God Of War: Ascension Rated R18+, All Mention Of The Game Being Removed From QLD Stores

One day R18+ games will be classified in Australia and won't be newsworthy, but today is not that day. We've just gotten word that God of War: Ascension has been classified R18+ and, given Queensland's issues with passing the correct legislation, retailers have been advised that they cannot sell the game in that state.

"As Queensland has not passed legislation for the R18 rating for games we must remove all reference to God of War Ascension immediately," stated an internal message sent at one major retailer. "This includes all game slicks, posters, pamphlets, hand written signage, 2-way units and pre order signage."

When QLD missed the deadline to pass its own R18+ legislation, I wondered specifically what affect that would have at retail. This is an interesting look at precisely what has to occur.

Queensland Parliament is set to discuss R18+ in the middle of February when Parliament reconvenes.

Hopefully this issue will be sorted sooner rather than later.


    Who would have thought Queensland would be the most backwards state in Australia.

      As a South Australian, receiving state of the "Most Backwards State in Australia" award from 19?? - Whenever Atkinson resigned, this is great news.

        Even when you had Atkinson, Queensland made a pretty good case for most backward state. Since the last state election, we've pretty much solidified that position.

      Us locals? We have had some baaaaaad leaders.

      How about you save the moronic vitriol for if they decide to vote against it rather than that it hasn't had a chance to be decided yet. Even if they were currently active there's no reason to expect something of such a low priority in the scheme of things to be at the top of the agenda.

        Sorry but this is BULLSHIT. They are the only parliament that has a single house and could ram this through in 5 seconds if they wanted to. The fact is they knew since MARCH this was coming and failed.

        Every other state which had to go through TWO HOUSES, managed to do it. Queensland has no excuse. None. It just harms their retail economy because you think Australia post is going to run a customs scheme on this? Nope.

          Yes, because what you really want in a government is the ability to drop whatever else they're doing and 'ram' the unimportant things through.

            its not important to 1) keep your retail economy on par with the rest of the nation 2) Ensure your state is in line with Federal positioning and laws? Well i'll be.

            Yes Queensland had a busy year sacking 30,000 people last year, but they couldn't find one day (on average the debates in the other states lasted 2 days total) to talk about it and vote? I find it hard to believe.

            Like i said, there is no excuse for this. My point was its even EASIER for Queensland to pass this due to only having one sitting house. Perhaps i didn't communicate in the right way. Given the amount of stupid shit parliament usually wastes time on in between good policy discussion and votes, they had the time. Guarantee it.

              I agree with you Choc. Whomp made a stupid comment and now he is just being argumentative for the sake of being right.
              Qld doesn't have an endless backlog of other issues. They didn't need to drop everything to deal with this. They just have arrogant old fuddy duddies who didn't want it through for false reasons.

            Exactly, I'd much rather send my money overseas or simply pirate the product.

            Prohibition empowers black markets.

        That is as may be, but how many other states had the Bjelke-Petersen cartel running them into the ground for two decades? Other states ain't got shit on QLD's history of corruption and flagrant stupidity.

      As a Queenslander, Don't blame me, I didn't vote LNP (one of the few apparently :-\)

        If you look at the election results, there was a fair amount of support for Labor and Katter's Australia Party. The seat distribution is somewhat disproportional simply because there were a lot of tightly contested seats that Labor lost. So Labor still got votes, just not enough to win any seats.

      Queensland has always been the most backwards and conservative state in AUS. Just look at our marijuana laws and many more.

      Google Bob Katter...
      That should answer the question...

    is it still legal to own, then?

      IANAL, but it wasn't illegal to own unrated games before, just to sell them. I'm assuming it will be legal to own, but in theory you could have it seized when you try to bring it across the border.

        The mental picture of customs points on the boarder searching cars for God of War made me smile.

        IANAL has to be the stupidest acronym I've ever read. It sounds like some porn companies attempt at copying everyone else and chucking an i in front of everything Apple style. iAnal.

      it is. wont be illegal to buy from another state.

    Dammit Queensland! What happened to us being "The Smart State"? :P

      I think it's fair to say the only people that say Queensland is the smart state are Queenslanders.

      Last edited 08/02/13 11:53 am

        I'm a Queenslander and I preferred sunshine state.
        We actually have the choice so 90% of cars say Sunshine not Smart, it was a dumb move by the politicians changing something that didn't need to be changed and wasn't wanted.

        So not even Queenslanders say Smart State only moronic politicians.

      Thought we were the Sunshine State? Hey and Brisbane is supposed to be A New World City. All the other Cities have 18+...

        Well Qld now calls itself that mostly because I think they realised the rest of Australia was laughing at them at the time when they called themselves the smart state and were proud of it.

        When actually it comes from a time when on average Queensland had the lowest educational standard and when Qld had a state premier who claimed that education was not important because he never got one and look where he was. He also allowed for a brief period of time due to the high illiteracy amongst its residents, he made it so they could legally sign documents etc with an 'X'

        So yeah Smart State, not so much. I also believe that mathematics is a mandatory subject all the way through high school in Queensland because of the states past with education, and also why I believe students are not permitted to leave school at the end of year 10 without a guaranteed apprenticeship lined up or a similar thing. Unlike here in NSW where you could decide to just drop out if you hated school.

          Thats new, plenty of my mates dropped out at year 10.

            Well when I was in year 10, 7 years back it was like that for QLD as my mate who went to school at Logan or somewhere round there was telling me.

      The Smart state went when the LNP got in to power - They actually got rid of that reference, no licnece plates or mention of it now on stationary, the reason to save a few pennies., not realising that they had to pulp and destroy all current Smart State material - that costs money and is wastefull, They then had to spend money to replace all the stationary, posters banners etc. Smart State indeed. Don't expect any of our gaming needs to be satisfied without a trip or online order from the southern states. The ymay even look into other media again banning certain movies and other media.

        They have to replace all that stuff every election anyway.

      Dammit Kotaku! Don't apply logic to my attempt at a joke! :P

    I have a feeling that the floods are probably going to push the decision out even further.

    Wow. As a South Australian, it's been a long, long time since I've been able to look down my nose at any other state on censorship issues.

    Man, this is gonna be sweet :P

      There has always been and will always be Tasmania.

        Tasmania were actually one of the first states to pass a R18+ legislation IIRC.

          You don't recall correctly then :)

          According to past Kotaku articles ACT was the first, then NSW, then SA, then for some reason the Kotaku articles on this matter dried up - and the rest of the internet was also asleep on this issue - but I googled for my own pleasure


          ROFL "canberra-is-the-first-state"


          less relevant is this one:


          (Royal Assent - 26 November 2012)

          (Royal Assent - 29 November 2012)

          (Royal Assent - 4 December 2012)

          (Passed - 4 December 2012)

          Tassie was the 4th state/territory to pass R 18+ :)

          Yeah and I failed because ACT is not a state (or NT either).

    I'm pretty sure people from Queensland are still allowed to get it, they just can't buy it at retail stores.

    So, it's illegal to sell in Queensland. Does that make it illegal to take to Queensland? (Bring it home from a holiday, when you move?) Is it illegal for someone in Queensland to buy from an online store operating out of NSW? Can I send a copy to a friend in Queensland?

      R18+ games in Queensland right now are in the exact same situation that X18+ is for most of Australia. It is illegal to sell them in the state but perfectly legal to own/buy from another state.

        Before the R18+ system was in place, the best way to get uncensored games was to buy from New Zealand, mainly because our sheep bretheren share the same region code for dvd (for those Xbox owners playing at home)

        Nothing stopped me from importing a whole host of games. In fact, I remember buying GTA + GTA2 in a collection some years ago, MA15+ sticker, but the CD's had English 18+ labels on the disc so that was pretty lax

    How annoying. I feel for our QLDers, its not gonna stop anybody though just makes it inconvenient

    I don't know which JB Member leaked that, but I hope nobody finds out who it was.

      I can't believe someone even considered posting this to Kotaku! These memos are for staff and staff only. Someone is gunna get in hugeeeee trouble if they get found out!

      Why? A customer walks in and asks to preorder, and they would have given them the same information seen in the email.

        Maybe the fact that they are posted to our intranet and aren't for customers to be reading? We can pass on information but thats not even the point.

        That's not the point. Someone took a photo of private information and then shared it with the internet. Yes, this would have been announced eventually, but this was not announced by Sony, was it? It was leaked by an employee that should not have taken it upon themselves to share it if they are concerned about losing their job. People have been fired for less, all i'm saying is it was a ballsy move they should have just been avoided. IF they were to be found out and lose their job because of it, it is entirely their own fault.

    Unless Steam is going to start blocking games based on your state (either what you've told them as a billing address, or maybe your IP address?), I don't think this will affect the sale of R18+ games in QLD toooo much...

      The God of War series is on Steam?? :p

      I get what you mean; for us PC gamers it shouldn't make much of a difference, but it will still affect the general console gamer crowd.

        Yeah, they may well release it on PSN. Of course you'll have to pay $99+ for it, but at least you'll be able to get it on launch day :P

        Ah yes - oops :) I'm a PC gamer, didn't even think of consoles. *smacks forehead* And I know nothing about God of War :)

      love to see them try geoblocking. i get told im in perth half the time (iinet). Newmanland is such a shambles (curling up into a ball and mumbling "Queenslandah!").

    Poor Queenslanders, there will be absolutely no way for you to obtain the game now :(

      You mean apart from ordering it from a store based in another state?

        I highly doubt that stores in other states would even consider posting the game to Queenslanders.. Customs can technically seize the package, you realise that? Same if you get found out with MK etc and having it sent from overseas.

      Lucky there is no way to smuggle games across state borders or all the people would be corrupted.

    With all the problems over recovery efforts from the floods and economic issues in QLD, there is now way that R18+ legislation is going to be any where near the top of the priority list for the government.
    Given that legislation in Queensland has not even been drafted as far as I can tell, I would not be holding my breath to see this even get a mention before mid year.

    I can see the game stores in Tweed Heads right now making a much bigger orders for stock of R18+ titles ;)

      the legislation is drafted and is before parliament, They wanted a commitee report and got one. It reported back to Newman yesterday. The report discussion and potential vote is set for next week according to the schedules released for QLD parliaments first sitting.

    The question I have though is.. does this game really warrant an R18+ classification?? It's not that bad.. is it?

      Have you played GOW3? I thought that was pushing the limit of the MA15+ rating to the very edge and then some. I'm not a squeamish kind of person (I won't think twice about ordering a big juicy steak after having a tour of an slaughter-house) but even some parts of that game made me a little uncomfortable with their violence.

        Yeah, I think GoW3 would of gotten an R18+ had the rating existed when it was released.

        No I haven't.. that's why I asked :) I've played GoW 1 and 2 though :)

    If I live in NSW and buy an R rated game then move to QLD, can I take my game with me?

      Unfortunately the game will dissolve as soon as you cross the border.

        You win the internet today.

    All you people spouting on about poor QLDers not being able to play R18+ games are surely kidding, right? eBay, friends in other states, no issues here.

    "... , I wondered specifically what affect that would have at retail."

    "effect" Mark :P

    Never played the series so personally doesn't affect me (no, that was not on purpose -_-), having said that, it means a lot of other titles down the road will. Bleh.

      I don't understand why people have so much trouble with affect vs effect. It's really very simple: If it's a noun, it's "effect". If it's a verb, it's "affect" - except for those times when it's "effect". Ok?

      To be fair, it's the first mistake I've ever seen from Mark so probably just baby caring fatigue or something.

    Preorded the Collectors Edition from EB, rang them regarding it and they will hold it until the release date where if the R18 isnt lifted in QLD by then it gets cancelled. Kinda dissapointed but hopefully they sort their stuff out before the actual release date.

    So now instead of QLD retailers getting our hard earned $$ it'll go to online retailers instead. For shame QLD, the state is not only letting itself down but the whole of Australia.

    The legislation.will likely be passed before the game Is Released anyway, but this just Shows how incompetent the qld govt is. The Game isnt illegal to.buy, Own or import as its been rated at A federal level. The constitution
    makes it firmly illegal to restrict interstate commerce. But as always i'll be importing from hong kong as always.

    QLD needs to stop dragging its feet though.

      actually you are wrong. it is the constitution and the seperation of powers that gives Queensland this power. The federal government controls classification, the states control the sale and display of the items.

      This is how they got R18 through Federal Parliament and the AG meetings. They threatened to remove the power from the states if the states did not comply. So the AG's finally came to the party.

        No I'm not wrong. The constitution states that trade Between States shall be between states shall be absolutely Free. This Is why it is legal to buy and own X18+ material in all states. It has been this way since federation. Look it up. The situation will be no different with R rated games.

          Its not legal to by x18+ in all states.
          X18+ stuff is illegal to sell outside of NT & ACT. Not illegal to own it though.
          R18+ games are (currently) illegal to sell / promote in QLD. Again, unless somethings changed recently, it shouldnt be illegal to own a game thats been passed as R18 by the ACB.

          FYSHWICK exists for a reason. Fireworks and X18 movies. Its not legal to buy X18 movies in NSW for example from a retail outlet. Same with Queensland and R18 games. NSW has a law that says no X18 in retail even though X18 is valid classification. QLD has this with R18 right now.

            So why can I walk into any number of adult stores in my town (Tweed Heads NSW) and purchase X18+ material if it's supposedly illegal to sell it to the general public in the states.

          Ah yes section 92 Free Trade Agreement between States. Queensland is known to break that one often by trying to exclude out of state people from certain things.

    Interesting...considering the EB Games head office is in queensland..... :P

    Qld is the new Australia.

      What does that make Australia then?


        Last edited 08/02/13 2:59 pm

      This individual is clearly a Queenslander. Props sister and/or brother.

    Midnight cross border runs anyone?

    Say I got a copy of this in NSW, decided I didn't like it and sold it on eBay from QLD, am I breaking the law, breaking the law

    Last edited 08/02/13 2:55 pm

    Very strange, at one point I believed that GOW:A had already been rated MA15+ and did have a listing on the Classification Database, but I can't see where I found it now...

    How does this affect EB shiping out online orders to other states? Their distribution centre is in QLD.

      My GF works at an EB in SE QLD, apparently all of the pre-orders are being moved to the tweed store. I'm assuming they will just sell it from there, on paper at least.

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