Vivendi Universal's console action title 50 Cent: Bulletproof
has been denied an official age classification in Australia, making it illegal for the game to be sold, hired, advertised or exhibited in the country.
A statement from the Australian Classification Review Board states that a three member panel played the game for a cumulative forty-two hours and came to a unanimous decision that the game should be refused classification.
This announcement follows rapper 50 Cent’s recent suggestion
that parents should purchase the game for their children, despite its high age rating in America.
The panel indicated that, while the violence in the main game could be justified by context, this was not true of the arcade mode, with the Review Board’s convener Maureen Shelly stating that, "The counter kills are enacted in detail, they are prolonged and take place in close up and slow motion. The most impactful of the counter kills involve knives and on-screen blood splatter. The Review Board determined that the impact of this mode was high and could not be accommodated at MA15+ classification [Australia’s highest classification rating]. Therefore the game must be refused classification."
Apart from Germany, Australia has demonstrated the least amount of tolerance
for violent content in the Western world, partly due to the lack of a rating above MA15+, with titles such as Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
all being refused classification in the past.