Fallout 3 banned in Australia because of drugs

Written by Joe Martin

August 13, 2008 | 11:49

Tags: #australia #ban #banned #fallout-3 #manhunt-2

Companies: #bbfc #bethesda

Fallout 3 was recently certified for a general released, with the notable excpetion being that the game was refused certification in Australia and was essentially banned as a result.

Now, the Australian version of the game has been edited to fit with the wishes of the certification board and will be seeing a release in Australia after all, but one thing which has remained unclear is exactly why the game was refused classification in the first place. There are a number of edgy issues featured in the game judging from what we saw in our Fallout 3 hands-on preview, but Bethesda hasn't commented on whether it was the cannibalism, genocide or gore which got the game in trouble down under.

Kotaku however has managed to unearth the truth from the Office of Film and Literature Classification directly and it turns out that the reason the game was banned was because of how certain drugs were represented in the game.

Or rather, a drug.

A review of the edited version of the game remarks on the fact that the various drugs available to the player throughout the game are all entirely fictional, entirely contextual and presented in such a way that there is no obligation put on the player to use them. There are rewards naturally for dosing up on Jet or Psycho , but penalties also present themselves as players become addicted too.

This review of the edited version therefore implies that morphine has been edited out of the game, as this features prominently in other versions of the game and is clearly not a fictional or sci-fi drug. By editing out the inclusion of morphine and leaving in all the fictional drugs, Bethesda has been able to meet the Australian requirements.

All the drugs in the Australian game are now only referred to as 'Chems' and are presented using stylised icons which do not show the drug itself or how it is used. Versions of the game available in other areas will be presented as they were originally intended.

What's your opinion on how Fallout 3 is shaping up? What do you think of the censors decision? Let us know what you reckon in the forums.
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