Some of the No Game, No Life light novels has just been refused classification in Australia, following a push by a South Australian political party to have them removed from sale.
No Game, No Life was one of the series targeted by the Centre Alliance political party earlier this year. A representative of SA Best — a party also founded by Nick Xenophon that runs candidates for state office in South Australia — appealed to the vice president and president of Australian manga distributors Kinokuniya, asking for several titles to be pulled from sale.
The appeal was successful, with Kinokuniya pulling seven manga series from sale including No Game, No Life. Following the complaints from Centre Alliance and SA Best, retailers had to wait until each individual volume of the series were classified in Australia — a cost Kinokuniya argued should have been borne by the original publishers.
However, following that classification process, it seems like some titles will never be available for physical purchase again. The Classification Board recently banned three No Game, No Life volumes from release in Australia, saying the titles “describe or depict in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult, a person who is, or appears to be, a child under 18”.
At the time of writing, No Game No Life is the only publication to be reclassified in Australia. Given that Centre Alliance are listed as the applicant, it’s the political party who is bearing the cost of having the series reviewed. In practical terms, that means Kinokuniya and the original publishers of the series aren’t seeking to have the removed manga titles, which includes Eromanga Sensei and Sword Art Online, re-released in Australia.
The legislation requires that each individual volume of a series be submitted for review once it’s been determined that a piece of literature or publication should go through the classification process.
“When these titles were brought to the attention of the Classification Board, by some politicians, it fell to The Board to decide if the titles needed to be officially submitted for classification, before we are allowed to sell them,” Kinokuniya told Kotaku Australia in a statement.
As noted by Crunchyroll, No Game, No Life was also removed from Amazon’s Prime Video streaming service earlier this year. Eromanga Sensei was pulled at the same time, and under these conditions, it seems unlikely that either will return.
Thanks to Bartley for the tip!
Correction 2:10pm AEST: The original headline classified No Game, No Life as a manga series, but it’s three volumes from the original light novels that have been banned in Australia, not the manga adaptation. I’ve updated the headline and the body copy to reflect the difference (thanks David!)
It’s also worth noting that some Australian retailers, however, still have the banned volumes available for sale.