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Sega wins appeal against AvP ban in Australia

Game to be released in its entirety in country

Sega has won its appeal with Australia's Classification Board against the banning of Aliens Vs Predator meaning the game will be released in the country after all.

At the start of this month it emerged the game had become the latest to be refused classification in the country for not fitting the criteria for a 15+ age rating - the highest a game can be awarded there.

"The game contains first-person perspective, close-up depictions of human characters being subjected to various types of violence, including explicit decapitation and dismemberment as well as locational damage such as stabbing through the chest, mouth, throat or eyes," said the board's report.

And in a statement, Rebellion's Jason Kingsley said he agreed the game was unsuitable for non-adult players but was disappointed Australia's laws meant AvP could not be released there. A sanitised or cut down version would not be released, he added.

But Sega has won its appeal against the decision, meaning the original game will be released with a MA15+ rating. The game has received an 18 rating from the BBFC with advice that it contains "very strong bloody violence and gore and strong language".

"It is with great pleasure that we announce the success of our appeal," Sega Australia's general manager Darren MacBeth told Kotaku. "We are particularly proud that the game will be released in its original entirety, with no content altered or removed whatsoever. This is a big win for Australian gamers. We applaud the Classification Review Board on making a decision that clearly considers the context of the game, and is in line with the modern expectations of reasonable Australians".

Last week, Australia's Attorney General Michael Atkinson defended the decision to ban Aliens Vs Predator from release, saying: "You don't need to be playing a game in which you impale, decapitate and dismember people."

"I accept that 98 per cent, 99 per cent of gamers will tell the difference between fantasy and reality, but the one per cent to two per cent could go on to be motivated by these games to commit horrible acts of violence," he added.

Earlier this year, EA lost its appeal to release Left 4 Dead 2 in the country and a sanitised version of the game was released instead.

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Latest comments (2)

Antony Cain Lecturer, Teesside University11 years ago
There's always that 1-2% of Alien-hunting predators that ruin it for the rest of us
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Mat Bettinson Business Development Manager, Tantalus Media11 years ago
This is a perfect example of why the current scenario is actually worse for allowing adult material to end up in the hands of minors than if there was an 18+ rating.

The game has been crowbarred into the existing 15+ on appeal. I'm happy that's happened, I guess, but I don't think it's ideal. The game ought to be on the shelves with an appropriate age rating.
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