British regulatory group says no to new version of Manhunt 2

Posted by Mark Raby

London (England) - Rockstar was able to get a toned down version of Manhunt 2 through the ESRB, but it is having a more difficult time getting approval in the UK.

The British Board of Film Classification has rejected an appeal from Rockstar after it originally banned the game for being too violent.  Rockstar made changes and presented it to the Video Appeals Committee, but apparently it was still too violent.

BBFC director David Cooke released a statement saying, "We recognise that the distributor has made changes to the game, but we do not consider that these go far enough to address our concerns about the original version. The impact of the revisions on the bleakness and callousness of tone, or the essential nature of the gameplay, is clearly insufficient. There has been a reduction in the visual detail in some of the ‘execution kills’, but in others they retain their original visceral and casually sadistic nature."

The organization's US counterpart, the Entertainment Software Ratings Board, originally stamped the game with an "AO" rating, which is essentially the mark of a banned title.  After toning it down a bit, the ESRB was willing to grant it a more tolerable "M" rating.

The game's distributor can re-appeal after making more changes to Manhunt 2.  In the US the title is set to be released on the PS2, PSP, and Wii on October 29.