As announced by the BBFC today Manhunt 2 has been rejected classification meaning it is ineligible for release in its current form. The director of the BBFC, David Cooke, has issued the following statement trying to clear things up abit.
"Rejecting a work is a very serious action and one which we do not take lightly. Where possible we try to consider cuts or, in the case of games, modifications which remove the material which contravenes the Board’s published Guidelines. In the case of Manhunt 2 this has not been possible. Manhunt 2 is distinguishable from recent high-end video games by its unremitting bleakness and callousness of tone in an overall game context which constantly encourages visceral killing with exceptionally little alleviation or distancing. There is sustained and cumulative casual sadism in the way in which these killings are committed, and encouraged, in the game.
"Although the difference should not be exaggerated the fact of the game’s unrelenting focus on stalking and brutal slaying and the sheer lack of alternative pleasures on offer to the gamer, together with the different overall narrative context, contribute towards differentiating this submission from the original Manhunt game. That work was classified ‘18’ in 2003, before the BBFC’s recent games research had been undertaken, but was already at the very top end of what the Board judged to be acceptable at that category."
"Against this background, the Board’s carefully considered view is that to issue a certificate to Manhunt 2, on either platform, would involve a range of unjustifiable harm risks, to both adults and minors, within the terms of the Video Recordings Act, and accordingly that its availability, even if statutorily confined to adults, would be unacceptable to the public."
Whilst as things stand Manhunt 2 obviously won't be released in the UK, Rockstar will get the chance to appeal the decision and possibly change things within the game. It's happened in the past when PC hit Carmageddon had to change its content just to receive an 18 rating. BBFC? Player haters.
TBH I have to say I agree with this move in a way. Is there really any need for games like Manhunt? It's hard to justify the release of such violent and bloody games, I know plenty of games involve killing things but this is probably taking it a bit too far. The original game was decidedly average, only the hype surrounding the violence helped it gain any kind of fame.
I'm sure Rockstar will change things around to get a release, it's too much of a money spinner to not publish, but for once I think the BBFC have got things right.
How can the BBFC say that as an adult, I'm still not mature enough to play a game or watch a film.
How did they manage to play it themselves without going insane or starting a brutal serial killing rampage?
Stop this madness, censoring for children is important, no argument, but adults, no way!
is the bbfc the same as our US esrb? because if it is released in the US my psicotic freind might just be happy
Nah, the BBFC isn't quite the same thing as the ESRB, the BBFC is actually originally our film classification board, like MPAA. Their ratings are the law.
I'm pretty sure the game is getting a M18 rating in the US and will be released.
I agree with ReInstall, the BBFC shouldn't tell me what I can and can't play as an adult, they should just slap a 18 rating on it and be done with it, censorship is for the communists!
Whilst I'm usually completely against censorship, I think I am actually in favour in this very exceptional case.. but I'm still not sure.
It´s true that games don´t "happen" in the place we usually call "reality". But it´s still us, real human beings, who are playing these games. And we are part of the thing we call reality, as opposition to the "ficticious world". So we are the ones who form the link between reality and fiction. Even more: we create that fiction, then we immerse ourselves in it.
That being said, let´s try this from a more self-reflective standpoint:
Why do you like violence?
Why do you like to play violent games?
Why would you rather simulate violence actively yourself than just watching violence in a movie?
Why do people jump up joyously everytime a publisher announces "the goriest game ever"?
Why do you think a violent game is more fun than a non-violent game? (You haven´t even tried Manhunt 2, it might suck, from a pure quality standpoint)
If there´s no limit censorship is allowed to set: what about a game where you got rewarded for the main goal of raping and eating children? If someone programmed it and was trying to get it released, would that have to be released as well, without any form of censorship? In order to keep your freedom of choice intact?
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