According to IGN Australia, the Australian Classification Board, the equivalent of the ESRB in the United States, will decide to refuse classification for Mortal Kombat (2011). One of IGN's sources stated they received an e-mail stating that the game will "not be released in Australia. The e-mail added that the decision might be overturned in the future, but these steps were currently necessary."
Since the end of last year, there have been three games that I have been hyped about. In order, they are:
1. King of Fighters XIII
2. Marvel vs Capcom 3
3. Mortal Kombat 2011
Apparently, I can't fulfil want number three, because the Office of Film and Literature Classification deems it 'unsuitable for viewing by minors'. This is just further proof that Australia should get with the times and instate an R18+ classification for video games. The lack of an adult video game rating is ridiculous, as it allows adults to be treated like children, and children to be treated like adults.
Here's what WBIE has to say on the matter:
WBIE would not market mature content where it is not appropriate for the audience. We understand that not all content is for every audience, but there is an audience for mature gaming content and it would make more sense to have the R18+ classification in Australia. As a member of the iGEA, WBIE is reviewing all options available at this time.
And another from Ron Curry, CEO of the Interactive Games & Entertainment Association:
It is the industry position that an adult classification sends a clear message to the public that the content is not suitable for minors and is the most effective means of guiding access to mature content. Refusing classification of titles that meet adult rating criteria in every other Western country in our digital age is ineffective and naïve.
The game itself seems to be very highly anticipated. Refusing the game classification will result in even greater popularity generation ('Woah, this game's been banned in a whole CONTINENT? It must be pretty good!), which, in Australia, can lead to either the importation or piracy of the game, which is encouraging those who really want the game to commit a crime in order to perpetuate access to illegal content. All of that continues to prove the notion of 'resistance is futile'.
From what I have gathered from the government web page for the OFLC, the only time classifications are enforced on video games is when they are in stores. At home, they are simply recommendations - information provided to consumers pertaining to the content contained in the media they may be purchasing. By deeming the game as 'unfit for viewing by minors', that is making a decision for every parent in Australia. However, making those decisions should be left to the parents, because that is one of the biggest parts of being a parent - making decisions that will benefit your children. I know for a fact that most Australian parents are far from lazy, so why is the government treating them like retarded, lazy rednecks? Are we no longer able to think for ourselves? What the government needs to understand is that over-policing the country in a manner such as this creates more problems than it resolves. They do not need to think for us.
I'm going to be writing an essay on why Australia should have an R18+ rating for video games, and I will be sending it to newspapers, news programmes, my local MP and likely publishing it on the internet. If you guys have any input, then it is appreciated. I want to show how much the Australian (and international) public supports the idea of having an adult rating for their video games, so that as gamers, they may finally be treated as adults.