WB to appeal Aussie Mortal Kombat ban

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment Australia to challenge the Australian Classification Board on the refused classification ruling of its upcoming fighter; company to resubmit an unedited version of game.

Last week, the Australian Classification Board flexed its muscles for the first time in 2011, effectively banning Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment's upcoming fighting game Mortal Kombat. The Refused Classification rating given to the game by the board makes the selling, promotion, and importing of Mortal Kombat illegal Down Under. The ruling caused outrage among the Aussie gaming community last week and saw retailers come out in support of an overhaul to Australia's classification system.

Just a few days since the ruling, WBIE's Australian office has now decided to challenge the board's decision in an attempt to get Mortal Kombat released in Australia. "After careful consideration, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment Australia have decided to appeal to the Australian Classification Review Board against the RC (Refused Classification) decision given to Mortal Kombat. After reviewing both the gameplay and the Board's original decision, WBIE Australia believes the violence in the game is on par with numerous other titles readily available for sale in the Australian market. As such the company wants to exhaust all options to make the game available to Mortal Kombat fans in this country. An identical version of the game will be submitted for appeal."

GameSpot AU managed to get hold of the board report last week and discovered that the classification decision was made due to the game's "explicit" violence, blood spray, and limb dismemberment during fatalities--things which made it unable to be accommodated within the maximum MA15+ guidelines.

Mortal Kombat isn't the first game from WBIE to get banned in Australia. In 2009, F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origins also got the chop for extreme violence. The publisher appealed the rating, and the game was then reclassified, with the board finding that the MA15+ classification did indeed accommodate the violence in the first-person shooter.

For more info on R18+ for video games in Australia, check out our extensive coverage.

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Discussion

93 comments
tume-x
tume-x

So, um, this is the same government that lets 15-year olds play Dead Space? MA15+... Actually, it's not the goverment right? They are now trying to get the R18 rating too according to some news sites.

pezbear1975
pezbear1975

Yep because tomorrow I'm gunna get up walk down the street and hurl fireballs and SH&T at passers by. Stupid Australian Government. No wonder why people import......I do and it's still works out cheaper to have it sent to my front door.....

TheRedChannels
TheRedChannels

I don't think the point is how violent it is. The point is that an adult should be able to purchase and view any form of entertainment he or she likes, period. I can't believe that "Western" (so to speak) nation such as Australia actually has laws that allow a ratings board to make the import, promotion, and sale of any piece of art or entertainment illegal. That's shocking. As an American, I had no idea they could do that.

whispershade86
whispershade86

I hope the appeal goes thur, I'll be crushed if it doesnt get released in Oz :(

frazzz619
frazzz619

p.s can someone tell me if NZ is same region as Oz? if so i plan on importing from our kiwi friends

frazzz619
frazzz619

Dead Space 2 is alien limb dismemberment...I think thats why they see a difference between that & MK. In their eyes MK is more realistic. Not that it's any less gory, perhaps the ACB have friends that look like ninjas and men with metal arms & it hit a little too close 2 home...

dr_satan666
dr_satan666

I agree with WB and their concerns that MK's violence is definitely on par with majority of released titles. This refused classification is total BS and completely unjustified. "high impact violence, dismemberment, decapitation....uhhhhh (Bulletstorm, dead space 2, Splatterhouse just to name a few. This inconsistency makes our government look like a bunch of morons. it is what it is.... Here's hoping for a positive outcome. Don't make us look elsewhere for this.

Brewski_420
Brewski_420

Man this just makes me angry, people should be able to play whatever they want i mean come on! i feel the upmost pain for the aussies but i just have to say that im glad i live in North America where we can have the fun-filled gore just by being 18 or older or with parent consent.

Wrathesoul
Wrathesoul

Australia goverment is so illogical dismemberment blood spray like whats in dead space and dead space 2 etc and they are here untouched....Think the goverment is just being selfish waiting for a bribe to line their unholy pockets.

wawasjohn
wawasjohn

have u ever seen Law Abiding Citizen thats only MA and thats worse than Mortal Kombat. i dont want R18. because no game is as bad as R18 movie. like gta, cod, god of war cant be 18+

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

Since the Aussie government is pushing for an R18 to be in place by June/July (can't remember which), WB would be better off just delaying the game in Australia.

thanksbrain
thanksbrain

AVP got reclassified with no alteration on appeal, so maybe this will work. MK was always a classic, i used to ride my pushy 5km to the petrol station with a couple bucks in my pocket just to challenge my friends. Ah the memories.

lilflex1
lilflex1

looks like they might not have 2 stick with mk vs dc (because thats the cleanest mk game)

EndlessKombat
EndlessKombat

I feel so sorry for the user TotalMK, it's like a slap in the face to one of the biggest fans.

Vishant
Vishant

Laws are not made in a logical way, listening to experts to gauge harm from media. It is based on expectations of what the media output should be and the ratings and expectations made accordingly. I.E. Games are for children and must be childish

DrKill09
DrKill09

Australia, where fun is illegal. :roll:

AceBalls
AceBalls

Importing will work as long as you don't import a large quantity of copies at once to the one address. MK will cost about $65 Aussie right to your doorstep.

DanielL5583
DanielL5583

I am somewhat apologetic to Aussies at this time. Most of their games are censored or banned, especially in somewhat stupid cases. With Mortal Kombat, WB have every right to appeal. Mortal Kombat is the gift that keeps on giving, but in a good way.

MEDzZ3RO
MEDzZ3RO

The Aussies should bget Mortal Kombat, if they don't they should seriously rework the ratings system.

The_Gaming_Baby
The_Gaming_Baby

An adult can handle the content of the game and considering its made for adults and isn't allowed to be sold to minors, then whats the problem?

Warlord_Irochi
Warlord_Irochi

WB fought for FEAR 2 in the past. They alwais fight for they projects. Some companies should do the same instead of giving up.

TouoT
TouoT

Don't get over here

monson21502
monson21502

they should hire me as a lawyer..... all i would have to do is take my laptop in the court room and let the judge go into almost any chatt room and see how horney the assie girls are and how they talk and what kind of pictures they show u. then ill show him the game and he will slam his hammer down and yell this stuff is childsplay!!

buckybuckster
buckybuckster

I feel for our Aussie friends. A broken ratings system and it's actually cheaper to buy import games? Just dosen't seem right!!!

Bozanimal
Bozanimal

The problem isn't that ratings exist, but the disparity in ratings and enforcement between countries. International standards need to be adopted and aligned. Having the ESRB provide one rating and the ACB give another, with different enforcement standards, limits commerce and discourages trade. Everyone loses: The gamers, the developer, the publisher, the distributor, and even the importing government (which typically receives some form of tax or tariff on imports).

masterds64
masterds64

@guitarist1980 They don't, movies get in fine since we have an r18+ for those, as for comics...I wouldn't know seeing as few dedicated comic book shops are about, but with the zombie comics with some nudity along with the gut spilling I don't think comics have any problems :P

guitarist1980
guitarist1980

I am glad I don't live in Australia this stuff would annoy the living **** out of me. I cant imagine my government telling me what I cant play or cant watch. Do they outlaw movies and comic books too?

Darth_DuMas
Darth_DuMas

lol they banned Mortal Kombat, what is this, the 90s.

GONtheSKYLORD
GONtheSKYLORD

"We share blood, but we are not brothers." This quote deserves Gladiator status.

windwave
windwave

Gonna import anyway, it's not like games are cheap here in Australia.

Skakruk
Skakruk

well,noob saibot has really, i mean, REALLY cool moves. can't wait ....

stray2615
stray2615

WBIE needs to hand the classification board a copy of MK along with a copy of Splatterhouse and say "If you can honestly tell us why MK is worse we will stop asking for classification". The fact is there is no way MK is more violent than splatterhouse and neither should get in without an R18 rating, but as it stands if splatterhouse is acceptable then so should MK.

DEATH775
DEATH775

People please, do you really know how to use your brain? Its not the game, don't ever blame the violence from a game. Its all in the person and the parents.

Shilleto
Shilleto

you are allowed to buy penthouse when you are 15 and buy R movies at 18 laws here are silly need to be changed

keech
keech

If Splatterhouse got released down under without censorship they have no excuse what so ever for banning any game based on excessive blood, gore, and violence. Period.

a_leo_a
a_leo_a

all of enjoy of MK is depend on brutal and violence and BLOOD

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

Censorship is purified evil. This is fact not an opinion.

Lordcrabfood
Lordcrabfood

As has been stated numerous times, import this if you really want the game. I always import now in protest of inflated game prices here in Oz. Not only will you get the game cheaper but in a few cases such as left 4 dead 2 you get the uncut version.

woggyboy
woggyboy

If they sell this game in Australia & cut-out some of the Gore or features on it. I will be Purchasing it online.

knightl
knightl

^why world is gonna end i 2012 ima blow up the sun just to kill my government ill just improt it then send them videos of australian porn(underbelly for etc) and see how stupid they are

cheokdoc
cheokdoc

[insert 5 minute youtube clip of kratos highlights]

umster
umster

this R18+ issue in the land of OZ is getting ridiculous. Its like they have no ryme or reason for allowing or refusing games. We have never had problems with MK before, why are they starting now? Us Australian adults deserve to have the right to choose what games we want to buy and play. For instants they allowed all of the GTA series which includes drug dealing, killing, stealing, car jacking, squishing people with your car, sex, guns, bombs, murder, graffiti and loads of other cool "GAMING" content. But they banned Mark Eccos Getting Up which only has graffiti used it (figure that one out ?) Anyway hopfully things will change for us soon, in my opinion it cant come quick enough

ohgod247
ohgod247

Didn't Aus. get Dead Rising 2? Chopping zombies heads off with chainsaws connected to ores or whatever? This is ridiculous and sometimes I think it's all planned to get exposure to generate more sales.

protaganist20
protaganist20

If we had our R rating none of this would be happening.

FallenOneX
FallenOneX

Are the movie ratings that strict as well, or are they based in some form of reality?

Joser15
Joser15

just for fun @maxwell97 "If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary." - James Madison :D

H0rr0rG4m3r
H0rr0rG4m3r

I live in Australia and what I dont get is that R+18 movies are allowed no problem which is real while just an animated game cant get through, retards these days...