The Week In Games

Perhaps the most controversial game of the year is released this week. Valve's Left 4 Dead sequel arrives, minus corpses, dismemberment and blood spatter.

Of course, the gameplay remains essentially the same in the censored Australian edition, while those PC gamers who understandably want the full experience will be able to find a way. I'm curious to hear how many Xbox 360 owners are going to pick up Left 4 Dead 2 this week. Are you?

Elsewhere, I'd be spending my money on Assassin's Creed 2 (and possibly its handheld spin-offs), Men of War, Divinity II and A Boy and His Blob, the last of which was delayed a week from its planned launch. All in all, a very good week for gaming!

What are you spending your moneypoints on this week?

New releases for the w/c November 16:

A Boy and His Blob (Wii) What Is It? Gorgeous platformer where you use your blob’s abilities to solve puzzles and find your way home to Earth. Should You Care? It has a hug button.

Assassin's Creed: Bloodlines (PSP) What Is It? Continues the tale of Altair to fill in the story between original and sequel. Should You Care? It meant to be a proper Assassin's Creed game, too.

Assassin's Creed II (360, PS3) What Is It? Open world action/adventure that marries parkour, sneakiness and violent combat. Should You Care? Ubisoft seems to have fixed many of the problems of the original.

Assassin's Creed II: Discovery (DS) What Is It? Side-scrolling spin-off that takes ACII star Ezio to 16th century Spain. Should You Care? I haven't played it, but it looks much better than the previous DS outing for the series.

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (PS3, Wii, DS, PC) What Is It? Movie tie-in platformer with a smattering of puzzles that is aimed squarely at the kids. Should You Care? Might be a decent Xmas gift for your 8-year-old nephew.

Divinity II (360, PC) What Is It? Belgian-developed RPG where you play a dragon slayer, and also get to fly them. Should You Care? Recommended for fans of Gothic and other Euro RPGs.

Dragon Age: Origins (PS3) What Is It? PS3 version of Bioware's classical RPG, released two weeks earlier on PC and Xbox 360. Should You Care? If you can't get it on PC then the PS3 version is just as good as the 360.

Dragon Ball: Raging Blast (360, PS3) What Is It? Another Dragon Ball fighting game, this time bringing a hefty suite of online tournament options. Should You Care? Apparently there are better Dragon Ball games out there already. I really wouldn't know.

EA Sports Active: More Workouts (Wii) What Is It? I'm guessing this is probably more workouts for EA Sports Active. Just a hunch. Should You Care? For when too many workouts are barely enough.

F1 2009 (PSP, Wii) What Is It? Reasonably serious F1 racing simulation from Codemasters, makers of DiRT and GRiD, but strangely not releasing on PC, 360 or PS3. Should You Care? There's definitely room for a proper racing sim on Wii.

Ghostbusters (360, Wii, DS, PC) What Is It? Hooray, non-PS3 gamers can now play this fairly average third-person shooter. Should You Care? Too little, too late, I think.

Invizimals (PSP) What Is It? Pokemon-esque animal collecting and duelling that uses the PSP camera to augment reality. Should You Care? The camera novelty should keep the kids entertained.

Jak & Daxter: The Lost Frontier (PS2, PSP) What Is It? Action adventure that mixes 3D platformer with some air combat. Should You Care? Where’s our PS3 Jak & Daxter game?

Killing Floor (PC) What Is It? Disc release of the previously download-only co-op zombie shooter. Should You Care? At $30 it's worth it. (Or $US20 on Steam!)

Left 4 Dead 2 (360, PC) What Is It? The fastest sequel in Valve history brings new characters, maps and modes to the definitive co-op zombie shooter. Should You Care? 360 owners will be stuck with the censored version.

LittleBigPlanet (PSP) What Is It? Play 30 new levels, create your own, and share them with the PSP community. Should You Care? The only thing missing from the PS3 version is multiplayer.

Medieval Games (Wii) What Is It? Minigame collection with a "ye olde worlde" vibe, including jousting and potion making. Should You Care? Sounds like some amusing Xmas Day nonsense for the family.

Men of War (PC) What Is It? Thrilling tactical combat game set during World War II that offers strategic play and direct control over your men. Should You Care? One of the year's best strategy titles.

Monster 4x4 Stunt Racer (Wii) What Is It? Amazingly, it's a monster truck racer with an emphasis on stunts! How cunning. Should You Care? The 4-player split-screen mode is a welcome addition.

Princess Melody (DS) What Is It? "Use your magical fairy powers of singing, dancing and drawing to help the Fairies defeat the Witch who has suppressed the art of music." Should You Care? Um... OK!

The Sims 3: World Adventures (PC) What Is It? Expansion pack lets you take your sims on holiday to Egypt, China and France. Should You Care? Only you know whether you need more Sims.

Style Boutique (DS) What Is It? Manage your own fashion boutique and help your customers find their own style. Should You Care? ARGH!

Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World (Wii) What Is It? Belated local release of a year-old Japanese RPG with a focus on monster hunting and training. Should You Care? Decent but not great, yet your RPG options on Wii are limited.


    So Ghostbusters is finally coming out huh? The week after MW2? Uh-huh.

    Probably pick up Assassin's Creed 2. I was disappointed by the first one but it looks like they've fixed a lot of the issues.

    i won't be buying the PC version of L4D2 until someone cracks it... while i'm sure it's still awesome fun in it's censored form, i still feel insulted that it's been dumbed down...

    To violence against zombies - Australia says NO!

    ... other than that there are quite a few games i'll be looking into including assassins creed 2 and ghostbusters

      Already done, mate.

      See here:

      I doubt valve will 'fix' this for the release version, seems they pretty intentional on their part leaving it so easy to change. Its essentially telling the game, "You're the international SKU, not the Aus/German one, got it?" And the game just takes your word for it.

        Be warned. I tried this the day after the demo came out. Played it a couple of times, saw the uncensored stuff. The next time I started up Steam disconnects me from the demo with an error message.

        Strangely enough, I thought it was no more gory than the original, other than some blood effects blocking your view. The limb shooting / intestines etc are barely noticeable because the action is too fast to be able to pay attention to it. I don't understand the decision at all.

    I don't care how bad ToS:DotNW is. Symphonia was an amazing game and I've been waiting a LONG time to pick this up. I just hope I don't have to wait as long for Vesperia on PS3.

    Maybe Boy and His Blob too. Super Mario last week, now two new games this week! What will I use to weigh down all those papers now the Wii is being used to play games again?

    cmon i want to hear assassans creed is released today

    Only just played the L4D2 demo this week and I have to say that the censored version rubbed me the wrong way. It was sort of like playing House of the Dead, with the corpses sort of fading away as soon as they hit the ground.
    With no fallen foes around your feet it feels like there is no marker of the adversity you've just overcome.

    Before there would be countless bodies of my flesh eating foes scattered across the battle field, now it just looks like a tornado blew through and tossed a bunch of garbage around.

    I won't be purchasing it, at least not until I know for sure there is some way to get around it and still play on Australian servers.

      Word. I couldn't even finish the L4D2 demo because of the censorship. It felt ridiculous. The zombie threat became something resembling a 3D Kung Fu Master. I swear, more often than not, the zombies started to disappear before they even hit the ground. It actually felt condescending and I don't remember when a game has ever made me fell that way.

      Same here, untill I can be guaranteed a uncensored version of the game with full online play capabilities (officially or unofficially) I am not going to be forking out any cash for l4d2.

    I want to get Dragon Age after all I've heard about it.

    I liked the first Assassins Creed for about 1 hour until it got really repetitive. Until I hear a few reviews I won't be picking it up for a while. I might save it for the summer holidays.

    Modern Warfare 2 is still getting a lot of my playtime. Even though the Multiplayer is still very frustrating for partying up!

    Anyone who picks up L4D2 censored X360 better be wanting a single player experience

    The yanks are constantly kicking aussies as it changes their game as well (taking out zombie types and weapons) and well to be honest, if i was a yank i'd be doing the same thing

    Also, having read a preview of Dead Rising 2 in Edge this morning, i fully expect it to be banned in Australia based on the L4D2 precedent. A game which basically revolves around chopping up and destroying zombies in the most inhumane ways aint coming out here people. :(

    Dave, F1 2010 is coming to 360 and ps3 is the next gen one. Early 2010 release which is why they chose not to put 2009 on those platforms

    definitely boy and his blob this week? turns out it was only on big w online, not in shops. and i just bought mario to get my 2d fix in desperation.

    I dont get it ghostbusters got released ages ago here. Ive seen it in stores and everything. Someone like to explain?

      sony published it here and stopped it from getting published on other platforms for an advantage.

      Last minute deal with Sony and Atari saw Ghostbusters getting a timed exclusive release for PAL regions on PS3. Now the Wii/360 owners get to give it a go.

    it was 6 month exclusive for Playstation platforms in Europe/Australia

      Sony had better have paid well, the buzz is long gone from that game.

    I just wanna know if you can skip cut-scenes in Assassins 2.
    Dave, you haven't played it yet obviously then??

      I haven't played the full game, but in the preview I checked out a few weeks ago you could skip the cut-scenes I played through.

    Can anyone clarify for me, is it illegal to import a game that has been refused classification australia? Also, How would an imported copy affect my online experience on the 360?


        Technically no. Its not an offence to own material that has been refused classification unless it contains something illegal to own (like child pornography)

        It is illegal for a store to sell the game.

          I think you might find that varies between states. Here in WA I have read that it is an offence to own RC material.

          It's not illegal to own refused classification content (in games instances anyway)

          however it is illegal to import and people customs do watch out for it. If they catch an RC game coming through they destroy it and send you a nice letter informing you that you are a bad person and should not be doing this

          next time you will be prosecuted.... and you really don't want to see the fine that you get for importing banned items.

            Choc's correct.

      Technically, yes, but do it anyway. As for playing an import copy on your 360, as long as it has no region protection, you'll be fine.

      Wow, I got a yes, a no, and a maybe. That didn't clarify anything.

        think of it this way

        its not illegal to own it, but its illegal to import it, so how do you own it in the first place if you haven't imported it? you bought it off a friend? oh well as that friend has SOLD a banned item they have seriously broken the law. A gift, well thats somewhat of a loophole but they have still imported it to give it to you.

        So you can own it but the means that you use to gain that is illegal, so in esscence you really can't own it without breaking the law somewhere.

    If you want to see the left4dead2 demo w/out ridiculous Oz censorship, you might be interested in this :)

    I noticed that some websites seem to have changed the release date for Tales of Symphonia from the 19th to the 26th. Do you know if the game is being delayed a week or not?

    Also, does anyone know if the box art will have the aus rating or the pegi rating with an aus sticker on the case.

      Just checked in with Namco Bandai and, yes, it's slipped a week to the 26th.

        Cheers David! Good to know Kotaku's got my back :)

    I think I might pick up a Wii this week with new SMB. The Big W deal looks pretty sweet, for $428, has anyone found any better deals?

    Dragon Age on Ps3 for me, I have had the bugger pre-ordered for months, stupid weeks later then 360 *grumble*

    360 owner here. Played the l4d2 demo and it made me very, very sad. I'll probably be buying the game, but only an import.

    Even uncensored, though, I'm not sure if it's a good game. A big part of what made l4d so great was the simple gameplay. The sequel is full of special infected that are too hard to discern from regular zombies, and far too many pickups.

    Australian publishers could do the following and it would not be against hte law

    1) do not submit a game to the OFLC for review if they think they are going to cop the ban stick

    2) Put up a website hosted at a .com on a US server which sells the game and ships to Australia

    3) or alternatively a digital download

    as the game has not been classified and is not available at retail, does not require classification the game would apss through customs just fine.

    Retailers would be up in arms, but well we get what we want :P

    yeah not going to happen...

    true story. PSN and XBLA exclusive games do not require classification as the OFLC does not have jurisdiction over internet games right now (iphone is a good example)

    Sony and MS do it just to remain friendly with the GVT

    L4D2 ban

    How can I make a complaint about a classification decision?

    You can make a complaint about a classification decision by writing to us by post, fax or email.

    Contact details:
    By Post: Locked Bag 3 Haymarket, New South Wales, 1240
    By Fax: (02) 9289 7101
    By Email: [email protected]

    please keep it civil.

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