[UPDATE] A press release sent today by Outlast 2’s Australian publisher, 18point2, has now shed some light on the reasoning behind the game’s eventual R18+ rating following a resubmission to the Classification Board. The provided statement reads as follows:
The original submission of Outlast 2 sent to the Australian Classification Branch contained the final game code and a video file for reference taken from an Alpha version of the game. This video file should not have been sent along with the game code, as its content was not representative of the final game.
In the second submission, the same game code was submitted, with a video file reflecting the final game content. The game was then approved for release with an R18+ rating. There will be only one version of Outlast 2 available worldwide. These will be the final comments made on this release.
[ORIGINAL STORY FOLLOWS]
An entry for Outlast 2 listed on the Australian Government’s Classification Board website has confirmed that on March 21st 2017, Outlast was given the R18+ rating, with warnings of “high impact horror themes, violence, blood, gore, and sex.”
The ruling comes roughly a week after the game’s initial classification refusal, which stated that Outlast 2 was found to: “depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified.”
In a report obtained by Kotaku, it appeared as if scenes of “implied sexual violence” were a significant factor in the board’s original decision to refuse classification.
It’s unclear what caused the Classification Board to alter their original decision, but what we do know is that the contents of Outlast 2 were not altered in any way during resubmission, and that Australia will receive the same game as everyone else.
In a statement provided to Press-Start, developer Red Barrels confirmed: “Outlast 2 has been rated R18+ by the Classification Branch in Australia and will be released 26th April 2017. There will be only one version of Outlast 2 available worldwide.”
For a closer look at Outlast 2, check out Let’s Play of the demo.