Valve responds to Left 4 Dead 2 ban


Shacknews has been able to get a few words out of Valve in response to the news that their highly anticipated Zombie shooter, Left 4 Dead 2, has been refused classification in Australia due to its "realistic, frenetic and unrelenting violence". VP of marketing at Valve, Doug Lombardi, had this to say about the whole situation. From Shacknews...

"We were surprised to hear of this news yesterday," the executive informed us. "Obviously, everyone at Valve is pretty bummed."

"It would be a shame if folks in Australia, or anywhere else, are unable to purchase Left 4 Dead 2 because of a ratings issue," Lombardi lamented.

Australia does not have a games classification above MA15+, so any title that doesn't fit for that highest category is unfortunately left with no suitable classification and therefore any chance for sale in Australia.

Reading the actual report, which can be viewed here from, it looks like Valve have really outdone themselves in the gore department with the Left 4 Dead sequel, with melee attacks resulting in '"copious amounts of blood spray, decapitations and dismemberment", and features such as locational damage.

If Valve had any marketing pezazz, they'd be sourcing a few quotes from this report from the Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC) for marketing purposes and box art.


Anonymous's picture

In the event Left 4 Dead 2 is banned in Australia I hope people start writing letters to EA en masse.

Obviously us lowly citizens have no affect on ratings policy, maybe if EA (who stands to lose money) starts pressuring the government to come up with an adult rating a difference can be made.

Corporate pressure FTW?

Anonymous's picture

No FTW - Australia Fail

Anonymous's picture

I'm pretty sure you're not allowed to use quotes/info about being banned as marketing material.

souri's picture

It looks like Valve is appealing the OFLC decision to refuse classification to L4D2.

They've provided an update of the ratings given to other regions for L4D2, but I think that sorta goes against their efforts since most of them have given the game a 18+ classification.

PEGI (continental Europe) - 18+
ESRB (North America) - M
CERO (Japan) -Z (corresponds to Mature in US)
IFCO (Ireland) - Approved the title for classification.
USK (Germany) - 18+
Singapore - Mature 18
FPB (South Africa) - 18+
KGRB (Korea) -18+

OLFC New Zealand - In progress.
BBFC (UK) - In progress.
OFLC Australia - Refused to rate on September 17. Appealed September 23.

Anyone know if you import a boxed copy, if Steam will allow you to play it? Refused classification doesn't necessarily mean banned (stores just can't sell it), so it should be ok to own a copy, right.

Anonymous's picture

I'm pretty sure importing RC material (things like child porn, snuff films, bomb making instructions, all that stuff that games are on par with) is illegal. But if you get it through customs, I guess it's really up to Valve whether they allow Australians to even play or not via Steam.