According to distributor All Interactive Entertainment, an edited version of Saint’s Row IV has been passed by the Classification Board.
Publisher Deep Silver issued the following statement regarding the edits:
Deep Silver and AIE are pleased to report that the Australian Classification Board has now approved Saints Row IV for sale. They have granted the game an MA15+ rating. To achieve this rating one loyalty mission featuring the character Shaundi has been removed. This mission has been widely reported on, and contains the use of alien narcotics to obtain certain superpowers.
This mission represents approximately 20 minutes of gameplay out of the hours available to purchasers.
The removal of this mission has no negative impact on the story or the superpowers and will not detract from the enjoyment players will get from their Saints Row IV experience. The rectifier weapon will be available as part of a DLC package as originally intended. Deep Silver stands by this decision and thanks the Australian Classification Board for their assistance with this matter.
While it is understandable that an absence of the two contentious missions wouldn’t actively cause a negative impact on one’s enjoyment of the game, the notion that removing missions won’t detract from players’ enjoyment is rather absurd. By that same logic, those missions must also add no enjoyment to those players which do experience them.
Regardless, the controversy is done and dusted, the game is rated and ready for shelves, and for the moment it looks like it will still hit its Australian release date. It’s currently holding at 22nd August, but with a rating coming through so late it’ll be a photo finish.
Of course, the heartache being caused by this is nothing next to what could’ve happened if the rating had taken longer and forced Saint’s Row IV into the September window.
And all was well in the jungle…