In Australia, the Classification Board announced today that the previous We Happy Few ban is now under review. Previously, the Board refused classification for the game, rendering it illegal to sell. Now, the door is open for that to possibly change.
The review is happening because an appeal was filed earlier this year. The classification originally happened because of We Happy Few‘s heavy presence of drug use. “Joy” is no only a big part of the game’s story, but it also serves as a “power-up” of sorts in the gameplay. While the story is actually a battle against the drug, the gameplay elements come off as an encouragement, as far as the Classification Board is concerned.
Via a press release, the Classification Board announced it well meet for this review on July 3. The floor will be open for public submissions, and the deadline for submissions is June 29. Only submissions related specifically related to We Happy Few will be considered.
We Happy Few is not alone in games featuring drug use that have been banned in Australia. The Fallout games for example, which include several types of fictional drugs as consumable items, have been banned for similar reasons. Essentially, anyone trying to fight this one will really have to focus on the Joy element, and find ways to argue against it portraying drugs in an encouraging light.
[Source: Kotaku Australia]
We Happy Few Ban Under Review by Australian Ratings Board