Our pals at the Australian Classification Board love to leak things — and the board is on a real roll this month. Following the Castlevania GBA news, the ACB has inadvertently revealed a new project from the team at id Software.
It’s codenamed ‘2021B’ and rated M for violence and online interactivity, but beyond this we don’t really know what it is.
It also follows another mystery project — ‘2021A’ — which was similarly revealed by the ACB earlier in the year. That one is rated R18+ for high impact violence, online interactivity and virtual reality, leading many to believe it’s tied to the DOOM franchise (Doom Eternal VR, for instance). Still, there’s little clues about how 2021B ties in.
Many of the projects under the Id Software umbrella (Doom, Wolfenstein, Quake) rely on heavy violence, so they often get rated either MA15+ or R18 in Australia.
The only viable franchise they have that comfortably occupies a ‘friendlier’ tier is Commander Keen, and we’ve heard little from the franchise beyond the cancelled mobile game announced in 2019.
We can gather a few things from the new listing.
First, it’s low enough on the ‘M’ scale to be technically rated PG for themes and language. Drug use, nudity and sex are marked in the ‘none’ category, so we won’t see any of that in the game.
That pretty much immediately rules out Wolfenstein and Doom. It also likely rules out Quake, which is the next most likely candidate — but it could be that age, or a shift in direction, has mellowed out the rating for the games.
We also know the listing is a multi-platform ‘computer game’ developed by Id Software and published by Zenimax Europe. Nothing out of the ordinary there, but it does mean the listing doesn’t refer to that cancelled Commander Keen mobile title given it’s listed as multi-platform.
In the end, this rating decision reveals little about the upcoming project — but that hasn’t stopped the wild speculation, or the assumption this refers to a new title in the Quake franchise.
Whether it’s a remaster, remake or something new entirely, 2021B is a project you should keep an eye on. But it’s also one you should temper your expectations for. Id clearly has something intriguing in the works, but we’ll just have to wait and see what it turns out to be.