Reservoir Dogs game banned in Australia

Eidos' interactive take on Quentin Tarantino's classic crime-caper film is refused classification.

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The developers at Blitz Games, creators of Eidos' upcoming game adaptation of Quentin Tarantino's cult classic Reservoir Dogs, have said that it's possible for players to make it through the entire game without killing a single person.

It seems Australia's Office of Film and Literature Classification chose not to play the game that way, as last Friday it refused to classify the game with a rating, effectively banning it in the country. The Web site of Australian tech magazine APC reports that Atari Australia, the distributor of the game down under, has decided to scrap the project rather than resubmitting it with edits.

Earlier this year, the OFLC reassessed its previous classification of Atari's graffiti-inspired game Marc Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure. Last November the game was given an MA 15+ classification, meaning it was not suitable for people under 15 due to strong violence and strong themes. However, two days before the game was scheduled to go on sale, the classification was revoked and the game was banned, with the OFLC giving as reason for the banning that the game promoted the crime of graffiti.

Reservoir Dogs has now joined a less-than-exclusive club. Titles such as BMX XXX, Manhunt, Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude, Postal, Postal 2, 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Narc, The Punisher, The Getaway, Phantasmagoria, and the Roberta Williams Anthology (the American version of which featured a one-chapter preview of Phantasmagoria) have also been refused classification and banned in the country, although some of them (such as Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and BMX XXX) have later been granted ratings.

[UPDATE 6/28]: Eidos responded to the banning today, acknowledging that the game won't be released in Australia. According to the publisher's statement, "The game remains faithful to the cult classic film, directed by Quentin Tarantino, and as such, is an ultra-violent third person action game and the OFLC's rating system does not have a suitable age classification for this."

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