January 8th, 2008

Manhunt 2 was never submitted for classification in Australia

Published at 11:50 PM PST

A few weeks ago, we reported that the gaming website, MyWii.com.au, told us that the date for Manhunt 2 being released was 31st of December 2007, now 8 days later; the game hasn’t hit our shores. Sadly, we already knew they were wrong in the first place. Before Christmas one of our staff members, Dazza, contacted the OFLC (Australian Classification Board) asking the question of why Manhunt 2 had not been released, let allow rated in Australia even after two months of the US having the game. After the news of Grand Theft Auto IV’s rating broke out we felt this was an issue that should be followed up, we were hoping for at least a proper release date or some reason for why we had heard nothing about the game hitting Australian shores.

Manhunt 2 not given to the OFLC for classification

To our surprise, Dazza received a reply within only a few days. As it turns out the OFLC hasn't actually received the game for rating from Rockstar yet.

I can confirm that the computer game Manhunt 2 has not been submitted to the Board for classification.

So Manhunt 2 isn't effectively banned in Australia yet. The response also suggests that they are expecting the game to be submitted for classification:

It is not possible to speculate on what the Board will classify this game once it is submitted for classification.

This means that Rockstar haven’t given Australia the chance to embrace the art that might be Manhunt 2, why? The first Manhunt game was banned in Australia, however the UK is in the same vote, they also banned the first Manhunt so it can't be simply that they believe it will be banned straight out. One scenario  it that, let's say the BBFC (UK's Classification Board) refused to classify Manhunt 2 before it was shipped to Australia for classification by the OFLC. Then it may have been seen by Rockstar that Australia would follow the BBFC and also refuse it's classification in the Australian Region, thus halted shipping and classification until the BBFC situation was dealt with.

They suggested lastly that we contact Rockstar directly for a likely release date on the game. We're still waiting on a reply from Rockstar at the moment...

You can see copies of the response from the OFLC here: Image | Document | PDF

Thank you to Dazza for finding this.