The Australian Rating Board has decided that Outlast 2 won’t be given a rating, effectively banning the survival horror game from Australian stores. Their reasoning is as follows:
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.
I don’t know about you, but I’m wondering what they mean by “reasonable” adults. Seems like a rather unnecessarily broad term that one could be able to stretch to fit one’s own ends.
Another reason given was that the game contained an implied depiction of sexual violence, with the board being in possession of an “exhaustive” list of reasons why the game has been denied classification in Australia.
Kotaku Australia looked into the issue and managed to find out which scenes were the worst offenders in the eyes of the board. It’s a pretty graphic scene, so be warned if you’re a little faint of heart.
In one cut-scene in the game … a female creature prepares Blake for a ritual. She says, “I want to see your true face. Your seed will burn this world.” Shortly afterwards, he objects to having psycho-active dust blown into his face, yelling, “Nope! Nope!” before he stumbles into a forest clearing.
His vision blurring, he witnesses what appears to a ritualistic orgy. His wife, Lynn, calls out for his help, saying, “It hurts! Oh god!,” as she hangs from chains on a raised platform at the front of the clearing. Humanoid creatures, their skin grey, spattered with blood and scarred, implicity have sex as others pray, or chant, or gesticulate.
One creature has another bent over a rock, thrusting as they implicitly have rear-entry sex, another sits astride the pelvic region of a creature prone on the ground, moving their hips rhythmically as they too implicitly have sex. Two other pairs of creatures in the clearing are also implicitly having sex.
As Blake yells for the creatures to “Get away from her!” a female creature, her greyish breasts bared, pushes him onto his back, holds his arms to the ground and repeatedly thrusts her crotch against him. As Blake protests, saying “No! Stop that!” the creature thrusts again, before placing its face over his midsection and then sitting up and wiping its mouth.
Although much of the contact between the creature and Blake is obscurred, by it taking place below screen, the sexualised surroundings and aggressive behaviour of the creature suggest that it is an assault which is sexual in nature.
This led to the board deciding that the above scene is the reason why the game has been denied classification. They have told Kotaku Australia that they would be willing to take another look at the game if the scene above gets stripped out of the game.
Outlast 2 joins the likes of Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number, 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Postal 1 and 2, and Saint’s Row IV on the banned list.
Outlast 2 is scheduled to release for countries that are not Australia on April 25th for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
What do you think of Australia banning Outlast 2? Let us know in the comments!