Tuesday, October 9, 2007

A softer Manhunt 2 still banned in the U.K.

British game regulators on Monday, October 8th still banned a lighter version of the violent video game "Manhunt 2," they said "the changes didn't go far enough to alter the game's bleakness and callousness of tone."

The designer for Manhunt 2 said the decision is "a setback for video games."

Back in June, Take Two Interactive held off plans to release the video game — because the Entertainment Software Rating Board or ESRB rejected it in the United States as well as regulators in Europe, however two months later agreed to release the toned-down version.

The video game allows players to take the role of an "escapee from a mental institution who can go on a killing rampage."

The less-violent version eventually was accepted by the rating board in the U.S. and received a Mature rating, meaning people over the age of 17 are allowed to buy and play the video game. Manhunt 2 will be release on Halloween for PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable and the Nintendo Wii.

"The impact of the revisions on the bleakness and callousness of tone, or the essential nature of the game play, is clearly insufficient," stated British Board of Film Classification or BBFC director David Cooke.

The BBFC director said Take-Two and Rockstar Games had to resubmit an an even more toned-down version. Rockstar Games said it would appeal the changes.

"The changes necessary in order to publish the game in Britain are unacceptable to us and represent a setback for video games," Rockstar Games explained. "The BBFC allows adults the freedom to decide for themselves when it comes to horror in movies and we think adults should be similarly allowed to decide for themselves when it comes to horror in video games, such as Manhunt 2."

Europe's game rating system tends to be very strict when it comes to violence in video games but soft when it comes to sexuality, check on the article "US And Europe Video Game Rating System, Are They So Different?" to get a better understanding of the difference between the U.S. and Europe's game rating system.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Controversy over Manhunt 2

Manhunt 2
Controversy over Manhunt 2 spreads as Britain and Ireland have already censored the computer video game; and sales in the US look to be put on hold or restricted all together.

In New Your video game publisher Take-Two announced on Tuesday June 19th that it was temporarily suspending the release of the ultra violent computer video game "Manhunt 2" because of the ongoing rating issues faced in the United States and the the ban in Britain and Ireland.

Take-Two said int a statement that it need time to "reviews its options" but would "continue to stand behind this extraordinary game."

"We believe in freedom of creative expression, as well as responsible marketing, both of which are essential to our business of making great entertainment," Take-Tow explained.

The computer video game "Manhunt 2" had been scheduled for release on July 10th in the Untied States for both the Nintendo Wii and Playstation 2.

However critics are concerned with games' content, "which depicts escape of an amnesiac scientist and a psychotic killer from an asylum and their subsequent killing spree. In the Wii version, the consoles motion-sensitive remote is waved around to control a virtual murder weapon."

There is still skepticism on whether violent video games lead to violent behavior, but many big retailers, such as Wal-Mart, which accounts for 25 percent of U.S. computer video game sales, refuse to carry "Adults Only" titles.

This suspension was a setback for creator of Roskstar games, which came under fire for the popular "Grand Theft Auto" series of urban crime games, with Take-Tow earlier this year "underwent a shareholder coup that ousted its chief executive and nearly all of its board."

Take-Two has done very well for itself with last year revenues just over $1 billion, and with Manhunt 2 it is expected to generate around $40 million according to analysts, which suspension or setback can hurt Take-Two sales.

For Take-Two new management its goals are to rein in the creative talent and tell the video game industry that they are in the business of making money and to make games that sell not game that are artistically beautiful but not available at Wal-Mart. Agreed, if Take-Two or Rockstar or whatever company creates game that may look great but are to violent or have too much sexual content to be put on the selfs at Wal-Mart that need to reconsider how they create their games.