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Australia Introduces R18+ Rating

All M rated games could soon be legal in the land down under.

After years of waiting, Australia will soon be able to introduce a rating higher than the current cap of MA15+.  Previously, the lack of a higher rating caused several titles rated M in the US, to be heavily censored or outright banned in that country.  The list of banned titles includes the soon to be released Syndicate, as well as previously released titles such as Mortal Kombat, Left 4 Dead 2, Silent Hill: Homecoming, and Fallout 3.

This new rating probably won’t be enacted until sometime next year, joystiq reports, citing the usual paperwork and government red tape.  It’s important to note that this is not a mandatory nationwide system.  The bill would simply allow each territory to choose for itself if it will accept the new rating.  In an article on the bill posted on, The CEO of the Interactive Games and Entertainment Association provided further explanation and pointed to the Australian film industry as an example.  There, the Northern Territory and Australian Capital Territory can provide access to X-rated films, while they remain banned in other territories.

While this is by no means a definitive and final blow to games being banned in Australia, it certainly provides hope for gamers who have been waiting to play these, and future titles with similar content.  It’s also an indicator that the Australian government is finally taking steps to resolve the issue instead of continuing to ignore it.




02/17/2012 at 12:12 AM

Yay! The Australian people get to join the rest of civilization...

With it being rolled out by territory, I guess contact your representive, let them know you want to play Manhunt in all its glory =)

Angelo Grant Staff Writer

02/17/2012 at 10:12 AM

With the possible exception of Syndicate, I doubt Aussies will really see any of the other banned titles.  People who really wanted to play them have either imported or pirated them by now, and publishers probably don't stand to make much money by finally releasing them.

Julian Titus Senior Editor

02/17/2012 at 10:30 AM

This is great news. It's bad enough that gamers in Australia have to pay much higher prices, but missing out on some of the better M rated games is really lame.

Angelo Grant Staff Writer

02/17/2012 at 10:36 AM

I used to help a friend out over there with both of those issues by mailing them games from the US.  Would you beleive it cost less to buy it here and ship it over there than for them to pay retail?  How crazy is that!

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