Opinion: Syndicate’s RC rating is a good thing


So by now many of you have undoubtedly heard the potentially depressing word on the street that Syndicate won’t be hitting Australian shores. This is due to the fact that even though there’s an R18+ rating in the pipeline, the finer points are still being determined and it’s currently unavailable for classification use. But even though we’re not getting Syndicate, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Something you won't be seeing in February...

First things first, here’s the official response from EA:

It’s regrettable that government policy in Australia is denying adults the right to play Syndicate.  The game will be not be available in Australia despite its enthusiastic response from fans. We were encouraged by the government’s recent agreement to adopt an 18+ age rating for games. However, delays continue to force an arcane censorship on games – cuts that would never be imposed on books or movies. We urge policy makers to take swift action to implement an updated policy that reflects today’s market and gives its millions of adult consumers the right to make their own content choices.

Full respect to EA for backing Starbreeze’s play and sticking to their body-dismembering guns. Yes, it sucks that we won’t be getting an official release of Syndicate in Australia come February, but EA’s decision to not appeal the Classification Board’s RC decision shows one very important thing: integrity. We game in an age where yearly release models are rampant, so-called downloadable content is included on game discs and charged for later and publishers are afraid to demand and sell innovative titles because they want to play it safe.

Frankly, I find EA’s move bloody refreshing in light of the decline of integrity in our beloved entertainment medium. Sure, we miss out, but the reality is that Syndicate’s graphic representation of stylised violence is appropriate in the context of the sci-fi world Starbreeze is forging and it is Australia’s current system of classification that is broken. It truly sucks that we may miss out on more titles to the dreaded RC verdict while the R18+ rating is ushered in for games, but I would encourage all other publishers to follow EA’s lead and refuse to bend to this disproved yet still somehow operating classification system.

We may have won the war for an adult rating for games in Australia, but it seems that we’re still having to suffer the loss of some battles. Hopefully, Syndicate is the last instance of the shitty legacy of the draconian approach to classification in Australia.

The following two tabs change content below.
  • Snake

    Totally agree there Nachos. Looks like an import for many gamers. But good on EA for standing up to the Aus Government.

    The only other thing is how did “one the war” get by a word nazi like you :P

  • Anonymous

    Prove it! :P

  • Snake

    Now you have to wonder did I take a screenshot of said mistake for use at a later date or not :P

  • Anonymous

    Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

  • Snake

    Lol I was just going to say that it was leverage against killing me with a FPS nacho-ism the next time you find yourself on the PS3 ( and don’t teach them to Dave either I hate how he “McConaugheys” me all the time now lol)