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Manhunt 2 hunted, banned, AO'd

Manhunt 2So, Manhunt 2, the "murder simulator" that uses the violent and disturbing (riiight...) possibilities of Nintendo's Wiimote, is being attacked and stabbed repeatedly in the eye with shards of glass.

That's all metaphorical of course, as in truth, the game has recently been given an AO (Adults Only) rating from the ESRB after pressure from the "Center for a Commerical Free Childhood" (CCFC) caused ESRB to cave into their demands. This decision has sparked a huge cascade of problems for Rockstar's sequel, set to be released on Nintendo Wii and Sony Playstation 2 on July 9th.

First, Blockbuster and GameFly (the online game rental service) have announced that they will not carry any games with an AO rating, and they will not be making any exceptions for Manhunt. In addition to the fact that retailers like Wal-Mart and Target do not sell AO games, this poses a huge problem for the game. In addition, The United Kingdom and Ireland have officially stated that the game will be banned from sale in both countries. All of this comes due to, you guessed it, the "unique physical interaction with the Wii control" being able to " take this simulation a level closer to reality."

Finally, to top off the massive damage dealt to Take Two and Rockstar, Nintendo and Sony have announced that they will not publish games with an AO rating on their consoles. Yes kids, that means that Manhunt 2 cannot get a release at all while it is rated Adults Only. Rockstar will most likely decide to edit the game until it reaches Mature status, but its reputation has been severely hurt.

What does this mean? Well, as GamePolitics puts it, "Black Tuesday" has to be one of the worst days for Take Two in recent memory, and it is even expected to cost them millions of dollars and the possibility of the continuation of Manhunt after this game. This is a sad day for video games, when a single advocacy group is able to completely destroy the credibility and marketability of both a single game and an entire developer.
[via GamePolitics]
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