Australia backtracks on Outlast 2 ban despite “implied sexual violence”

Outlast 2

Update March 23, 2017: The Australian classifications board have reversed their decision to ban upcoming horror game Outlast 2 in the country, instead opting for an R 18+ rating.

The game was previously denied certification due to a specific scene, though it seems it’s now being allowed through unmodified. 

Related: here are all the upcoming PC games

This comes after the classifications board conducted a review of their original decision.

“Outlast 2 has been rated R18+ by the Classification Branch in Australia and will be released [April 26],” said developers Red Barrels in a statement to Press Start. “There will be only one version of Outlast 2 available worldwide.”

The ratings board pageshows the game has strong themes, violence, and sex.

Original Story March 16, 2017: Outlast 2 has been refused classification in Australia because of a specific scene in the upcoming horror title. That means it won’t be available to buy in the country – unless it’s censored, of course.

Hotline Miami 2 was banned in the country for a scene that depicted similar.

Classification refusal can be given to games that “depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified”, according to the ratings board website.

In the case of Hotline Miami 2, publishers Devolver Digital didn’t bother censoring the game to release in Australia after being refused classification. Likewise, for Outlast 2 developers Red Barrels – perhaps on the word of new publisher Warner Bros – it will be down to them whether they want to modify the game’s content and have another go or not.

The scene in question does sound pretty gross, but I’m all for developers releasing games that are true to their vision. Of course, we’re just as free to criticise it if it turns out to be awful. If you want to know exactly what happens in the scene, Kotaku Australia have the report.