Germany Kiboshes Dead Island: Riptide

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Germany Kiboshes Dead Island: Riptide

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The developers of Dead Island: Riptide are none too happy that the game won't be released in Germany.

Nobody seemed too worked up about it when Dead Island was banned in Germany last year. A rep from developer Techland said the decision wasn't unexpected, and that both it and publisher Deep were "aware of such a possibility from the very beginning." But now the expansion Dead Island: Riptide has also been given the thumbs-down, and Creative Producer Sebastian Reichert sounds a little more irritated about it this time around.

"We have no censored version of the game, so we cannot release it in Germany. It feels fucking awkward to have one of the most successful games in years and nobody in your country knows it," he told PC Games N. Dead Island and Dead Island: Riptide are both published by Deep Silver, a division of Munich-based Koch Media.

The problem, it seems, are German laws that frown upon violence against "human-like" characters, which of course includes zombies. Making things worse, players can attack zombies when they're "dead," which apparently contravenes regulations against the mutilation of corpses.

Reichert also pointed out that while Dead Island is verboten, plenty of other violent games have been given the green light. "I'm really confused that you can buy Gears of War 3 in stores in Germany, but not Dead Island. Because where's the difference?" he said. "I mean, [Gears of War enemies] are human-like, and the things you do to them... They really have nice finishers! That flamethrower finisher, he rams the flamethrower into the body, pulls the trigger and the flames come out of every body part. That's in stores."

Reichert added that despite the restriction, he hopes German gamers are scoring copies of Dead Island anyway.

Source: PC Games N

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and here we go again...

but on the other side germany might be spared from another dissapointing and pretty generic experience.

As far as I remember, they never even bothered to present Dead Island itself to our ratings board. Playing the victim card now just feels ... wrong.

As a german i can tell you: Don't even try to make sense of which games are and are not banned in germany. As far as i can tell there's no understandable pattern to it. To me it seems like every once in a while the USK likes to tell the german public that no, they still don't respect artistic freedom. But then it's not that hard to aquire foreign games here.

I'm from Germany and just wanted to say: we are well aware that this game exists, it's just like everywhere else in the world: we know it isn't all too good.

I would find it good if more devs would complain about the system here and not just swallow it (and censor their games so they can be released (and be able to make their money back) here, i.e. Borderlands, All the CoDs up until BO2, GTA 3(also Vice City, San Andreas, Vice City Stories, Liberty City Stories), Team Fortress 2, Fallout 3,... )

How long are the Germans going to keep punishing themselves for what their grandparents did? It's not like they could give themselves a worse reputation than the one they already have. Bit late to pretend you give a shit about stoping your kids from turning into blood thirsty psychopaths don't you think?

The German censorship board really are crazy. I mean most of the imposed censorship was done shortly after WW2 but surely some of that stuff can ease up a bit now? Do they really think that stopping people playing Dead Island is going to protect them from having a sudden inexplicable urge to invade Poland?

We all know the whole thing is political. No one wants to be "that" person who tore down the censorship laws imposed after WW2. Lord knows Merkel doesn't need any more negative attention if she hopes to win the next election so it won't be done on her watch.

N3squ1ck:

I would find it good if more devs would complain about the system here and not just swallow it

...The polish didn't resist too much last time.

Why doesn't the government do a countrywide poll to ask Germans what they think of the censorship or banning of video games? have they done that already? I would be surprised if the majority didn't see these laws as overprotective and outdated.

Make a decent game and people will start caring. Dead Island was shoddy. Pretty, but shoddy.

Pebble:
Why doesn't the government do a countrywide poll to ask Germans what they think of the censorship or banning of video games? have they done that already? I would be surprised if the majority didn't see these laws as overprotective and outdated.

Because our current federal coalition is very likely to have one party drop out of the parliament entirely while the other has no other coalition partner after the elections next year - and the opposition is in control of the senate. The result is pretty much this: Anything major our government tries to pull ends with it either being vetoed by the senate, or being only done if the opportunists see it as a way to get more votes. Catering to a controversial topic like censorship could be fatal.

Pebble:
Why doesn't the government do a countrywide poll to ask Germans what they think of the censorship or banning of video games? have they done that already? I would be surprised if the majority didn't see these laws as overprotective and outdated.

Probably because the Germans who care and want a game can just order it from somewhere like France or the UK and have it a few days later

mad825:

N3squ1ck:

I would find it good if more devs would complain about the system here and not just swallow it

...The polish didn't resist too much last time.

Very qualified comment, I applaud you for being so thorough and insightful.

FEichinger:
As far as I remember, they never even bothered to present Dead Island itself to our ratings board. Playing the victim card now just feels ... wrong.

Yeah, that sort of thing has happened a few times with the Australian Classifications Board (formerly the OFLC)... and if I remember correctly one dev/publisher claiming they were refused classification when they didn't actually submit their game.

FEichinger:

Pebble:
Why doesn't the government do a countrywide poll to ask Germans what they think of the censorship or banning of video games? have they done that already? I would be surprised if the majority didn't see these laws as overprotective and outdated.

Because our current federal coalition is very likely to have one party drop out of the parliament entirely while the other has no other coalition partner after the elections next year - and the opposition is in control of the senate. The result is pretty much this: Anything major our government tries to pull ends with it either being vetoed by the senate, or being only done if the opportunists see it as a way to get more votes. Catering to a controversial topic like censorship could be fatal.

That sounds like a sad state of affairs, but at least I have some idea now. Like FelixG said, I guess you can still pick up controversial games more expensively from neighbouring countries or overseas, which is better than nothing.

Pebble:
That sounds like a sad state of affairs, but at least I have some idea now. Like FelixG said, I guess you can still pick up controversial games more expensively from neighbouring countries or overseas, which is better than nothing.

Oh, sure we can. But Dead Island kinda sorta proved it wasn't worth the hassle. ;)

Not much of a loss if it's similar to the original game as that was dull as hell and the PC-Port really had some issues (e.g. low FoV)...
I think, we can survive without it.

Regarding the GoW-argument: There is a difference between "Aliens" and "Zombies" - former, even as close as they are to humans in GoW from a physical point of view (two arms, two legs, ect...), they are NOT humans, period. Zombies, even not "actual" humans can be seen as such to some degree (or maybe even mistaken for one). THERE is the difference.

"The game isn't that good, so the archaic censorship laws are okay this time" is what I am getting from half of the replies.

So it's okay for people who want to play it to get screwed over by people with immature and backwards thinking, because it's not a product that you personally would enjoy?

It isn't about the game, it's about the fact that people are not allowed to buy it for nonsensical reasons. Killing fictional zombies is not going to cause you to suddenly have the urge to become a mass murderer. Games such as Gears of War are more likely to be damaging because although the enemies are non-human the violence is a lot more casual, and a lot more glorified.

Legion:
"The game isn't that good, so the archaic censorship laws are okay this time" is what I am getting from half of the replies.

So it's okay for people who want to play it to get screwed over by people with immature and backwards thinking, because it's not a product that you personally would enjoy?

It isn't about the game, it's about the fact that people are not allowed to buy it for nonsensical reasons. Killing fictional zombies is not going to cause you to suddenly have the urge to become a mass murderer. Games such as Gears of War are more likely to be damaging because although the enemies are non-human the violence is a lot more casual, and a lot more glorified.

Guess what: Nobody stops them from buying it! If they want to buy it, they can buy it - just not in stores directly.
Want to buy it on Amazon UK? Alright, do it.
Gift via Steam? Fine.
Went over to Austria and bought a retailcopy there? Okay.

People, who are interested in the game already know about it because of pages like this, gaming magazines, ect. And people, who are not might still stumble over those articles (if they would buy it or not probably wouldn't affect it) as it is a VERY VERY small amount of people, who SPONTANIOUSLY decide to buy a 50€ game they see in a store, that this loss is unnoticable.

Also, I don't see how "Gears of War" glorifies violence while Dead Island does not. Either they do it both, or neither. Just in different ways.

DVS BSTrD:
How long are the Germans going to keep punishing themselves for what their grandparents did? It's not like they could give themselves a worse reputation than the one they already have. Bit late to pretend you give a shit about stoping your kids from turning into blood thirsty psychopaths don't you think?

Well, as long as the current politicians are alive. No really, we have a party who is out against it (though from what I've gathered they do their best to fuck up their PR).
And do you really want to go there? Imply that all german kids are blood thirsty psychopaths? Or that even the current generation of parents has jack shit to do with it? No, don't go there. Not even as a joke.

On Topic: We are all aware of the existance of your game. Not only that but everyone who actually wanted to play it got it. Amazon.co.uk imports are by rule of thumb less expensive if you buy it in our stores and they deliver everything (well, except L4D2... but for that there are ways to get around as well).

Bindal:

Guess what: Nobody stops them from buying it! If they want to buy it, they can buy it - just not in stores directly.
Want to buy it on Amazon UK? Alright, do it.
Gift via Steam? Fine.
Went over to Austria and bought a retailcopy there? Okay.

Actually, if it is from amazon.uk it has several barriers: Credit card is one of them. It is still not as wide used method of payment - I am one of the 'lucky' fews who know persons who have such. Then there is amazon.co.uk. They don't deliver every game to us Germs - I had trouble ordering L4D2 until they just flat out told me that they can't deliver it. And not all people are lucky enough to live to a border - especially of Austria. It would take me over 5h with train to get to Munich - riding for just a train just for a game is not an option.

The only option is gift from Steam - find someone who'll do it. I more often than not have a problem to trade away games (I got from trades myself) because people assume that it is cut because I am from Germany.

Andy Chalk:

Reichert also pointed out that while Dead Island is verboten, plenty of other violent games have been given the green light. "I'm really confused that you can buy Gears of War 3 in stores in Germany, but not Dead Island. Because where's the difference?" he said. "I mean, [Gears of War enemies] are human-like, and the things you do to them... They really have nice finishers! That flamethrower finisher, he rams the flamethrower into the body, pulls the trigger and the flames come out of every body part. That's in stores."

I've always been tempted to use this argument, but it has a very bad consequence where they say "okay, fine, we'll ban EVERYTHING".

Legion:
"The game isn't that good, so the archaic censorship laws are okay this time" is what I am getting from half of the replies.

So it's okay for people who want to play it to get screwed over by people with immature and backwards thinking, because it's not a product that you personally would enjoy?

It isn't about the game, it's about the fact that people are not allowed to buy it for nonsensical reasons. Killing fictional zombies is not going to cause you to suddenly have the urge to become a mass murderer. Games such as Gears of War are more likely to be damaging because although the enemies are non-human the violence is a lot more casual, and a lot more glorified.

No. You know, Germans are actually used to this. We know that we have to deal with it, wait for the popular vote to shift, and get it from somewhere else. It's the bloody rest of the world that goes batshit crazy every time this happens. Funnily enough, it's more often than not the same rest of the world that instantly assumes our populace to be made up of nazis.

no, don't tell them there are more violent games they might ban those too...
oh wait, i don't give a fuck, since we are not Australia we have neighbours without such ridiculous laws and buying from there is really really easy. british amazon is even cheaper if you don't buy each game individually (which is why i am always cursed with stacks of games)

Pebble:
Why doesn't the government do a countrywide poll to ask Germans what they think of the censorship or banning of video games? have they done that already? I would be surprised if the majority didn't see these laws as overprotective and outdated.

the german population is (on average) really old and young people don't vote, this could seriously backfire, even if get all my "too cool to vote" friends to actually do something.

FEichinger:

Because our current federal coalition is very likely to have one party drop out of the parliament entirely while the other has no other coalition partner after the elections next year - and the opposition is in control of the senate. The result is pretty much this: Anything major our government tries to pull ends with it either being vetoed by the senate, or being only done if the opportunists see it as a way to get more votes. Catering to a controversial topic like censorship could be fatal.

you forgot to mention that Merkel loves to just sit and wait as her tried and true tactic for dealing with anything.
oh and i am calling schwarz-grün 2013

teebeeohh:

oh and i am calling schwarz-grün 2013

Oh god, this lets shivers run down my spine... But somehow this happens before every election. And the visit to the pub afterwards.

Pebble:
Why doesn't the government do a countrywide poll to ask Germans what they think of the censorship or banning of video games? have they done that already? I would be surprised if the majority didn't see these laws as overprotective and outdated.

Since the most active voters are old and are easily manipulated by media - and our media loves to target video games everytime something bad in our country happens we still have quite a big following amongst people who believe that violent video games are a serious problem. And those people aren't entirely old as well - we have also a lot of young folks who never touched a video game and tend to believe the crap Bild / RTL feeds them (Bild is a 'newspaper', RTL is shit in form of a television station).

Captcha: Bratwurst und Sauerkraut... WTF?

teebeeohh:
you forgot to mention that Merkel loves to just sit and wait as her tried and true tactic for dealing with anything.
oh and i am calling schwarz-grün 2013

That is indeed true ... But that's just a symptom of the 2013 election coming up. Merkel just doesn't have the metaphorical balls to do anything, for fear of the polls.

Also: Nope. Steinbrück as SPD candidate pretty much nailed it down on CDU/CSU + SPD, most likely with Merkel as chancellor again.
Green + CDU/CSU would mean that Green + SPD doesn't suffice and CDU/CSU + SPD doesn't work out. Neither of which will happen.

Gabriel as SPD candidate would probably have led to him going "Look, Merkel, you have noone to work with, and we could do with everyone. I don't care if you got most votes, we got the only working coalition."

I mean, it's becoming quite the accepted fact, that we're not seeing the FDP back in parliament next year. Which means we'll have

- CDU/CSU
- SPD
- Green
- Pirates
- Left

... And most likely in that order. Gonna be another four years of stagnation.

TheKasp:

Bindal:

Guess what: Nobody stops them from buying it! If they want to buy it, they can buy it - just not in stores directly.
Want to buy it on Amazon UK? Alright, do it.
Gift via Steam? Fine.
Went over to Austria and bought a retailcopy there? Okay.

Actually, if it is from amazon.uk it has several barriers: Credit card is one of them. It is still not as wide used method of payment - I am one of the 'lucky' fews who know persons who have such. Then there is amazon.co.uk. They don't deliver every game to us Germs - I had trouble ordering L4D2 until they just flat out told me that they can't deliver it. And not all people are lucky enough to live to a border - especially of Austria. It would take me over 5h with train to get to Munich - riding for just a train just for a game is not an option.

The only option is gift from Steam - find someone who'll do it. I more often than not have a problem to trade away games (I got from trades myself) because people assume that it is cut because I am from Germany.

You are aware that I just gave ONE example with Amazon UK and that there are tons of other stores? And eBay? And TONS of other options?

TheKasp:
Then there is amazon.co.uk. They don't deliver every game to us Germs - I had trouble ordering L4D2 until they just flat out told me that they can't deliver it.

Try searching for other online retailers, I guarantee you, you will be able to find British, French or whatever stores that will not give a flying fuck about posting to Germany. Or if you can't do it through Amazon, look at the alternate retailers on Amazon, then try searching their homepages and order directly through them, they are far less likely to give a shit about import restrictions, a lot of them are based in the Channel Islands to avoid certain taxes so I'd guess they're not too worried about stuff like that.

FEichinger:

teebeeohh:
you forgot to mention that Merkel loves to just sit and wait as her tried and true tactic for dealing with anything.
oh and i am calling schwarz-grün 2013

That is indeed true ... But that's just a symptom of the 2013 election coming up. Merkel just doesn't have the metaphorical balls to do anything, for fear of the polls.

Also: Nope. Steinbrück as SPD candidate pretty much nailed it down on CDU/CSU + SPD, most likely with Merkel as chancellor again.
Green + CDU/CSU would mean that Green + SPD doesn't suffice and CDU/CSU + SPD doesn't work out. Neither of which will happen.

Gabriel as SPD candidate would probably have led to him going "Look, Merkel, you have noone to work with, and we could do with everyone. I don't care if you got most votes, we got the only working coalition."

I mean, it's becoming quite the accepted fact, that we're not seeing the FDP back in parliament next year. Which means we'll have

- CDU/CSU
- SPD
- Green
- Pirates
- Left

... And most likely in that order. Gonna be another four years of stagnation.

i actually think union/spd will only happen if there is no majority for schwarz/grün since Merkel dislikes having to deal with the SPD in a Koalition since the majority those two have everywhere means it's really hard to justify why she is not getting shit done. and the green party pretty much said they wanted this when they decided to have an opportunist and a conservative theologist active in chruch politics to be their top people for 2013.

and i see the left before the pirates(because the pirates really don't to be taken seriously, which is OK if you run in Berlin but will hurt them in a federal election) and i won't count the FPS out, cockroaches and all that.

Just make a quick mod that puts deer heads on all the zombies. Than they won't be 'too human like' and it'll be fine.

Andy Chalk:
....
Reichert also pointed out that while Dead Island is verboten,...

As of the 31st of JANUARY 2012 "Dead Island" is NOT "verboten" anymore.

ace_of_something:
Just make a quick mod that puts deer heads on all the zombies. Than they won't be 'too human like' and it'll be fine.

Would make the game actual fun and funny too.

One more reason that people need to rise up against governments that feel it is their duty to protect people from themselves. It won't be long before games that require always on internet connections are released and they will be forced to actively block German/Austrailian/British/etc IP addresses for games that are banned and your ability to get it elsewhere won't matter. Nip this shit in the bud and stop the nanny state.

mad825:

N3squ1ck:

I would find it good if more devs would complain about the system here and not just swallow it

...The polish didn't resist too much last time.

Than learn history you jackass. If it was only Germans Poland would do fine.

On the bright side...Dead Island was fucking terrible. There was no real effort on the story or character front, and the gameplay was fucking bollocks. "Oh, you're high enough level to start finding swords instead of broken oars? Let's just make the zombies harder to kill...because level scaling rocks in zombie games..."

When it comes to video games, you can always count on the German & Australian governments to treat their citizens like little babies who can't be trusted to pick out their own clothes & dress themselves.

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