New Syphon Filter self-censored

Canadian objections spur SCEA to delete a controversial Quebec terrorist level from the upcoming game.

Syphon Filter: The Omega Strain underwent a little filtering itself over the weekend, when developer and publisher Sony Computer Entertainment America bowed to pressure from Canadians outraged by a level of the forthcoming game.

According to an article in the London Free Press (London, Ontario), objections to the level--which featured Quebecois separatists seizing control of a Toronto subway station--came from two fronts. The Toronto Transit Authority didn't fancy having one of its stations being used in a simulated terrorist attack. And Quebec officials weren't thrilled that the terrorists were named the Quebec Liberation Front. In 1970, the real-life Quebec Liberation Front (Front de liberation du Quebec) kidnapped and murdered a regional official and prompted the English-speaking Ottawa government to invoke emergency powers in the Francophone province.

A spokesperson for Sony Canada was apologetic, saying "We deeply regret any misunderstanding this may have caused." The company added, "the product in its current state is being withdrawn and the production version worldwide will contain no component related to the Quebec separatist adventure."

There was no word on whether the cuts would affect Syphon Filter: The Omega Strain's release date, currently scheduled for January, 2004.

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