SEGA has won its appeal to have Aliens vs. Predator released in Australia, meaning the uncut version of the game will be released under the MA15+ rating. The title had previously been banned in Australia following the Classification Board’s declaration that the game was too violent for Australia’s maximum MA15+ rating and SEGA’s refusal to “sanitise”.
Developer Rebellion then wrote, “The content of AVP is based on some of the most innovative and iconic horror movies, and as such we wanted to create a title that was true to the source material. It is for adults, and it is bloody and frightening, that was our intent. We will not be releasing a sanitised or cut down version for territories where adults are not considered by their governments to be able to make their own entertainment choices.”
Speaking with ABC News, Australian Attorney General Michael Atkinson responded, saying, “You don’t need to be playing a game in which you impale, decapitate and dismember people.” On the subject of MA15+ he continued, “This is a question of a small number of very zealous gamers trying to impose their will on society. And I think harm society. It’s the public interest versus the small vested interest.”
Following Friday’s ruling, SEGA said in a statement to Kotaku, “We are particularly proud that the game will be released in its original entirety, with no content altered or removed whatsoever. This is a big win for Australian gamers. We applaud the Classification Review Board on making a decision that clearly considers the context of the game, and is in line with the modern expectations of reasonable Australians.”
AVP has been rated R18 in countries that have such a classification – including New Zealand. The ruling means that this especially violent title will be available to young Australians – the very result Australia’s refusal to implement an R18 rating was supposed to avoid.