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Dutch would allow Manhunt 2 release

Manhunt 2, effectively banned in the UK and Germany, and only recently granted an M rating in the US after changes were made to the code, would be allowed on shelves in Holland, but only if Rockstar decided to go ahead and publish the game in Europe.

Manhunt 2, effectively banned in the UK and other European countries, and only recently granted an M rating in the US after changes were made to the code, would be allowed on shelves in Holland, but only if Rockstar decided to go ahead and publish the game in Europe.

Currently the title has been axed while the result of an appeal against the British Board of Film Classification's initial decision to refuse the game a rating is pending, although there's no indication as to how long that process may take.

But in a recent development, according to an Associated Press report, the Dutch government is actually unable to apply a ban to the game.

This is because, as Justice Minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin wrote, the country's laws are based on "the principle that every adult is considered capable of deciding for himself which games he wants to play, unless it contains illegal material."

That illegal material would include racist propaganda or material appealing to paedophiles, neither of which is contained in Manhunt 2.

Therefore a scenario might arise in which the game, while banned in the UK and Germany, could be released in other PAL territories, such as Holland.

However, this is speculation at this point, and as a Rockstar spokesperson reiterated to GamesIndustry.biz today, the company's position has not changed since the original BBFC decision.

"It is very good news that Manhunt 2 has now been rated Mature for North America and will be released October 31. However, we have no updated information on the BBFC status of the game or a release of the game in Europe."

Holland doesn't have its own ratings board for videogames, and Ballin stated that while his ministry was looking at whether new laws were required to address situations such as this, he hoped that the EU might come up with "a joint approach [that] could lead to a ban on the most violent games."

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