Deadly Premonition DOA down under?

UPDATE: Publisher voluntarily decides to not release horror game in Australia; local censor board says game was never submitted for classification.

Australia's lack of an R18+ classification for video games has been a thorn in gamers' sides around the country for a number of years now, as it affects the release of high-profile titles such as Left 4 Dead 2, Aliens vs. Predator, and more. Although those games are the ones that get the most attention, numerous other smaller titles have also felt the wrath of the Australian Classification Board (ACB), with the upcoming horror game Deadly Premonition from Ignition Entertainment joining the ranks of the damned.

Deadly Premonition--a horror adventure game that puts you in the role of an FBI agent investigating strange events in an even stranger town--has been refused classification by the ACB, making the game illegal for sale down under. All Interactive Entertainment--the game’s local distributor--confirmed the game's banning to GameSpot AU, although the reasons behind the decision are unclear at this stage. "We're unsure of the details as to why it was banned. We're trying to confirm with the Classification Board as we speak," the spokesman said.

Literally bending over backwards to impress the Australian Classification Board wasn't enough to get Deadly Premonition through.

The highest rating available for a game in Australia is MA15+, meaning any game that is deemed to have content inappropriate to that rating level is banned for sale. Previous games to get banned (such as Fallout 3 and Left 4 Dead 2) have undergone edits to appease the ACB, but the AIE spokesman said that no appeal is currently in progress for Deadly Premonition.

The Australian Classification Board had not responded to GameSpot AU's request for comments as of time of publication.

With the Australian federal election just around the corner, GameSpot AU recently spoke to the three major political parties to find out their stances on R18+, which can be read here. For more information on the R18+ classification issue in Australia, check out our in-depth feature.

UPDATE: The Australian Classification Board has told GameSpot AU that despite AIE's comments, Deadly Premonition has not been banned. In fact, an ACB spokesperson says the game has not been submitted for classification at all. The game was also not submitted using its Japanese title, Red Seeds Profile.

UPDATE 2: There is, at last, final clarification on this issue; this time direct from Deadly Premonition's Western publisher Rising Star Games. It seems that the game was indeed never submitted for classification in Australia, as Rising Star Games had decided internally that Deadly Premonition would not make it past local censors unscathed.

"As part of our normal procedures in submitting any game for classification, it was determined internally at Rising Star Games that the game would not satisfy the criteria for an MA15+ rating in Australia and further that any changes to the game would not be possible. It was therefore decided, with regret, the game will not be released in Australia," the company said in a statement.

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Discussion

30 comments
wwlettsome
wwlettsome

Guess I'm glad I don't live in Australia where the they need big brother to give their games the all clear.

cannibal87
cannibal87

Im just sick of it im just gona buy all my games from the uk from now on ill spend my money there

the_mitch28
the_mitch28

Same as Blacklight Tango Down Guess they must not like money or something.

streak000
streak000

I think the lack of R rating in Australia is just an excuse in this case. The publisher obviously thought it would not be profitable to release the game here, and used the Board as a scapegoat. There's no way this game would have been banned. I would respect Rising Star Games a lot more if they were just honest with us and didn't try to play us all for fools. As it is, this joke of a publisher is forever dead in my eyes. The game looks terrible, but is meant to have a great story and atmosphere. I was really looking forward to playing it.

DarkPhoneix85
DarkPhoneix85

even thou the game doesn't look very good, as lots of users have said, l'm very much filled with dread at the thought that because of the australian government's lack of interest in joining the world when it comes to games classification, developers, like Rising Star Games, are now immediately associating australia with a "why should we bother bringing our games or getting our games classified down under" attitude. if something isn't done soon and this kind of attitude isn't removed before it's too late, i fear for the state of gaming of any kind in australia. If a studio like Rising Star Games has the guts to express something like this, think of what gaming will be like in australia if major studios start adopting this approach. maybe l'm worrying about the worst case scenario that may never happen, but still, it scares me to think about it.

Warlord2000
Warlord2000

Oh what a terrible loss....not this vid looks craptastic

rigzzsy
rigzzsy

what about a uk release? =[

eBentl
eBentl

Got to agree, really doesn't look like we're missing out on much

selbie
selbie

What !? no F.K. in my coffee!?! THIS IS MADNESS!! Meh...I enjoyed the endurance run that the Giantbomb guys did. It just wouldn't be the same without the hilarious comments :P

deathstar79
deathstar79

This game looks awful anyway, Aussies probably aren't missing much...

majikninja69
majikninja69

well looks like ill just use my hacked 360 for this game, i dont care if u cry over piracy, its ur fault Rising Star Games, you wont be geting my money or anything else. fu ck ing lame is all it is

streak000
streak000

This publisher is completely ridiculous. First they lie to everyone and blame it on the board, and then it's like "oh well, it might have been banned, so we're not even gonna submit it just in case". No wonder no-one's ever heard of this Rising Star Games. They seem to be a very poor, lazy company. I don't even wanna import the game now. I'm not going to contribute a cent to this horrible publisher's income.

Bedizen
Bedizen

If I want it I will import it - but at the moment it doesn't seems my type of game

CyberElfSlut
CyberElfSlut

lol - cheap attempt to hype up their game fails :)

ShaunageAU
ShaunageAU

I saw the game played to completion TWICE on Giant Bomb's Endurance Run and the game doesn't even almost approach an R. It's a solid MA, but I'd love to know what I missed.

Witchsight
Witchsight

What a shame... I had to track this down and could only find it used. The guy at the store shook his head when he saw it... But its been an awesome ride so far!

Deano
Deano

ok the developer is just being stupid, they decided themselves it wouldn't be passed without actually submitting it?

Mattyrock
Mattyrock

Wow, this honeslty sucks. I wanted to get this game because it looks so bad that it has to be fun. For a game of this sub-par quality, it's amazing on how it got a cult-following in the US.

Mattyrock
Mattyrock

Wow, this honeslty sucks. I wanted to get this game because it looks so bad that it has to be fun. For a game of this sub-par quality, it's amazing on how it got a cult-following in the US.

BlackendV
BlackendV

So how many other games do we get told have been banned here, For us to get annoyed at the system And then it turns out they just didn't want to sell their game here.

Shaun832
Shaun832

UPDATE: Deadly Premonition was never submitted for classification and, according to Rising Star Games, never will. If you want this game when it comes out in the PAL regions, your going to have to import it. I know I will :D

flaylover
flaylover

way to give us news then totally crap on it

volcax
volcax

Looks like they only said they had been refused classification so they would get the extra publicity. Cunning...

bennae66
bennae66

another one bites the dust

Nickosaurus-Rex
Nickosaurus-Rex

Gameplay doesn't look very scary. Maybe the purple blood is too hardcore!

lamprey263
lamprey263

interesting, they simply forgot to submit the game for review, that shouldn't take long to clear up I'd imagine

doorselfin
doorselfin moderator staff

Aw man. I was actually really looking forward to playing this beautiful trainwreck.