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Rockstar Forces Reconsideration of Manhunt 2 in UK 31

boot1973 writes "Rockstar has won an appeal which forces the BBFC to look again at the ban that it issued against Manhunt 2. The BBC reports: 'The game could now go on sale, if the BBFC, which is "considering the judgement", takes no further action. In a statement, Rockstar said: "We are committed to making great interactive entertainment, while also marketing our products responsibly and supporting an effective rating system.'"
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Rockstar Forces Reconsideration of Manhunt 2 in UK

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  • It's just a game. I like this.
  • by faloi ( 738831 ) on Tuesday December 11, 2007 @10:03AM (#21654825)
    1. Write crappy game 2. Get lots of publicity for crappy game. 3. ???? 4. Profit!
    • by mdwh2 ( 535323 ) on Tuesday December 11, 2007 @10:26AM (#21655099) Journal
      That may be, but crap or not - I say they still deserve publicity if they are willing to stand up to Government censorship.

      Even if profit is their real motive, it's a gamble - remember that this isn't about age ratings (like in every other western country where they don't have such stupid censorship laws), the current situation is that no adult can legally buy the game.

      And some MPs think things should go further - a recent proposed bill [next-gen.biz] suggested allowing MPs to overrule the BBFC when it approves media for release, if they decide that the material is unsuitable for us adults to view.
      • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

        by DrXym ( 126579 )
        That may be, but crap or not - I say they still deserve publicity if they are willing to stand up to Government censorship.

        You make it sound so noble. In reality, they can't sell their game unless it gets rated. Without a rating they can't release it. Without a rating no console would even certify it. Even with a rating I doubt it will ever make a profit although it might allow them to claw back some losses, assuming any store bothers to stock it.

        It's their own stupid fault for producing this game in th

        • But the GP, was complaining of government censorship. It is of course the right of a retailer to not carry an item, and the console company to refuse necessary licences for it to be released for their platform.
          But besides that even if you make the leap of faith that the government should have some powers to ban thing; it is improper for the government hiding behind a quasi-independent body to ban any single item. The proper way would to of been for the CPS to bring a procession against the company and peopl
        • "Censorship is not some new phenomenon, something that appeared after they started work on Manhunt 2."

          Funny, because Manhunt 1 was sold just fine.

          "It's a reality and should have been considered before they embarked on this money pit."

          It's a reality that NOBODY can buy the game, not just 18's. It's not fair. Even if it was 100% expected, that doesn't make it right.
          • Re: (Score:1, Flamebait)

            by DrXym ( 126579 )
            Funny, because Manhunt 1 was sold just fine.

            Manhunt 1 is not Manhunt 2 is it? And the BBFC isn't beholden to a past decision when making a future one, especially when it has publically stated its intent to be more strict on games.

            It's a reality that NOBODY can buy the game, not just 18's. It's not fair. Even if it was 100% expected, that doesn't make it right.

            Censorship is a commercial reality that anyone attempting to make a movie or game for profit has to recognize. If Rockstar chose to ignore ratin

            • "Manhunt 1 is not Manhunt 2 is it?"

              If this wasn't a sequel, Rockstar'd have less to bitch about.

              "If Rockstar chose to ignore ratings boards and subsequently got banned that's their own stupid fault. It's no good whining about the system as if it's being unfair."

              If the BBFC randomly changes its tolerance on violent games, that ain't Rockstar's fault. That actually is unfair.

              "As to whether censorship "right" or not, British laws is enacted by democratically elected representatives."

              Surely the democratic publ
              • by DrXym ( 126579 )
                If the BBFC randomly changes its tolerance on violent games, that ain't Rockstar's fault. That actually is unfair.

                It doesn't randomly change its tolerance. The current guidelines are a consequence of a period of public consultation and are adjusted every several years to remain in tune with public opinion. The original Manhunt would have been subject to earlier guidelines which may have since been tightened. The 2005 guidelines say explicitly "In the case of videos and DVDs, which may be more accessible t

                • "It doesn't randomly change its tolerance. ... " ...intervention may be more frequent. For the same reason, and because of the different way in which they are experienced, the Board may take a more precautionary approach in the case of those digital games which are covered by the Video Recordings Act."

                  Uh huh. It's very stable and predictable, unless you're making a video game, in which case, they're predictably and scientifically more 'precautionary'. That's why Rockstar was able to interpret these wonder
        • by mdwh2 ( 535323 )
          Without a rating they can't release it. Without a rating no console would even certify it.

          Without a rating, it isn't legal to sell it in the UK. This goes way beyond the certification issues in the US.

          But anyhow, that was my point - given that they have no chance of making any money if they can't sell it, I don't see how they can be accused of doing it to grab publicity and make a profit, as the OP suggested.

          It's their own stupid fault for producing this game in the first place. Censorship is not some new p
    • 1. Propose to ban violent games
      2. Give a lot of free publicity to some violent games through borderline censorship attempts.
      3. ???
    • You forgot the part where you generate tons of press over controversial content and then back down rather than defend the content, thus maximizing profit while damaging the artform.
  • Odd... (Score:2, Funny)

    by n0dna ( 939092 )
    "We are committed to making great interactive entertainment"

    Yet they keep releasing GTA and Manhunt games.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by somersault ( 912633 )
      I agree that Manhunt was awful (in gameplay terms), but the GTA games are pretty much the best I've ever played, doing several genres well, in a freeroaming environment, and getting better with every release. I fail to see what problems you could have with it unless you just think it is unethical
      • by n0dna ( 939092 )
        No, I'm actually a fan of "whatever makes you happy," it's just that GTA bored me to death. I don't find killing pixels to be unethical.

        First, you steal a car, then you drive it. Then to change things up, you steal a different car. "Woohoo."

        At least with III, the guns and fighting were so badly unbalanced it wasn't worth the effort of trying to have a shoot-out, so you were left with your choice of which identical feeling cars you wanted to steal.

        As for getting better, I couldn't tell you. With III so bad,
        • by n0dna ( 939092 )
          Sorry, that should have read:

          "This game has new dynamic (something), and unreal physics (random) with free-roaming (blahblah)."

          Slashdot stole my brackets.

        • Maybe you played the console version or something, I've only had the PC ones, so I've always found the gunfighting to be okay (mouse ftw :P ). The cars do have different handling, some are front wheel drive, some rear, some 4WD, I used to mess about with the vehicles in the original III but since then have just stuck to the built in versions. Seriously there have been good improvements on the series, mostly to do with the new types of vehicles like motorbikes, proper planes (none of your dodo crap thanks) a
      • by Hubbell ( 850646 )
        Manhunt 1 was awesome, but Manhunt 2 was NOT worth the $40 I paid for it. The game encourages you to ignore executions except when necessary for the story, just run in guns blazing most of the time. I'd ban it just for sucking so hard.
        • Manhunt 1 was made up of the same boring enemies over and over (at least in the levels that I played, I was utterly bored of it after a couple of days).. just increasing in number as you went through the game.. I just found it extremely dull compared to the FPSs I used to play all the time
          • by Hubbell ( 850646 )
            Almost all games are the same boring characters over and over. Would you consider Metal Gear Solid to be a boring game because of it? The gameplay was great in Manhunt 1, but in Manhunt 2 I didn't even bother with Sane difficulty (normal) and went straight to Insane (hard) and it basically encouraged me to just ignore executions which were plentiful in Manhunt 1 and instead go all gungho terminator style with the shotgun and uzi.
            • Yeah I dont really like MGS, but that's more because of the perspective. I'm not really a big stealth fan (in single player games at least.. because you know it's all just an elaborate puzzle game)
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by HiVizDiver ( 640486 )
      I actually THOROUGHLY enjoy the GTA games. Love the sandbox playstyle, and most have a decent enough plot to go along with them. Nothing award-winning, mind you, but engaging enough.

      Manhunt, OTOH... I played through about the first hour of the first one, and uninstalled it. I wasn't grossed out, or offended, or anything like that... It was slow, plodding, and ultimately, I didn't see the point. It was, as some have pointed out, violence simply for violence's sake, with no framework to support it.

  • I am just waiting for a 'Un-rated' version...this is probably why they want to get the game rated in every country before they come out with it. sounds conspiratorial, i know,but it is marketing
  • The ESRB rates video games not by playing them but by getting a video of important parts in the video game.

    Here is my thought experiment:
    What happens if you somehow got that same video that usually gets sent to the ESRB but instead had it sent to the movie rating group[1]? ( [1] Assuming that the movie rating group actually rates the movie and instead of ignoring it and not reviewing it. )

    My guess is that the movie rating people would not bat an eyelash at any video game like manhunt 2.
  • The summary talks about the BBFC incase you didn't know, BBFC stands for "British Board For Censorship".

    David Cooke has been the director for waaay too long, he is taking his job too seriously as the protector of UK adults. It's time he resigned and let someone who isn't an old git that doesn't understand this new fangled technology take over.
  • After all. This is noty my kind of game.

Each honest calling, each walk of life, has its own elite, its own aristocracy based on excellence of performance. -- James Bryant Conant