In August 1996, an arcade version of GALS PANIC 2 was Refused Classification by the OFLC. The Victorian police were the applicant. It was most likely banned because of nudity, which was used as an incentive or reward.
This YouTube clip provides a good overview of how tame the game was.
In August 1996, an arcade version of GALS PANIC 3 was Refused Classification. The Victorian police were the applicant. It was most likely banned because of nudity, which was used as an incentive or reward.
This YouTube clip provides a good overview of how tame the game was.
In October 2002, a preliminary version of THE GETAWAY received an MA15+ (Medium level animated violence, Medium course language) rating.
On November 22nd 2002, Sony Computer Entertainment had a more complete version passed with an MA15+ (High Level Animated Violence, High Level Course Language, Sexual References, Drug References) rating.
In their 2002 to 2003 Annual Report, the OFLC explained that this version was still incomplete.
The applicant for The Getaway submitted a revised version of the game which omitted the strongest elements of violence and obtained an MA15+ classification with the consumer advice, ‘High level animated violence, high level coarse language, sexual references, drug references’.
On November 27th 2002, Sony submitted the full version of THE GETAWAY and received an RC-rating from the OFLC.
Thanks to Dean L for sending in the report.
Title: THE GETAWAY
Board Report T02/2840
Playstation game in which a former gang member is forced to carry out various errands for his ex-boss who is holding his son hostage.
REASONS FOR THE DECISION:
When making this classification decision the Classification Board (the Board) followed the procedure set out in the Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Act 1995 (the Act). The Board also applied the National Classification Code and the Classification Guidelines, while taking into account the matters set out in section 11 of the Act.
The National Classification Code (the Code), in the Computer Games, Table 1, states that:
Computer Games will be refused classification (RC) if they :
a) depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency or propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified.
The Classification Guidelines for Computer Games, Amendment No. 2, April 1999 (the Guidelines), in the RC section, state that:
Computer Games will be refused classification (RC) if they contain:
depictions of realistic violence, even if not detailed, relished or cruel (eg. excessive and serious violence, such as realistic depictions of dismemberment accompanied by loss of blood to real life images;
extreme ’horror’ scenarios or special effects; depictions of unduly detailed and/or relished acts of extreme violence or cruelty.
In the majority opinion of the Board, this Game contains depictions of violence that exceed those indicated in the MA15+ Guidelines and, therefore, warrants an RC classification for the scenes in which a person is seen suspended from a ceiling in full motion video, blood detail to various parts of the body and being tortured by a male using electric shocks to the body.
The victim is seen swaying and crying out in pain as the torturer sings an Arsenal football song.
A minority of the Board considered the gameplay in a night club in which a nude and semi nude female dancer can be shot by the player to be sexualised violence warranting an RC classification.
A minority of the Board is of the view that this game includes breast nudity in incidental visuals, such as with a background ’pole dancer’, and in violent context. There is no " ’bona fide’ educational, medical or community health purpose" for the nudity and this minority considers this element exceeds ’MA’ as set out in the Guidelines.
A minority of the Board considers the violence to be realistic violence of medium intensity (eg impactful punches, kicks, blows and bloodshed to realistic animated characters or real-life images). In the minority view, the game can be accommodated in the MA classification with consumer advices of High Level Animated Violence, High Level Coarse Language, Sexual References and Drug references.
Following the ban, Sony removed the torture scene, and released the game with an MA15+ rating.
The Futregamez site described what was missing from the final Australian version of THE GETAWAY.
In all, 20 seconds of non-interactive cut-scenes have been removed - with absolutely no changes made to the gameplay or storyline. This 20 second scene involves the torturing of a captive which goes beyond that deemed acceptable in Australian video games by the OFLC. Once again there have been absolutely no changes to the actual gameplay so those with the game on pre-order need not worry.
Thanks to Richard C. for this information.
The problem torture scene in THE GETAWAY can be found in this YouTube clip from 04:54 to 0.5:13. That matches up to the 20s that Futregamez mentioned as being removed. Note that the clip goes back to the torture, mainly them punching the guy, a couple of times from 05:23 to 06:38. I am not sure if this was also removed from the MA15+ version.
This was a really dumb reason for banning THE GETAWAY, as similar scenes are able to appear in MA15+ movies.
This game has never had problems with the Australian censors. It is included as an example of classification policy.
In March 2005, GOD OF WAR was passed with an MA15+ (Medium level animated violence, Sexual references) rating. Sony Computer Entertainment was the applicant.
Although it had no problems with the OFLC, it is still worth mentioning as it illustrates their changing attitudes to sexual content in games.
Mick has played the game and has provided the following run-down.
The nudity: Every woman in the game has breasts showing. At the end of the first level there are two females laying on a bed having sex (breasts are showing) when the cut scene ends they are still laying there.
The Sex: If you hop onto the bed you are able to have sex with them by pressing "O". The camera zooms away, but I have confirmed info that this is how the game is all around the world. You press various buttons, such as Square, Triangle and X to control the sex. If you succeed, you get orbs that increase you're magic powers.
In July 2003, GOTHIC 2 was passed with an M (Medium Level Animated Violence) rating. Atari Australia was the applicant.
In September 2009, the Classification Board listed GOTHIC 2 as having its rating revoked. It is unclear why this was done, although an expansion pack titled GOTHIC 2: NIGHT OF THE RAVEN was released in 2005, but never submitted for a rating. Note that the rating revoke has now been removed from the Classification Board's database.
On the same day as GOTHIC 2, Atari Australia also had the rating of DRAGON BALL: ORIGINS revoked.
DRAGON BALL: ORIGINS and GOTHIC 2 were listed in the category as 'RECSec21'. This was presumably Section 21 of the Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Act 1995, which states:
21 Declassification of classified films or computer games that are modified
(1) Subject to subsection (2), if a classified film or a classified computer game is modified, it becomes unclassified when the modification is made.
(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to a modification that consists of:
(a) including or removing an advertisement, other than an advertisement to which section 22 applies; or
(b) for an imported film or computer game that was in a form that cannot be modified and has subsequently been converted to a form that can be modified—removing, from the film or game, material that was advertising referred to in paragraph (f) of the definition of advertisement in section 5.
21A Revocation of classification of films or computer games that are found to contain contentious material
If the Board is of the opinion that:
Classification Part 2 Classification of publications, films and computer games Division 2 Section 22 Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Act 1995 21
(a) a classified interactive film or a classified computer game contains contentious material (whether activated through use of a code or otherwise) that was not brought to the Board’s attention in accordance with subsection 14(4) or 17(2) before the classification was made; and
(b) if the Board had been aware of the material before the classification was made, it would have given the film or game a different classification; the Board must revoke the classification,
and must also revoke approval of any approved advertisement for the film or game.