Earlier today, Andy Chalk posted in our newsroom a story about The British Board of Film Classification's ban of the sale of Manhunt 2 in the U.K. This outright rejection of Rockstar's upcoming title is a bit out of the ordinary, but the BBFC has been joined by the Irish Film Censor's Office.
Further to that, the Center for a Commercial-Free Childhood has publicly called for an AO rating from the US-based ESRB. We heard from the President of the ESRB a little while ago, responding to the CCFC's public call:
"We have received the letter from CCFC and, while we might take issue with some of the statements made within, we sincerely appreciate their expressed concerns. Our ratings are intended to provide guidance that allows parents to choose games they deem suitable for their children, and that is a responsibility we take extremely seriously.
"It should be noted that ESRB has already assigned a rating for the Wii, PS2 and PSP versions of Manhunt 2, and that rating has in fact already been communicated to the publisher. However, we are unable to publicly release the rating at this time as it is our policy that ratings be posted to our website 30 days following assignment, unless the game is released prior to the end of that period. This is done to give publishers the opportunity to consider modifying and resubmitting their games for rating or appealing the rating assigned to our Appeals Board should they wish to do so. We have not yet been notified by Rockstar as to what they intend to do with respect to our rating assignment." - ESRB president Patricia Vance