Top 10 Banned Video Games

5 min read

Video games have a long history of getting banned for uncensored or violent content. What is instructive is to examine the games that got banned and try to figure out what pisses people off. In many cases, it’s pretty obvious – intense violence, graphic sex, or unsavory themes. And you’ll certainly see your share of those things in the games that follow. But there are other reasons that games get prohibited from sale, and they’re pretty weird. Here are 10 such video games that were banned in many countries.

10 –Pokemon Trading Card

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Unfortunately, even the cute and cuddly world of Pokemon is not safe from the gaming ban hammer. In 2001, all products of the Pokemon franchise were banned in Saudi Arabia for promoting gambling, Zionism and other religious intolerance. It is claimed the game(s) feature crosses, triangles and “the Star of David” throughout and because they are card-based games, they have been cited for gambling.

9 – RapeLay

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Many of the games on this list were banned simply because of cultural misunderstandings. You… can’t say that for RapeLay. The insanely controversial game developed by Japanese studio Illusion was released in 2006 and almost immediately kicked off a firestorm of bad emotions. If you haven’t heard of it, RapeLay puts you in the shoes of a sexual predator. And tasks you to do every possible thing a raper could do.

8 – Manhunt 2

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There are many rockstar games that are going to show up on this list later. The studio has courted controversy with the Grand Theft Auto games to great success, but when they dipped a toe into the brutal world of snuff porn with the Manhunt games, they got a little more than they asked for. The first game in the series saw government pushback in New Zealand and other nations, but the second – which amped up the brutality to previously unseen levels and really got hammered-Through the eye.

7 – Mortal Kombat series

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While many of us will remember these games fondly, however we must share a thought for German and Brazilian gamers who never had the sound of “toasty” ringing in their ears, or had their screens filled with more blood than the Friday the 13th film. Since 1992, the Mortal Kombat series has brought controversy to gaming. Over the top fight sequences and extreme graphic violence ensured the games got the publicity, but no one expected them to cause the inception of a government agency.

6 – Left 4 Dead 2

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Left 4 Dead 2 is a cooperative first-person shooter video game developed and published by Valve Corporation. The sequel to Turtle Rock Studios’s Left 4 Dead was banned in Australia last year for being cursed with the affliction of not being suitable for under 18s. The zombie apocalypse, first-person shooter featured decapitation, dismemberment, wound detail and piles of dead bodies. Unfortunately for the game’s developers, the Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC) in Australia does not have a games rating higher than MA15+.

5 – Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

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The sandbox instalment of San Andreas which has caused the most uproar in the series. The game featured an almost impossible to find mini game know as Hot Coffee. The mini game portrays sexual intercourse between two characters in the game. Once this became public knowledge, the ERSB was forced to re-rate the game and pull it from shelves in about 85pc of stores. A later edited version of the game with a “cold coffee” patch forbidding players from accessing the mini game was released.

4 –EA Sports MMA

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EA Sports MMA is a fighting video game which was developed by EA Tiburon and published by EA Sports from 2008 to 2010. So why was it banned in Denmark? Was it the brutal kicks and merciless chokes? Nope. It was the energy drinks. EA Sports MMA featured in-game advertisements for the caffeine and sugar concoctions before bouts, and that’s against that law in that country. Rather than produce an alternate build of the game with those ads removed, EA just chose to let it be banned from sale instead.

3 – Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon AW

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Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 isn’t just an insanely long title, it’s also a well-reviewed tactical shooter. Unfortunately, the game’s opening mission doesn’t paint the city of Ciudad Juarez in such a good light. Your tactical team works with Mexican authorities to clear out guerillas in the city streets, engaging in brutal firefights. The mayor of Juarez wasn’t terribly popular with a video game painting his city as unsafe, and convinced the governor of Chihuahua to order the seizure of any copies of the game in the state and forbid it from being sold.

2 –PUBG

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PUBG has emerged as one of the most popular games around the world and perhaps that’s the reason why it is giving sleepless nights to parents, schools, universities, and the young gamers who are addicted to the game. However, the popular battle royale game was slapped with a ban in several countries. Multiple cities in India had earlier banned PUBG and police in some cities had also arrested as many as 20 people for playing the game despite the ban. PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has been banned by Jordan’s Telecommunication Regulatory Commission, and also been banned in Iraq and replaced by a ‘patriotic’ version in China where nobody dies.

1 – FORTNITE

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Fortnite is an online video game developed by Epic Games and released in 2017. Some countries have banned Fortnite for various reasons, usually having to do with the in-game violence, but also bans could be related the World Health Organization (WHO) study. Fortnite has already been banned in China and Iraq – now another middle eastern country is following suit. Jordan – a country east of Israel on the Mediterranean Sea – has indicated a ban for Fortnite is coming soon. What games do you think were banned unnecessarily, Tell us in the COMMENT section.

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