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Rockstar wins Manhunt 2 appeal in UK

By Matt Martin

Mon 10 Dec 2007 4:01pm GMT / 11:01am EST / 8:01am PST

VAC rejects BBFC banning

Rockstar Games has won its appeal against the BBFC's decision to refuse classification to Manhunt 2 in the UK.

Last month the BBFC and Rockstar went head-to-head in a heated debate over the game, which the BBFC had effectively banned from sale.

The Video Appeals Committee decided by four votes to three in favour of Rockstar. The BBFC is currently considering its options, which include either granting the game an 18 rating, or further pursuing a ban by taking the game to the High Court.

"We won't make a decision until we've seen the full printed judgement, which we're expecting this week," Sue Clark, spokesperson for the BBFC told

"There are few options open to us - we can go to the High Court to appeal the decision - but we'll be making a further statement when we've seen the full report."

Rockstar Games has issued a short statement, stating: "We are committed to making great interactive entertainment, while also marketing our products responsibly and supporting an effective rating system."

"We are pleased that the decision of the VAC has recognised that Manhunt 2 is well within the bounds established by other 18+ rated entertainment."

The publisher has not yet revealed its intentions for releasing the game in the UK.

"The BBFC twice rejected Manhunt 2 for its focus on varied and cumulative killings," commented David Cooke, director of the BBFC.

"We recognise that rejection is a very serious step, in which the desire of publishers to market their games, and that of gamers to buy them, must be balanced against the public interest, including the full range of possible harm risks to vulnerable individuals and to any children who may be wrongly exposed to such games."

"Such balancing judgements are inevitably complex and multi-faceted, and are made only after very careful consideration of the contents of a work."

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