For weeks now developer Rockstar Games has been in a heated dispute with the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) over the release of Manhunt 2 in the UK.
However, we can now reveal that the company has won its appeal against the BBFC, which had banned the title in the UK in June 2007. In a four votes to three, favoring Rockstar, the Video Appeals Committee decided that Manhunt 2 should be granted an 18+ rating, thus allowing it into UK retail.
Despite this, the BBFC are still pondering on the possibility of taking the matter even further:
"We won't make a decision until we've seen the full printed judgment, which we're expecting this week," said BBFC spokesperson, Sue Clark, "There are few options open to us - we can go to the High Court to appeal the decision - but we'll be making a further statement when we've seen the full report."
As for Rockstar Games themselves, well it appears that they are pleased with the decision and is now focusing to move on.
"We are committed to making great interactive entertainment, while also marketing our products responsibly and supporting an effective rating system."
"We are pleased that the decision of the VAC has recognized that Manhunt 2 is well within the bounds established by other 18+ rated entertainment."
Rockstar later went on to mention that it is in no rush to release Manhunt 2 in the UK as they see initial rejection as a huge step to overcome. In a sense, even though Rockstar won their appeal, the BBFC still left a sour taste in their mouth, thus making them contemplate further about their ideas of releasing such content in the region. Hopefully this holds no bearing on upcoming titles such as Midnight Club: Los Angeles and Grand Theft Auto IV.