The German ratings board, the USK, has refused to provide a rating for PQube’s Valkyrie Drive. This mirrors a recent move by the Australian ratings board, which also refused a rating.
What makes Germany and Australia so similar? They’ve both got quite a bad history with censorship, and it’s almost become like a broken record. When we say you’ve already read this article, we really mean it. The game is the same, the reasons for refusal are the same—it’s just a mirror image of last time.
Well, this time it’s Germany’s turn to crack down. According to Western publisher PQube, the USK stated that Valkyrie Drive was deemed unfit for sale due to “content severely harmful to minors.” They continued to suggest that the game depicted “minors in unnatural and sexually explicit poses.”
If you recall, that’s the same reason they gave for Criminal Girls 2. It’s the same reason the Australian Department of Communications and Arts gave too. Well, everyone knows that sexuality is hideously “unnatural” anyway, so maybe they’re on to something.
Fans in either Germany or Australia can still buy the game, of course. Valkyrie Drive was approved for sale in the US and greater Europe, with an M and PEGI 16 respectively. You’ll be able to find the game online, via either of these regions, which will work regardless of your own location.
Importantly, Valkyrie Drive will not be censored for these areas. Back in July, publisher PQube made a statement regarding this choice, an excerpt of which you can find below. It really does put into question the need for censorship at all. Germany and Australia will still throw a fit over things, and who knows, you might even slip something past them.
We generally don’t take on these kinds of projects if we’re not confident we can release it in the west without cutting or changing content. Changing the source material kind of defeats the purpose of doing it in the first place, so that is not something we even consider unless we literally have no other options. In terms of platform holders and ratings boards, you’d be surprised what you can get away with. Gal*Gun: Double Peace passed quite painlessly for example.
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