Take-Two shelves Manhunt 2

Plans to release game "temporarily suspended" while publisher continues exploring options.

798 Comments

In the wake of international bans and an Adults Only rating in the US, Manhunt 2 won't make its July 10 release date, Take-Two Interactive has confirmed. The game had been expected to ship that day for the PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable, and Nintendo Wii.

"Take-Two Interactive Software has temporarily suspended plans to distribute Manhunt 2 for the Wii or PlayStation platforms while it reviews its options with regard to the recent decisions made by the British Board of Film Classification and Entertainment Software Rating Board," a representative told GameSpot. "We continue to stand behind this extraordinary game. We believe in freedom of creative expression, as well as responsible marketing, both of which are essential to our business of making great entertainment."

While the ESRB's initial rating of an AO for Adults Only doesn't explicitly prohibit the game from being sold, most major US retailers refuse to carry AO games, and console manufacturers prohibit their third-party publishers from releasing AO titles on their systems.

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BaronPwent

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This is extremely disappointing. Censorship 1 Creative Freedom 0

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dryden555

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I dont need to play a snuff game (that's all it is folks).

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jakman2004

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sooo they are going to try and edit the gamE? forever people will be wondering what they missed out on from the uncut version now.

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wiz4ha

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Regginator14520 Sounds like you've played the game in its full and final form. From the playtests writen around the web, it sounds as though AO is quite appropriate. Whether or not you agree with Take 2 holding the release of Manhunt 2, it doesn't matter. This does not personally affect you in any manner. I think people are focusing a bit too much on the rating rather the game - shame too that a game would be infamous for it's rating than possibly how great or bad the game is. Lastly - parents: Get involved with your children. Know what they're doing. Even if Manhunt 2 gets an M rating, we still wouldn't want this game getting into the hands of anyone under the age of 17.

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batosaisilver

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Interesting.

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Penile_Finesse

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Yeah, tiredeye, the first game was about snuff films and whatnot... definently as crude, if not more so than MH2.

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tiredeye

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To be honest the people citing the violence in todays society and saying that this would contribute need to seriously look around them, standard fair violence is glorified everywhere, the films we watch, the books we read, the sports we play all contain varying levels of violence. If we are going to stop this game, should we not ban violence of any level, as violence at a lower level can always escalate to higher and higher levels. In my eyes the idea of censoring things is ridiculous at this level, yes some people will never ever play this game, and yes they will constantly cite it as being incredibly deranged and sick, oh well, thats there problem, all this chuntering on about how it isn't fit for public consumption is foolish, since when did one single person decide what the public wants or thinks, let alone the adult gamer niche market this is targeted at. I understand that the interaction levels of games are getting better and better, but if you've noticed so is everything, yes of course, you can't actively beat the other real life human while your watching boxing or MMA fighting, but you can now see it in HD, with zoom cameras, you can pause, rewind and replay every single punch captured from a multitude of angles, both of the two sports i have mentioned are incredibly brutal (nevermind the rules and regulations put in place) and i understand yes, there not murdering each other, im not saying that, this is a low level comparison, im just saying the violence argument is alittle flawed, any type of violence will get the blood flowing. So in effect would this not set some people off, would watching a man ground and pound another guy make some people want to do that too? As for Sony saying no no to AO, well unfortunately thats there choice, i don't agree, but there's nothing we can do there, hopefully take-two will take this away and strip out some of the sexual content, i should hope that will knock the rating down. And too the people saying kids will invariably play this, i hope you support banning every 18 rated game that features sex or high violence, because there most likely going to play them too, so, think about it, you should really support the banning of GTA, hell why don't we just be like germany and say no no, you can't even harm the visual representation of another human being through an interactive medium, even though yes you are an adult and can discern fantasy from reality. Tighten fines on minors, police the selling of games more effectively and increase your parental awareness, other gamers should not have to pay in droves for other peoples mistakes p.s. has anyone actually noticed that on some levels the story is much more geared towards a true survival story, Lamb is not being hunted for sport, he is being hunted for sole purpose of him knowing too much, if you ask me the premise of the first manhunt is a hell of alot more vulgar than this one, and if you do ask me, ill tell you that didn't bother me in the least, its a game, a game to be enjoyed by adults that was made by adults, much like any of the current rash of gore horrors, the descriptive horrors or slashers you read or indeed the 70's/80's grindhouse productions that are now not banned.

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Penile_Finesse

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I agree... censored or uncensored, there's still going to be some hardcore stuff in the game, and kids will get it regardless.. it's just now more of them know about the game from all the attention it's getting.

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NEVERDEAD

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To Lanezy: your argument is exactly what's wrong with the ESRB and much of society. As an adult, I should have the right to decide what is proper and decent to consume as long as I take personal responsibility for any consequences. Your contention that games are getting to violent is a matter of opinion, and shouldn't be projected on me or any other free thinking person. And as far as protecting kids from objectionable material; I'm all for it, but its primarily up to the parents of these kids to monitor what they're watching, listening to or playing. I'm also tired of these corporations like Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft from philosophically neutering adults by banning these games on their consoles for the sake of political correctness.Manhunt 2 won't make a kid any more or less likely to commit an act of violence, so stop blaming the media for the decay of society. ITS TIRED!!!

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the_deathstar

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just look at cnn right now and youll see stories on a missing pregnant woman, matricide, and a girl whose feet were cut off at six flags. so lets ban a video game, thanks for protecting my sensitivities!

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Buzita

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Regginator, no doubt the game will be knocked down to 'M' and released, and kids will still get their hands on the game anyways. So in the end, R* is simply getting free publicity. I just can't wait to see all the parents, soccer moms and watchdog groups still *****ing about it after R^ toned it down, because there's nothing they can do about it.

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Hvac0120

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Okay... So if the console manufacturers prevent THIRD-PARTY publishers from releasing the game on their consoles. Does that mean that FIRST-PARTY Publishers are allowed to? So, all R* has to do is get Take-Two to allow Sony to Publish the game so that it is allowed. Then while the AO is at least being sold in porn shops around the U.S., they can modify the other versions so that they receive an 'M' rating and can be published by Take-Two themselves. Then they can make some money for the game while making the corrections for the release that most people will see... I doubt all that would ever happen, but it could work...

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Dr_Swordopolis

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Hopefully I can say this without this evolving into too much of a philosophical or sociological debate. But to reiterate what a few people have said: HUMANS ARE INHERENTLY VIOLENT (and so to some extent, probably inherently evil). That is not to say that we cannot change, or certainly can't contain these rage-filled tendencies our body is genetically inclined towards. It has been shown in anthropological and sociological studies that from an early age, humans have violent tendencies. Now my point is this: whether or not you feel this game will affect you is a matter between you and/or whatever god you may or may not worship. But to be completely blind to the fact that this game would have an adverse impact on the development of adolescents (which is the very reason ESRB gave it an AO rating, to keep it from them) is to show how truly ignorant you are. I'm not calling anyone out, I'm just saying you have to see that this game can, and most likely will, affect the developing minds of kids. And the corporations know this; they aren't stupid. So despite there being an AO rating--which actually is used for a few PC games (Leisure Suit Larry), so to say it isn't even used is a baseless argument--Sony and Nintendo refuse to sell AO games for their gaming platforms because they know that kids will somehow get a copy of it, either through irresponsible parenting, shoddy ID checks, or simply from borrowing it from an older friend. I actually agree that raising children in a sheltered life is potentially just as damaging as subjecting them to this degree of brutality at a young age, but that doesn't mean we as a society should encourage this kind of mainstream media.

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Regginator14520

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There is absolutely now reason for Manhunt 2 to be rated Adults Only. There is no hardcore sex in it or anything that you would not see in a "Rated R" movie. The game is getting a whole lot of attention because it's Rockstar and Rockstar has a bad reputation. The game, respectively, deserves a "M" rating.

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Tequila_Zaire

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I still say they should do what was done with Indigo Prophecy. Release an M-Rated version for the consoles and an unrated version on the PC via digital distribution or ONLY sell the AO rated console version online.

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pencilpusher69

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Part of me wonders if there were a game called "Slavemaster" that recieved an AO rating, how many would still be offended about the rating? That said, I want to play the AO Manhunt 2 on the Wii, but life will go on even if it never see's the light of day.

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weldingpackage

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Can all this news about AO ratings and bannings be planned just to hype the game? I'm not saying I believe this. It just crossed my mind. Also, I haven't heard Jack Thompsons name during all this. I wonder where he is?

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fr33_loader

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wazzup987 hey don't lie you burt ants with the manfie glass to its a right passage or are you jack tompson ------------------------ No, we are too poor to afford one. LOL. Name calling is the best that you could do? You for one doesnt deserve to play the game because you are not mature enough.

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Galao

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I'm sick of people talking about violent kid and all that.Violent kid are mostly not violent because of game they are violent because THEY CAN'T FIND ANOTHER TO EXTORIORISED AGRESIVITY.Yes i play violent game,but NO i'm not violent in school or anywhere.I never think of beating up someone just because i played a fighting game it just relieve me of the agresivity i can get in a day.Kids that do violent thing HAD A PROBLEM BEFORE playing violent game so it's sure it don't help.Yes i agree that maybe some people may get strange idea in game like Manhunt of GTA but they still don't need to do them because they are IN A GAME AND NO ONE IS HURT!!PARENTS OR FRIENDS SHOULD DO SOMETHING IF THEY SEE SOMEONES GOT PROBLEM AND PLAY VIDEO GAME TOO MUCH. That's my oppinion and i can't care less if somebody talk **** about it PS:Sorry for my bad english EDIT:And what the heck about the Saw movie and all that where real people get mutilated and all....

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Greydawg

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GARBAGE! I would LOVE to play a horror game that's "mature enough" to garner an A/O rating. I still haven't heard enough to know exactly what content made it an A/O game (as best as I can tell it takes a sex act to turn an M rating to A/O, am I wrong?), but still, I'm disappointed, and the worst part is there is nothing we consumers can do--------we just have to sit and wait, and unless it comes out on PC we'll simply never see the A/O version...

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fr33_loader

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thomh A good post I must say. Its true that in history, this people have not played a single videogame but there is something that triggered their mind to work differently. Be it a book, a spoken story, or witnessed a certain event, that greatly influenced their action to create this great calamity. I for one am not sure that this game would have the same effect on somebody else's way of thinking. It might or wont, but an ounce of prevention is better than cure. Humans are flawed no doubt about it. Yes there will always be violence and hatred in the world and glorifying this type of game certainly wont help it. Simulations of game-types like this would only breed more violence.

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BadBoy10605

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I had no idea before this whole thing that Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo won't allow AO rated games to be published on their systems. Someone should start an online petition to show these companies that we disagree with their reasoning because it is a form of censorship that shouldn't be tolerated by gamers.

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Uglyface2

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The one thing I want to know is if there's any way to get my hands on a copy of this game. That's all. I don't really care what it's rated, I just want the game in my hot little hands.

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Lanezy

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It's in our nature to be violent, but we really don't need games like this to provoke any aggressive behavior in adolescents. Seriously, this game is not suitable in today's society. Especially since games are becoming more and more interactive (Wii) I think there is a big difference when comparing violence in video games and on TV. In video games, you are the one that is completely in control of what your character can do. You cause harm based on what you feel like doing. With violence on TV, you a merely watching the violence taking place. In no way is it as interactive as with video games. Also, let's be honest here people, we all know that young kids will get their hands on this game. I never had any problems buying M rated games when I was 15. This isn't about our rights and freedoms, nor is this game a work of art, it's over-the-top violence that is not necessary at all.

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jcardiff

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sorry corko you're argument bears no weight, a lot of kids get aggressive when playing aggressive type games (that is a fact) and a lot of kids do act out things from games, mortal kombat was about fighting so kids would play fight or fight but thats hardly a new concept is it seeing as a lot of them would already do this. theres a whole world of difference in sugar coating kids and wrapping them in cotton wool to games where the aim is to torture maim and kill.

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joshuahaveron

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I agree partly with walrus they allow films like hostel to be released but not manhunt 2?

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vee36

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thornh...........i couldnt of said it better myself.........these hypocritical member of government need to wake up an smelll something.......their almost as hypocritical and blind as as the christian faith.....and thats alot

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walrus1

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Yet we continue to release movies like hostel part 2. A double standard for video games really does exist. I don't like games like manhunt cause I prefer that the games I play don't make me sick to my stomach but as adult I should the right to decide what to buy not the ESRB.

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Corko21

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I think that while some of you have good arguments, many are missing the point. I'm 22 and have played video games my whole life, and I remember when Mortal Kombat came out, and it was considered/was one of the most violent/bloody video games to date. Yet, me and my bro played it endlessly (I was probably 11-12) and in addition to being Irish, we now had v.g. simulations with which to draw new concepts of violence from. However, the fact that I am not a twisted nut-job led me to refrain myself/realize that it is a FRICKIN VIDEO GAME. Yes, these games shouldn't be played shown to kids who have yet to hit puberty (as they are still 100% immature in all forms of the word) but at some point, kids are capable of their own thoughts/ideas. Trying to "shield" them from the horrors of the world is the real crime. You're not doing them any favors by giving them a sugar-coated view of reality. It will only make the realization of the truth that much more painful (i.e., Socrates' {i think it was him anyway} alegory of the cave, or, The Matrix). Let these kids learn as they go, and help guide them by telling them the truth about the things they see, not keeping it from them and protecting them like defenseless sheep. I'm glad my parents let us watch violent games/TV, it forced me to deal with things on my own, and led me to be the strong person I am today (as compared to my friends who were shielded, put in Private/Catholic schools - and are now weak/unstable/unsure adults). Hiding people from reality is not anyone's call to make. Let them see and help them to understand, and stop treating them like brain-dead morons - THEY'RE KIDS, NOT MONKEYS!

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danamal_sam

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what thornh said I totaly agree and well what can i say he's got a point.

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einsp

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This is booty, i was looking forward to this game for my PSP.

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vee36

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Well if parents are gonna be stupid enough to give kids what they want an pay no attention for age restrictions....doesnt that make em null in void or wa ?

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High-Res

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Well the good news is you couldn't Buy better Hype,Advertising or awareness for a Video Game, and they are getting this for free! Hell, probably planned it this way!

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crs121

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totally agree with thornh. very good points you have made there. I bet saddam has never played a video game and he has maimed and tortured numerous amount of people. I have no kids but if i did i would not let this game fall into their hands as i have played the first one and although i enjoyed it i know kids would re inact the moves.

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RomeroRepeatKil

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I don't know, moezao, there's plenty of other game genres out there that aren't too violent or gory. It's your violent human instinct that draws you to play video games where you can kill and get away with it. If you wanted to play other types of games, you certainly could.

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214268613970438989763616971988

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So what's the point of the AO rating if no one is going to accept it?

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wazzup987

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fr33_loader A new game genre has evolved. FPS, RPG, RTS, Driving games, Fighting games, Puzzle games, Card games........ Now, TGITB (Torture Game Is The Bomb) genre 2-10 yrs old can play Kids Level wherein they can squish bugs and so forth. Unlockable weapon will be the Magnifying Glass where you can wipe out a whole colony of ants. 10-18 yrs old can play Puberty Level. From dogs to cows can be skinned alive. Do whatever with them. The sound effects would be awesome for that matter in Dolby Surround sound output, the cat voice acting is especially great. A great party game. 18+ Adults Only Level. Torture at its maximum level. Friends, sister, wife, grandma is all a fairgame. Sky is the limit. Unlockable is that when you get too bored with the game, you can increase your adrenaline boost by doing it in real life. hey don't lie you burt ants with the manfie glass to its a right passage or are you jack tompson

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moezao

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Yeah i agree with gotohell (very suggestive....) even if i do like games that show some blood and violence sometimes there must be some boundaries. Actually if you think about it, which games you play today that don't have violence in it? If it's not a sports game (sometimes even if it is) it's a gun shooting, punching face, swordfighting or war game... So we really can't complain about it cause if it's gonna be censored it really must have crossed some boundaries.

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jcardiff

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unfortunately it happens all the time vee36, nearly half the GTA sales in my local game shops go to parents buying them for 9year olds and upwards, a large majority of parents take no notice of game age restrictions

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thornh

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To Dr_Swordopolis and all Your points are very valid and well stated. I do not take exception to anything you have said but would like to throw a slightly different spin on it. Oh, before I begin, society may not openly accept games that freely utilize axes and chainsaws but there have been plenty of games in the past thirty years that have featured them. One of my favorite classics is Golden Axe. It even has axe it the title! Anyway, I wanted to address the video game medium in respect to world history. I will not deny that certain adults and absolutely all children should not play violent video games (I'm a father of five) but I question exactly how much influence violent videogames have on society as a whole. Yes, there seems to be a direct correlation to certain events but there seems to be a greater underlying problem. I ask all of you reading this to think about history, ancient and more recent. As most of use know the age of videogames for the masses started in the early to mid 1970s. Prior to, and obviously coexisting today with video games, is the film industry and, of course, literature. Movies first appeared in the late 1800s and early 1900s but didn't really make an impact until the 1920s. Books, in all forms, have been around for a millenia or so. What is my point? Well, we as a society tend to point fingers at what causes people to be violent. Today it's Manhunt 2 (a game only a few people in the world have actually played). Hitler never played a videogame, though he is responsible for starting a conflict which killed over 60 million people around the world. You know what he did though? He burned books. Abe Lincoln and the Confedrates had no videogames or movies, but brother still killed brother. The great Roman Empire fed Christians to the lions and cheered as man fought man to the death. What did they blame for the violence? Today, in dark corners of the world, freedoms are eliminated by extremeists. They keep their women subserviant and teach hatred to their children. They commit extreme acts of violence but yet they BAN movies, music and videogames in their societies! Manhunt 2 and games like it are not what is wrong with humanity. Keeping games like this away form responsible adults will not change mankind. Humans are flawed and probably always will be. There will always be violence and hatred around the world. I do agree that the U.S. and other "western" countries need to lead the way to try to curb extremeism and violence around the world but this is not the place to start. Unfortunately Manhunt, GTA, the Sopranos etc. reflect parts of society that are REAL and we need to do something about the reality first and maybe the simulations will go away..... Feel free to pick me apart. This is just one man's opinion.

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vee36

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yo, gotohell83......what parent would be stupid enough to give their 13 yr old kid a game with ''AO'' stamped on it ???

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gotohell83

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Come on people ask yourselves is it really about the freedom of speech? I don't see how saving this game will make any difference for the gaming community. In fact if it will be released anyone who'll try to blame game violence for the decay of our society will have a really good point there. I'm sure that this games footage would appear in every document concerning game violence. I know it's kind of far fetched and extreme, but think about it, if you were a parent of some 13 yr old kid who plays video games constantly and one day decides to set grandma on fire who would you blame and who would you sue. It's not about the freedom of speech, it's about the right to irresponsibility and doing what anyone pleases. Why stop here, if we hate censorship in games so much and don't want any boundaries than why not allow child sex images in games. And no, it's not a completely different thing. If someone says that as long as violence is considered anything goes, but when it comes to sex it's totally different than he's a hypocrite. The only ones to blame are people at Rockstar themselves. They were trying so hard to be shocking and controversial and tried to push the boundaries of what one can do in video games so far that they finally got what they deserved. We need some boundaries, and I for one am glad that Rockstar got theirs.

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digital_soul

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In fact most of the people posting on this board appear to have the intelligence and literacy of someone much younger than 18 so I guess the censors have been proved right. The game would be played on mass by those not legally old enough to play it.

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digital_soul

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metaljeff. I dont know why you are concerned. The game is for adults anyway, so you wouldnt be able to play it for a good few years yet.

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feryl06

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great, we're going to get a not so great version of the game--a dumb down gameplay and less graphics. Thank you censorship---NOT!

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Blood7863

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Next thing you know they make Viva Pinata AO

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Phazevariance

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Why not ban movies with gore and even cencore the NEWS for showing violence on video playback... wait, esrb doesnt censor, they just make it impossible to sell witht he rating, so it is censored by no one!

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