In the wake of F.E.A.R. 2’s unbanning, we pinged Warner Bros marketing guy Mark Aubrey to get his thoughts on the classification u-turn. You can read the full Q&A after the jump.
To me, it sounds like they simply spent more time going through the game when demonstrating it to the Review Board. It’s also worth noting that the Classification Board and the Review Board are not the same thing; the latter only ever hears appeals of the former’s decisions. They’re comprised of different people, too, which might also help explain why a different decision was reached.Q. What did you think when the board handed down its original decision?
A. We were surprised by the initial RC classification which is why we immediately decided to appeal the decision with the Australian Classification Review Board.
Q. Why did you decide to appeal the decision? Besides not being able to release the game and make money, was it clear the board had overlooked or wrongly considered something?
A. We decided to appeal the original decision because we firmly believed that the game sat within the parameters of a MA15+ game in the Australian market. F.E.A.R. is also a well established franchise here with a strong fan base. We wanted to do everything we could to ensure Australian gamers were able to experience the standard, international version of the game.
Q. Since the game apparently hasn’t been edited in any way (can you confirm that?), what was different about the process the second time around?
A. I can confirm that the game has not been edited. The Australian Classification Review Board hearing allowed us to provide a written/verbal submission. We also did gameplay demonstrations and provided much more comprehensive footage of the game. This allowed us to go into the context and storyline in a lot more detail. I commend the Classification Review Board for the manner in which the review took place. They asked a lot of relevant questions and gave us every opportunity to present the game in as much detail as possible which was greatly appreciated.