To say that South Park: The Stick of Truth will be provocative is like saying the next Call of Duty will be about some guns. It's a game that seems to actively goad the player - daring them to take offence. Thanks to our office layout, I've been experiencing it entirely through the facial expressions of our reviewer Andy Kelly. He's been on a rollercoaster of shock, disbelief and amusement - partly because, in the UK, the PC version of the game hasn't been censored.
As reported by
, Ubisoft have censored certain scenes from The Stick of Truth for the game's European console release. On PC, things are little more complicated. Most countries will receive the game in its uncensored form but, according to a Tweet by digital retailer
, censoring will occur in "Germany, Austria, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong & Taiwan".
The censorship seems designed as a pre-emptive measure against territories notorious for refusing classification or requesting cuts. For console, that's led to an inefficient carpet bombing of the entire continent. Thanks to PC's mostly digitally delivered gaming scene, those strikes can be far more targeted.
As for what's being covered up, BT.com provided a list from their review documentation:
A mini-game where a doctor is performing an abortion on the player.
A mini-game where the player is performing an abortion on the character Randy.
Five 'anal probing' scenes in which characters are 'actively' being probed.
Censored scenes are replaced with on screen text that describes the covered action. As reported by
, swastikas have also been removed from the German version of the game. Yes, it's got swastikas. Are you really that surprised?
Luckily, even if you're in a territory that does miss out on five anal-probes, the game will likely still include plenty of other puerility to enjoy.
South Park: The Stick of Truth is due out 7th March.