, they are a window into a different era of video games.