Australia is one of several countries in the world notorious for banning or refusing classification for certain games. Some games like Saints Row 4 and The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings were later given permission after the developer or publisher agreed to censor the game. However, games like Manhunt and Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number remains banned in the country until today. The most recent case involves Compulsion Games’ upcoming game, We Happy Few.
The Australian authorities slapped an RC rating on We Happy Few yesterday. RC stands for “Refused Classification,” which means that the game cannot be sold in the country. To clarify, the game has already been playable on Steam since 2016 but it is slated to leave Early Access later this year.
We Happy Few Refused Classification
According to the official Classification Board site, the reason for We Happy Few‘s refused classification is as follows: “The computer game is classified RC in accordance with the National Classification Code, Computer Games Table, 1. (a) as computer games that depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified.”
We Happy Few is set in a dystopian alternate version of 1960s England, in the fictional town of Wellington Wells. After a devastating war took place, the citizens begin taking hallucinogenic drugs dubbed “Joy.” Joy leaves them constantly in a state of happiness, albeit with loose morals. Players control characters who stop taking the drug and must find a way to out of the town.
At the time of writing, Compulsion Games and Gearbox Publishing have not given any official statement on the matter. We Happy Few was initially announced in 2015 and the final version of the game will release on the PS4, Xbox One and PC in 2018.