Disco Elysium: The Final Cut has been refused classification in Australia ahead of its planned release at the end of March—blocking the sale of the game’s incoming console editions, and raising questions about the future of the Steam release.
The Australian Government’s Classification Board this week gave Disco Elysium: The Final Cut a rating (or lack thereof) of RC, or Refused Classification. The filing cites depictions of drug use, addiction, crime, cruelty, violence and otherwise for the board’s reasoning.
To give it credit, Disco Elysium’s story does greatly concern drug use and addiction. The player character’s alcoholism is an immediately important part of the game’s story. But then, these aren’t elements exclusive to The Final Cut, and Disco Elysium has been available on Steam since October 2019.
Since The Final Cut arrives on PC as an update rather than a full standalone release, it’s hard to tell whether the decision will affect its availability through Steam. PC Gamer has reached out to Studio ZA/UM for comment.
The rating affects The Final Cut rather than Disco Elysium itself because, as an exclusive Steam release, the original version didn’t need to go through the classification board. As it’s also available on consoles, The Final Cut does. That said, Steam doesn’t grant immunity from the the board’s decisions. Hotline Miami 2 is still unavailable in the country, for example. And while the decision was eventually overturned, The Medium was initially refused classification—though that turned out to be over issues with the game’s submission process, which may yet be the case for The Final Cut.
It’d be a shame to see Disco Elysium: The Final Cut denied entry into Aus when it launches on March 30th. Arriving as an update for PC owners, the new edition adds full voice acting and, as Fraser found out, isn’t afraid to make its politically-charged story even more ideological.
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