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Altered Version of Saints Row IV Receives MA15+ Rating in Australia

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I just received a very interesting press release in my email inbox, pertaining to Saints Row IV and Australia. If you’ve been following the saga, you’ll know that Saints Row IV was refused classification by the Australian Classification Board. The reasons given for the RC rating were due to the “interactive, visual depictions of implied sexual violence” and “elements of illicit or prescribed drug use related to incentives or rewards”. This effectively meant that the game was banned for sale in Australia, because of alien narcotics and an anal probe weapon.

Turns out the biggest stumbling block was the drugs thing, though. Deep Silver decided to submit a cut version of the game to the ACB, eliminating a side mission that focused on alien drugs. The following press release, which I’m blatantly copy/pasting below, states that the removal of the side mission has allowed the game to slip by with a mere MA15+ rating.

“Saints Row IV has been classified by the Australian Classification Board as MA15+. The version classified by the ACB is slightly modified and differs from the worldwide release only insofar as a single short optional mission has been removed in order to comply with Australian legislation. This mission has been the subject of much discussion recently for featuring the use of virtual alien narcotics by the player character, which could potentially improve certain superpowers temporarily within the game. The Rectifier Probe weapon, which has also been part of the discussion, is still due to be released as part of the Season Pass DLC package, as has always been intended both for Australia and the rest of the world.

Publisher Deep Silver has provided the following statement:

“Deep Silver and AIE are pleased to report that the Australian Classification Board has now approved Saints Row IV for sale. They have granted the game an MA15+ rating. To achieve this rating one loyalty mission featuring the character Shaundi has been removed. This mission has been widely reported on and contains the use of alien narcotics to obtain certain superpowers.

“This mission represents approximately 20 minutes of gameplay out of the hours available to purchasers.

“The removal of this mission has no negative impact on the story or the superpowers and will not detract from the enjoyment players will get from their Saints Row IV experience. The rectifier weapon will be available as part of a DLC package as originally intended. Deep Silver stands by this decision and thanks the Australian Classification Board for their assistance with this matter.”

The alien anal probe Rectifier weapon will still be coming to Australia as DLC, as previously planned.

A point to note – Grand Theft Auto 5 has recently been rated R18+ in Australia. Make of that what you will.

Former Editor in Chief of OnlySP. A guy who writes things about stuff, apparently. Recovering linguist, blue pencil surgeon, and professional bishie sparkler. In between finding the latest news, reviewing PC games, and generally being a grumpy bossyboots, he likes to watch way too much Judge Judy. He perhaps has too much spare time on his hands. Based in Sydney, Australia. Follow him on twitter @lawksland.

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Sci-Fi Adventure Tether Back in Development, Demo Released

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Tether

Freesphere Entertainment has announced that Tether is back in active development, almost a year after it was put on hold.

Alongside the announcement, the team has finally released the prototype version of the previous incarnation of the project for free on itch.io. According to the announcement, the decision to release the demo came because “it seemed silly to have years of hard work sat there for people who worked on it to not get any recognition.”

The post also suggests that Freesphere has gone back to the drawing board for the project, saying that it is seeking to reduce the scope of the story and hinting at a “new direction.”

The demo is a long time coming, as creative director Mark Gregory first told OnlySP late last year that it would be made available as part of a larger interview discussing some of the problems and struggles faced by the team members, which included underfunding, a lack of publisher interest, and personal burnout.

For anyone unfamiliar with Tether, the sci-fi adventure promises to tell the story of a mother trapped aboard a space station while on a mission to prevent environmental collapse. While the premise raises echoes of the ‘walking simulator’ format, the game was quite ambitious, featuring time manipulation mechanics, a reactive AI enemy similar to Alien: Isolation‘s xenomorph, and immersive sim elements. How much of that will be retained in the new version remains to be seen.

OnlySP’s Amy Davidson has already pledged to trial the demo as a future entry in the Friday Freebies Club, which this week will examine \SPEK.TAKL\, so watch out for that.

For all the latest on Tether and much more from the world of single-player gaming, be sure to bookmark OnlySP and follow us on FacebookTwitter, and YouTube. You can also join the discussion in our community Discord server.

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