Classification Board allows State of Decay through



blog Those Australians eager to thrust themselves head-first into yet another zombie apocalypse scenario will feel heartened by a tidbit of news emanating from Gizmodo yesterday. In late June, the Classification Board banned the sale of State of Decay, an open world zombie survival game which has garnered quite a degree of attention from gamers. Well, according to Gizmodo (we recommend you click here for the full article), quoting the Classification Board, drug references have been removed from the Australian version of the game, allowing it to be classified under the new R18+ rating:

“The Board notes that the original version of the game was Refused Classification as it contained drug use related to incentives and rewards. In the opinion of the Board, this modified game can be accommodated within the R18+ category because of the removal of references to proscribed drugs.”

To be honest, we view this situation as a little infantile. It looks as though all State of Decay’s developer had to do, to pass the Classification Board guidelines, was to remove references to real-world drugs in the game, and re-label them as fictional ones. But does this really fool anyone? Surely the point is still there, and this is only a cursory, surface-level change? This whole situation just feels quite juvenile. I mean, this is an R18+ game. Is anyone who finished year 10 at high school unaware that there are people out there who take drugs, and that some drugs have negative side-effects? It’s almost as though we’re already living in a nanny state; a particularly unintelligent one.

Image credit: Microsoft Studios


  1. Sounds a lot like what happened with Fallout 3.

    Honestly, I’ve long ago stopped expecting sense from the classification board. We should be aiming our efforts upstream of this problem – fixing the way the classification board’s rules get set and updated instead of fixating on specific instances of idiocy.

    IMHO, of course.

    • Yeah, basically. The Classification Board are just following the Classification guidelines, to the letter. I think it’s hard to blame them for that. What we need to focus on are the actual guidelines. How might we effect change in this respect?

  2. It’s bloody ridiculous, and exactly the sort of thing that gives people ammunition for “Nanny State” arguments. In fact, didn’t Conroy ask for R18+ to be introduced to make the implementation of the “Great Australian Firewall” easier?

    If people aren’t aware of the downside of drugs by the time they are 18, “drug use in adult games” is the least of our worries, the failure of our education system to actually give them information that can save their lives is a much bigger problem…

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