Korea lifts game censorship

Ghost Recon 2 and Splinter Cell Chaos Theory to get Korean release as bans on titles are lifted.


Game censorship is something of a hot topic right now, with many countries seeking stronger control over the content of games. At the top end of the scale, this includes Germany, which is currently debating drastic measures, among them fines and imprisonment for those who commit "cruel violence on humans or human-looking characters."

In Europe, horror game Rule of Rose caused a furore when the mayor of Rome called for the game to be banned, stating that "this game must not enter Italian homes." 505 Games pulled the European release in response to the controversy.

Likewise, in the US, activist lawyer Jack Thompson protested against Rockstar Games' Bully, calling for it to be banned. However, Miami Judge Ronald Friedman approved the game, and the title was released as planned.

In South Korea, things seem to be moving in the opposite direction. Games which depict military and political actions against North Korea have previously been deemed to be too touchy with the current political situation between the two Koreas, and such titles have therefore not been released in South Korea. These include Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon 2, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Chaos Theory, and Mercenaries.

However, The Game Rating Board of Korea has announced that it will lift the ban and those games will be available in 2007. According to a report in The Korea Times, Kim Key-man, the head of the Rating Board, said that this will come after "careful review of their contents." The reasoning behind the decision was said to be "to allow freedom of expression."

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