Aside from the fact that not every game makes its way over to Australia, one of the other frustrating aspects of being an Australian gamer is that a number of games have in the past been Refused Classification or otherwise censored for trivial and not so trivial reasons (Fallout 3 for example was initially refused classification for a reference to morphine). There was hope that with the introduction of the R18+ classification that issues like this would become an infrequent occurrence but to date we have seen a number of games refused classification and even a formerly PG game reclassified R18+ in its Playstation Vita port.
The latest game to be Refused Classification was Saints Row IV. After initially being knocked back the team at Koch Media GmbH confirmed plans for an Australian edition which seems to have been followed by a request for reclassification. However not all bodes well for the game and a three-member panel of the Classification Review Board unanimously determined that the game is still classified as “Refused Classification” meaning it cannot be sold on store shelves, hired, demonstrated or advertised within Australia.
This is due to the same reasons as the aforementioned “Fallout 3” incident where drug use is related to incentives and rewards – which is not covered under the R18+ score. Of course this is assuming that the review was of the newly presented Australian Edition at PAX 2013 or was a re-review of the original material – which apparently included an anal probe weapon and narcotics side-mission.