News Article

Talking Point: Censoring Boingy Bits, Bums and Gore

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Won't somebody think of the children?

The past week has brought us a couple of stories around the localisation of Fire Emblem: Awakening that, depending on your viewpoint, may be considered either funny, quirky or a disheartening example of censorship. We had the Nintendo of Europe translation of one conversation remove a rather juvenile reference to "boingy bits" in preference of praising hair, and a further revelation that, perhaps bizarrely, a picture of a Tharja's derriere in a bikini was crudely covered, yet distinctly racier shots of Cordelia and Chrom stand, with the former struggling to preserve her modesty and the latter showing off his well-toned rear end in some fetching Fire Emblem-branded swimming trunks.

The first example can be debated, as there's confusion over whether the hair reference or the pre-pubescent (arguably) boingy bits remark is closer to the Japanese original, but the latter is cut and dried as it's all down to imagery. As the headline may have tipped you off, we don't intend to turn this into an academic thesis on sexualised representation in video games, as there are lots of places around the web to argue in endless circles on these issues; good debates to have, but they can often go off the deep end and abandon reasonable responses. What we're going to do is highlight some famous examples of localised safety blankets and point out just how inconsistent and confusing it all is.

One prime example is the opening to PlayStation title Soul Blade, in which there's a moment where a female character is clearly naked and a small amount of cleavage is visible, and later there's a moment where you see a woman's naked back as she stands up in water. In the tweaked Western intro the first part remains unchanged, yet for the latter she has clothes rendered into place. You can see a side-by-side in the video below.

In fact, it should surprise no-one that a number of changes like these typically involve covering up women, though naturally the age-rating plays a part. That said, the age classification isn't always the logical cause, as the Awakening example at the top of the article shows. Let's take Batman: Arkham City Armoured Edition, which prompted chuckles when its new "armour", part of the gimmick named in the title, covered up Catwoman's cleavage; we'll never know whether that was a conscious decision due to her appearance or genuinely a re-design for the armoured mechanic, but it didn't make the Wii U game's age rating lower than the Xbox 360 or PS3 versions. Regardless of the reasons, it gave a little ammunition to those that said Nintendo systems continue to encourage small — and arguably insignificant — steps to take the edge off mature games.

There are examples where that logic can be debunked, where controversial games have arrived on Nintendo consoles — and therefore been approved — with meaty M-ratings; Madworld springs to mind on Wii. Yet Nintendo has earned the overly-cautious reputation through some of its actions, it must be said. A famous example that is still vague and unresolved to this day is that of Final Fight on Super NES. Characters Poison and Roxy appeared in the game in Japan, but North American play testing by Nintendo — remember it was hands-on in scaling back mature themes in third-party games — suggested that hitting women wouldn't go down well with an audience; that didn't stop titles such as Streets of Rage 2 on the SEGA Mega Drive / Genesis. Capcom's Akira Yasuda actually pointed out that the characters were transgender — Nintendo's reaction was to still move to replace the characters with two male grunts.

That story is shrouded in rumour, but there are others where Nintendo systems have taken cautious approaches beyond those of competitors. One of these is the original Mortal Kombat on Super NES, where the excessive blood of the arcade release was removed in the West; on SEGA's system a code — which could be rapidly learned on the playground or in gaming magazines — enabled the blood and the brutal finishing moves. Even titles you may not think have been amended have seen tweaks to preserve the innocence of audiences or, potentially, to avoid risks of controversy. If you see the intro to the Japanese version of Super Castlevania IV, the title screen is dripping blood and the opening scene tombstone has a cross — both were removed in the West.

There are more recent examples, too, that also show inconsistencies between Western territories. No More Heroes was a gore-fest in North America, with red blood splattered across the screen and dismemberment there for all to see. Yet in Europe and Japan the game came with a lower rating and blood was replaced with black particles — ash, perhaps? — while limbs very much stayed with their bodies, even when dismemberment was implied. We can move beyond violence to consider games that are absent due to religious themes — The Binding of Isaac was rejected for a 3DS release, as it is undoubtedly adult in its approach to controversial ideas and references. It's been published on Steam for PC and a remake is destined for Sony's systems, while its fate on Nintendo's systems seems unlikely to be resolved.

To return to nudity, or oblique sexual references as highlighted in the Fire Emblem: Awakening examples, there are inconsistencies. A woman's bum seems to be out of bounds, but barely concealed breasts are apparently fine in the same game, while Chrom can proudly show off his swimmer's build without a mysterious curtain appearing on screen. Yet Cordelia's almost-revealing image isn't a sign of modern times, when you consider the classic ending to Metroid; Samus Aran is revealed as a woman — hooray for feminine heroism — but the only issue is that speed-runners are rewarded with an image of our hero in a bikini. We're pretty sure she could have been shown as a woman without stripping down to under-garments, but that was the approach taken. Modern Samus, in Metroid: Other M, at least wears a zero suit that's more sensible layering when battling monsters dressed in powerful armour. Despite that, the less said about Team Ninja's teenage-boy approach to designing Samus' physique, the better.


It's a funny old game world for us Nintendo fans, with Europeans being preserved from "boingy bits" or worldwide players avoiding a loss of innocence that a swim-suit bum can bring. We've been spared dripping blood and gore, sometimes in the name of family values and on other occasions to simply get a lower age rating at retail; as our Soul Blade example shows, Nintendo console games aren't the only ones to be censored. Some examples that we haven't even covered perhaps make sense — such as the removal of Nazi references in some titles such as Wolfenstein 3D — but it's all objective.

Inconsistency is really the word, though, and there are perhaps still examples of Nintendo playing the safety card rather than letting an M-rating do its work. Either way, it can all be a bit confusing, but great for pub quizzes. Wait, is it cool for us to say reference a pub?

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User Comments (91)

Yamagushi

#1

Yamagushi said:

Instead of censoring they could always I donno, stop marketing sex to kids.. It's insane how sexually charged some of the nintendo titles I've seen lately are.

bahooney

#5

bahooney said:

I always find it a little embarrassing when I'm playing a game around friends or the girlfriend, and some boingy bit show up seemingly out of nowhere. Totally inappropriate, and I feel like I'm getting too old for that stuff. If I wanted to see pixelated boobs I wouldn't have friends over and I'd dim the lights.

k8sMum

#6

k8sMum said:

to be fair: chron's bum is neither well toned nor impressive. if it's weren't for the symbol it wouldn't be noticed.

SpaceKappa

#7

SpaceKappa said:

Poison from Final Fight was always transgender (or "newhalf," as the slightly-offensive Japanese term). Look it up!

Dpullam

#8

Dpullam said:

I really don't see nudity in video games as a big deal but I can imagine that some uninformed parents unknowingly would buy a game that contained such content for their children without checking the box first.

As for censoring certain video games, I believe some developers prefer to blur certain scenes so that they can still illustrate their point but without becoming too pornographic, though I will admit that in some instances, it only makes the material worse. I think sexuality will continue to increase in video games over the course of time just as it has in movies for one simple reason. Sex sells.

Sinister

#10

Sinister said:

The cover art for Dead or Alive Dimensions on the 3DS is another prime example.
In the US it was censored so Kasumi's thigh is covered up.

Shiryu

#11

Shiryu said:

Man, I lived all of these and even when I was a kid I knew this is ridiculous. "Super Castlevania IV" goes beyond the title screen. In the west they also covered every naked statue with a sheet, while the blood on stage 3 was repainted green (looks like slime in our versions). But Konami did manage to sneak boss Medusa's half naked torso by western censors, up to this day I have no clue how her pixelated bare chest was ok but the stone figures were not ok... censuring art is wrong, just wrong.

Morpheel

#12

Morpheel said:

@k8smum: strangely enough , Chrom is featured in the infamous "twisted" pose, which is usually used to show off female boingy bits and lower bits at the same time. That means they wanted you to notice his bum.

Beta

#14

Beta said:

I am proud of Nintendo for trying to be family friendly till this age where everything and everyone tries to be "mature." I mean, what do people gain when they find "boingy bits" and gore everywhere in video games? If they weren't there it wouldn't matter in the first place and more people can enjoy it.

Nintenjoe64

#15

Nintenjoe64 said:

What happened to Jack Thompson? He was the biggest idiot in the gaming world at the start of the last gen and now people seem to care more about Michael Pachter.

Manhunt 2 deserved a mention seeing as it was allowed by Nintendo but not by the BBFC.

k8sMum

#16

k8sMum said:

i used to belong to an art site that decided absolutely no nudity was going to be allowed. i don't do many nudes/partial nudes, but i had to remove 2 pieces. one was voted 'most favourite' by an old poll i did on my own art site. it's called 'dancing neath the irish sea' and features a mermaid with celtic symbols. she is topless. the owners of the site told me i could pixelate her breasts. it would have ruined the piece. (it was an ACEO). i understood their new rules and wished them well but choose to leave.

grotesquely huge breasts on females in video games repel me: they are objectification at its worst. these are at least treating both sexes somewhat the same. do 2 wrongs make a right? i don't know.

i just want to play good games.

@Philip_J_Reed lol. my work here is done. ;-)

DarkKirby

#17

DarkKirby said:

I am against censorship of any type. Censorship is pandering to ignorance and the desire for people to be ignorant. The best way to handle any situation is not to hide things, but to educate people about them.

The biggest example from Nintendo I can think of is Vivian from Paper Mario: Thousand Year Door's gender was changed from a male with the appearance of a female (and desire to be female) to a straight female because Nintendo of America figured people wouldn't "understand" or "be offended" by the idea, while the concept is used quite loosely in Japan and it isn't considered controversial as there isn't even any kind of debate on gay marriage because in Japan they don't care about that.

However Japan does have some kind of odd censorship laws for video games in particular to red blood. Not all kinds of media, as bloody deaths are not too uncommon even for anime targeted for younger audiences, but video games in particular.

MetalKingShield

#18

MetalKingShield said:

Personally, I'm against violence/gore and in favour of sex/nudity, but it doesn't really matter which ones you like or dislike. Everything should have the correct rating and be correctly described, that's the point. They should not have censored Fire Emblem, they should have just given it the correct rating and written "Suggestive Themes" on it. That way, if any parents honestly think the female form is harmful, they can avoid it, and the rest of us can enjoy the art that it is.

HeatBombastic

#19

HeatBombastic said:

@MetalKingShield Fire emblem does have "Mild Suggestive themes" on its rating. If it's suggestive themes, that means they're going further with it. And then there's Sexual content, which I think means going all out with the "boingy bits"

Waann

#20

Waann said:

It's pretty well-known, but my "favourite" instance of nonsensical censorship happens in Link's Awakening. In the Japanese version, a nude hippo model has her breasts exposed, and a sheet is covering her lower body. In the western versions, she no longer has breasts, but the sheet is gone too, so she's completely naked. What. : |

@k8sMum, that's too bad. It's all the more disappointing for an art site, as you can't really learn anatomy without ever looking at naked people in your life... I've looked at your ACEO, it's beautiful (and honestly harmless).

Nudity is natural, the human form is beautiful, and it's the constant censoring of it that causes people to always conflate it with sexual themes, even when it's unwarranted (and anyway, there's nothing wrong with sex. Without it, we wouldn't be here to talk about this, would we?).

Prof_Elvin_Gadd

#21

Prof_Elvin_Gadd said:

That video made me laugh! No sexy curvy looking girl would be bathing with a white t-shirt on. Only fat people do that... ;) Seriously though, I think America takes the censorship a little too far. (As do many other countries) We are humans, we have bodies with breasts and butts and vaginas and penis'. We were brought into this world naked. Some people wonder why they end up so screwed when it comes to relationships and sex. It's because of all this censorship and those who tell us that it is wrong to enjoy the human body.

I've discussed this somewhere before, but there was a time that Europeans decided enjoying the human body wasn't civilized. A long, long time ago mind you, before America as we know it today. It's time to knock that theory of thought out of our minds. Let people do what they like and see what they want as long as it doesn't physically harm a person (that doesn't want to be physically harmed).

shinokami

#22

shinokami said:

IMO the attempted censoring made the picture a little more suggestive, so for those with imagination I think it was a win situation

DualWielding

#23

DualWielding said:

censorship sucks there is a point to be made about gender equality and excessive sexualization of women in video games but that does not apply to the fire emblem case as the pictures show it was equal opportunity sexualization... Plus the company that's build its empire on people on men rescuing damsels on distress can hardly claim to be a champion of gender rights

Wheels2050

#24

Wheels2050 said:

Personally, I think this sort of thing is ridiculous. It isn't the job of the video game publisher to decide what an audience can or can't see. The job of the various ratings systems is to look at a game, determine if there is possible objectionable content and let the consumer know. It's then up to the consumer to decide whether or not they want to see whatever the game contains.

In addition, as you say, at the end of the day 'objectionable content' means different things to different people - thus, censorship will be a subjective process, subject to the cultural and personal values of the censor. This doesn't necessarily translate to how others feel, and so censorship is certainly a process fraught with apparent inconsistencies and bad decisions (from certain points of view).

Basically, I disagree with the kinds of censorship discussed in the article. I'm old enough to decide if I want to look at naked people, violence, hear strong language etc. If parents are doing their jobs, they are able to decide what their children have access to. It isn't the place of the video game publisher to make those decisions for us.

This is a broader issue than simply Nintendo, too - Australia only recently allowed R18+ games to be sold here, despite having that category in other forms of media. Several high-profile games were denied release as a result, which was of great annoyance to many Australian gamers for the reason I've given above - we should be the ones determining what we want to see/play/listen to.

zipmonStaff

#25

zipmon said:

@k8sMum =O Chrom is smokin' in that pic!

Sidenote: I would buy a pair of those trunks in a heartbeat. Club Nintendo reward perhaps?

Back on topic, I think changing anything in games from one market to another tends to comes off as a bit silly in hindsight (no pun intended), whether that's altering art like in Fire Emblem, turning blood to ash in No More Heroes, or "localizing" the concept (see: early Persona games with Americanized characters). That said, I think I'd have enjoyed No More Heroes just as much if not more without the blood - if I bought my games by ESRB descriptions I'd take "Suggestive Themes" over "Blood and Gore" any day of the week.

TwilightV

#28

TwilightV said:

A few points:

-I don't think it's too bad right now here in the US. We still get plenty of blood and stuff.

The breast issue could be worse. 4Kids censored breasts by making mature female characters completely flat chested, which I personally thought was really offensive.

-I somehow doubt Samus' design in Other M was entirely TN's doing.

-In Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door's Japanese version, it's implied that Vivian of the Shadow Sirens is a male. So there's another example of that.

MasterWario

#29

MasterWario said:

@Waann As much as you may have a point there, original sin will find a way to mess things up, real bad. The human body is good, but people will try and abuse it.

nomeacuerdo

#31

nomeacuerdo said:

Won't somebody think of the poor developers that have to deal with this stupid nonsense?

If I developed a game, and some idiot told me that "that girl can't be on a bikini, cover her up" it would piss me off. What do you expect to see in the beach? being fully covered with a blanket or what?

Zombie_Barioth

#32

Zombie_Barioth said:

I understand Nintendo's side to some extent, after all they're known as a familty-friendly company and need to uphold certain standards to remain as such but there comes a point where enough is enough. For some reason this industry can't seem to hold itself accountable and has no clue how to handle public perception. A lot of peoples' problems with these "issues" stems from the pressures of society. We're taught from a young age that these things are wrong and shameful, they're not treated as just another fact of life.

Now I personnaly don't have a problem with these sort of touchy subjects when handled tastfully and not used simply to appear "edgy" or controversal. Its embarrassing enough to see a scene pop up that could be taken out of context by someone who has know idea whats going on but its even worse when the developers or publishers treat it like a joke themselves. Take Team Ninja for example, Dead or Alive is an otherwise great franchise but its just down right embarrassing hearing them brag about state of the art "boob physics" in their games let alone actually being known for such a thing.

zeldazero

#34

zeldazero said:

@Yamagushi
Sorry to say but when it comes to marketing sex to kids...really...? Every child in the world has internet enabled devices and can see all the nudity and sex they want at the press of a button. Like any situation, it is up to the parents to protect kids from things they dont want them to see. This isn't the 60's, sex is everywhere, even on non-cable tv shows. It may not show straight up nudity or sex but it is implied. Everything, even tv shows start with a warning. Whats funny is you don't see the fact that every country in the world but the U.S. shows nudity on everything.

BakaKnight

#35

BakaKnight said:

I like how the word inconsistency keep been repetead in the article cause that's how censorship always seemed to work everywhere and in everymedia.
It's really really hard to understand censorship when for every case where it was used you can easily find a similar case where it wasn't applied @O@;

Wii_Win

#36

Wii_Win said:

I mean, they can remove it if they want, but let's make this discussion more interesting and pretend that this effects the gameplay.
If this stuff did, I would keep it just based on that it's already rated T, assuming people listen to the ESRB (I don't) then theoretically if anyone really felt like being cautious, they would be fine.

As it actually stands I'm pretty indifferent, probably slightly leaning towards removing it just so nintendo doesn't get angry emails.

placidcasual

#37

placidcasual said:

The old final fantasy games had all their pubs turned into cafes, especially amusing when people were running about presumably totally wasted on all that coffee...

Suicune

#39

Suicune said:

I think people of any age should be able to play games with nudity/or sexual things. The body is beautiful.

that was not cool. please go be disgusting elsewhere — TBD
Sorry.

Suicune

#41

Suicune said:

@zeldazero "Whats funny is you don't see the fact that every country in the world but the U.S. shows nudity on everything."

Woah, woah. We don't have it that bad. Have you ever been to Australia?

ArkOne77

#43

ArkOne77 said:

This is why there are ESRB / PEGI rating systems.......and parents who pay attention to what content they are buying for their kids.....

Waann

#44

Waann said:

If you don't think healthy children's entertainment with nudity is possible, check the Kirikou movies. (GASP, bare breasts!) Incidentally, I think some American theaters refused to screen them for this very reason. Nothing sexual in them, of course.

Children don't give a poop about nudity. Only their parents do. And keep in mind there are/have been many cultures where the naked body is not considered "dirty". It's mostly a completely Western concept.

Neram

#46

Neram said:

It's kind of funny there's an article about this right now, because just last week I was debating with friends about this very thing. It got me thinking about this while I was playing Duke Nukem 64, which I recently acquired as it's been years since I've played it. One thing I noticed was that in the PC version there are girls hanging upside down that are topless and wearing underwear.

Well in the N64 version, Eurocom (I'm suspecting), instead of covering up the sprite's breasts with a bikini they actually replaced it with complete mutilation and dismemberment. The sprite was split in half, with her spine hanging out and just guts were the breasts were.

It was actually far more disturbing and bothersome than naked breasts could ever be. What I don't get is the backwards mentality that society has where gore and mutilation is okay but some sexual suggestion is immoral and wrong.

bonesy91

#47

bonesy91 said:

For the fire emblem censorship I must say it was idiotic and has started a fire that would have never came into being :p

And not everyone's mind is in the gutter...

Jaz007

#48

Jaz007 said:

When the human body is uncovered, it is almost always seen as sexy, not beautiful. Which leads to lusting and that leads to objectification, not art.

Slapshot

#50

Slapshot said:

I'm offended by the complete lack of feet in Fire Emblem: Awakening. What the heck does Nintendo have against people having feet anyway?

Zaphod_Beeblebrox

#51

Zaphod_Beeblebrox said:

@Slapshot
According to an interview, they had to simplify the animation models for performance reasons. So they removed the ankle joint (and therefore the feet).

C7_

#54

C7_ said:

I think Nintendo should just bring the stuff over without changing anything but the text unless it is truly offensive when translated (like a true translation of a word would lead to a derogatory term in another location). But this is what we have ratings for, and indeed ratings that take these into account. As far as I'm concerned, censoring trivial things like this is utterly pointless. The developers/artists put it in there for fanservice and most the time as a reward for finding an easter egg or doing particularly well, and it's frankly insulting when these things are found out. What, we non-japanese folk would be offended by someone in a swimsuit? Have these developers not seen American TV, where sex scandals and cleavage shots are reported AS NEWS? No one important cares.

If you're personally offended by a picture of a lady in a swimsuit that shows no naughty bits and is on screen for a few seconds then maybe you should read the rating provided ON THE BOX and understand what "Suggestive themes" means, that is why they are there after all. And even further, if you bought this T-M rated game for your 6 year-old and complain about its maybe you should learn to read and maybe even acquire some common sense, and if not contact child services.

cgh

#55

cgh said:

next thing you know peach is gonna get naked for mario when he saves her and samus is gonna be a striper.

timp29

#56

timp29 said:

I was always in awe of the animation of Cammy's jiggly bits in Street Fighter II - probably helped that I was a teenager at the time.

Geonjaha

#58

Geonjaha said:

@Yamagushi - But it's Japan!

Honestly I think censorship is over the top - but it's worsened by the fact that censorship in Japan is much more lenient. The fact that these shall we say 'saucy' pictures are being released for the FE:A fans just shows how Japan handles this stuff differently. Yes, we don't need stuff censored as much as it is, but to be honest Japan shouldn't have such a perverted approach to its advertising to consumers and fans.

WaxxyOne

#61

WaxxyOne said:

As with any good argument, there are good points on both sides of this one. Nintendo is in the business of keeping games on store shelves. If they know that game X would cause controversy in region Y, they have shown they aren't shy about taking steps to prevent it. Sometimes they go too far, but it's easy to see why they might adopt the strategy of "better safe than sorry" here.

On the other hand, I am a firm believer that the consumer should be allowed to decide exactly what they wish to tolerate for themselves and their children. Games which allow options to limit blood and gore work great for me — I can choose to tone it down so my child can participate, or leave it on to experience the author's original vision. If the only version I'm allowed to use in my region has had the censorship hammer taken to it, that might upset me — of course it's all based on how important the censored content is to the work as a whole. As with all things, whether censorship can be seen as appropriate or not is all based on the situation.

However in general, I would hope that responsible adults would care enough to make an informed decision, then decide themselves what they want to see. Unfortunately, in the West and especially in the US we have a large portion of the population that has adopted the attitude that they should be allowed to tell everyone else what is and isn't appropriate for them. That doesn't seem likely to change any time soon.

LightSuitGuy

#62

LightSuitGuy said:

@Jaz007 I wholeheartedly agree. That's why censorship still exists, because nudity is always seen as sexual nowadays. How many times when you were younger and starting to learn about the birds and the bees, did you ever at one point see a scantily clad woman and think, "wow she's beautiful." Or did you act like the other 99.99% of boys growing up and think "man she's HOT!"

Gridatttack

#64

Gridatttack said:

Its funny how ATLUS has been going away with things not having ridiculously censorship (or not having any at all from the japanese version), and when nintendo does it, a huge fuzz is made.

DarkLloyd

#65

DarkLloyd said:

This is only a big deal because you would let yourself think it is or someone has conditioned you to believe so then you proceed to continue this censorship war legacy for them

Anyways this shouldn't be a problem if you take the time to actually teach your kids that it isn't instead of being busy etc etc i know i will if i ever do they can be expose and i will tell them its either right,wrong or simply the way of life which alot of adults or few in particular on here seems to refuse to do

MrL1193

#66

MrL1193 said:

Although I agree that consumers have a responsibility to use their own discretion, I really can't fault Nintendo for wanting to make things easier on them. Over time, people get used to thinking of certain franchises as being appropriate for such-and-such an audience--such as assuming that most Nintendo franchises are safe for little kids. It's nice to have a certain "safe zone" where you don't have to worry about this kind of thing. Suddenly adding "questionable" content to a formerly "safe" series or significantly upping the severity of it where it used to be mild would seem like a kind of mean thing to do without warning. So no, I don't think that censorship is necessarily a bad thing; in some ways, it's just being courteous to the consumers.

Also, I can't help noticing that a lot of people seem to object to the way OTHER regions handle censorship. I'm not sure I quite like that. If your culture disapproves of violence but doesn't mind nudity, that's fine for you, but do you really have to complain about the way OTHER regions censor their games to suit different cultural values? They're not expecting YOU to play the game in the form they're releasing to their region, you know. As long as people get their games in the form they like in their own region, I don't think there's much cause to complain.

Waann

#67

Waann said:

@MrL1193 This is a general discussion on censorship, not one only about the "Tharja incident", and censorship on Japanese games generally affects all non-Japanese regions.

Ren

#68

Ren said:

this kind of thing won't really change until the game development and computer science world in general isn't such a sausage fest. to be Chicken and egg about it, this stuff doesn't help that either.

Taya

#69

Taya said:

I don't like censorship, but it would be nice if there was less nudity/near-nudity in video games altogether. It turns women away from video games and makes men look like horny 13-year-olds.

I always hear the argument that "sex sells" but did you know you can get porn for free from the internet instead of buying a $50 game featuring cleavage? It's true! There's money in your pocket.

MrL1193

#71

MrL1193 said:

@Waann I don't remember specifically mentioning that incident? I'm sure it was one of the things that sparked this discussion, but I was speaking about Nintendo's censorship as a whole.

And with regard to the regional differences, I was mainly referring to the differences between America and Europe, since some people who have commented here don't seem to respect the other region's standards. I'm sure the Japanese standards influence a lot of what we get as well, but probably more in the actual creation process rather than in changes to the final product. If we were talking about games developed in the west, things might be different.

StarDust4Ever

#72

StarDust4Ever said:

Conker's Bad Fur Day still made the cut though. I'm still amazed Nintendo let that game squeak by given it's track record.

ToxieDogg

#73

ToxieDogg said:

Nintendo are weird. They censor that Fire Emblem image, yet they're happy to make Samus Aran look like a slut in the 'good' endings for most of the Metroid games. :D

AtomicToaster

#74

AtomicToaster said:

You have to show id just to buy an m rated game, this is stupid anymore. More nudity would be nice all gore and no sex is dull!

Waann

#75

Waann said:

@MrL1193 I know you didn't mention it--I did because it's the only instance of Europeans criticizing American censorship I've seen here (correct me if I'm wrong). Generally, censorship is the same in both regions.

As a translator (not in the field of video games), the idea of censoring a work to make it comply with your own territory's values sounds completely unethical to me. A translator is supposed to serve the author and the consumers--censorship is disrespectful to both (it assumes the author didn't know what he was doing and you know better, and it underestimates the consumer's open-mindedness). A translator is supposed to bring the reader to another culture, not adapt that culture to their (supposed) tastes. We normally don't censor foreign books, movies, paintings or other cultural goods (even when the originals are offensive/completely stupid to many people), so why do it to video games? The answer is probably that it's a young medium and that publishers do their best to comply with local ratings boards, when those boards don't really know what they're doing (especially PEGI). Understandable. Not to mention they're much more strict than those that deal with other media, because games are still considered more harmful than them and because "games are for kids".

So yeah. Even when a series goes from an epic tactical game to a bad dating sim overnight, censorship is still wrong IMO.

AtomicToaster

#76

AtomicToaster said:

Im pretty sure boingy bits is in the bible somewhere! If it isn't there's everything else that happens in the bible too!

Ichiban

#77

Ichiban said:

Im playing through Nier atm and one of the characters Kaine gets around the whole game in a way too short nightie, leggings, and a g-string! She has quite the foul mouth too!

banacheck

#78

banacheck said:

I think it comes down to games on Nintendo systems are just that still games, the Mario games are not made for adults but for children just like Nintendo Land & many other games on the Nintendo system. Where as Sony's & Microsoft systems are catered towards adults also, which you can see by the total different in games on both systems. Of course when you mature things like this have no concern as your life fades into reality,the fact that they chosen the words " Boingy Bits" shows the platform is still immature, hence that Nintendo systems made for children & teens.

Scollurio

#80

Scollurio said:

ANY form of censorship is wrong, don't let the industry do the parenting, that's what parents are for (hence the name). Just make sure it's labelled correctly.
Saying that I don't OK senseless violence or sex-scenes, but welcome them if they are in context of the material. Same goes for any form of art or media, be it videogames, movies, music, ... censorship is just wrong. Educate people and everything is fine.

Einherjar

#81

Einherjar said:

@PinkSpider Because Fire Emblem is way more popular and therefore, gets way more atention.

My two cents: Isnt something even more interesting, if its forbidden ? If you educate your kids well enough you shouldnt need to cover up "boingy bits" with a big STOP sign, Shouldnt any decent intelligent person be aware that breasts are "normal" and therefore, not a big nono ? I find it funny and ironic, that games get censored all the time, but television is allowed to go all out (go see game of thrones, its basicly LotR meets softcore porn). And dont get me started on all the girls whoring out in social media sites... Showing that a female videogame character has, how shocking, female anatomy is a huge problem, but other media is allowed to implant the thought "sex gets you everywhere" in our minds is absolutely fine... Sometimes i feel so lonely by beeing sexually open minded...

Cesco

#83

Cesco said:

Yesterday I purchased and played Fire Emblem for the first time. I was playing at around 23:00 / 11pm and I choose to visit a hall. Suddently all the characters of the game, one by one, suggest me that it was late and perhaps I should go to sleep instead of playing !!!

I can decide by myself when I want to go to bed... I'm not a child anymore, Nintendo !

WaveyChristmas

#84

WaveyChristmas said:

I've always wanted to play the original 'A Boy & his Boobs' It's heart breaking knowing that the developers didn't have the Groovy guts to release what they had originally intended. Probably the biggest NES letdown.

Now, if I could have any videogame character spring to life, it would no doubt be Cammie from Street Fighter.
I wouldn't mind being straddled by those big thunderish meaty pixel legs.lol

Haywired

#85

Haywired said:

I remember performing B. Orchid's boingy fatality from Killer Instinct when I was 10...

In fact, Killer Instinct was the only game I remember my parents (who were generally very cool about such things, but then I suppose it was easier back then as games obviously weren't as realistic) showed concern. I remember my Dad walked in the room when I was performing Fulgore's machine gun fatality with my little cousins. He didn't look entirely happy about it...

Schprocket

#87

Schprocket said:

@Thomas I would've gone with "naughty bits" myself but then it may confuse those who don't know about the Kenny Everett Show from the 80's... :)

andreoni79

#88

andreoni79 said:

In Fire Emblem Awekening, the final boss in chapter 9 is called "Campari"!!!
What were they thinking? :)

Araknie

#89

Araknie said:

Depends on rating.
Really.
In america T=Teen, so any person under 17 can buy that game, in Europe that PEGI translates that with 12+.

You can check the last Fire Emblem game on 3DS if you don't believe me.

In Japan you got another rating, UK, Australia all countries with different rating, it's only to be expected to have different censoring in releases.

You can't complain if you don't act source wise, Worldwide Rating System or this will continue to happen, it's so obvious.

Balaclavab

#90

Balaclavab said:

I think it is often unnecessary.
I've always found the 'hot spa' scenes in the Tales Of series rather funny, and it would be a shame if these were censored in the future, or were removed for western releases.

LGG11

#91

LGG11 said:

blaaa...blaaaa...blaaaaa... censorship sucks.... nintendo is too family friendly as it is... freedom of expression... if u don't want your kids to play those video games then don't. Also Pokemon X and Y is a great example of over censorship and hypocrisy... I can not even name my zigzagoon "Spike" yet other players online name there characters (things I should not speak of). anyways, this issue can not be controlled without brain wash, therefore this issue will never be resolved peacefully, or at least happily. Good day.
Feel free to remove me or this post I really don't care. Only signed up because this article was complete nonsense.

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