After weeks of unanswered questions from the game’s community, Naughty Dog finally addressed the censorship issue surrounding their post-pandemic masterpiece, The Last of Us. The studio have confirmed that this red tape has “slightly changed” the online component of the game within Australian, European, and other territories subjected to PAL regulation.
Here’s what a developer from Naughty Dog had to say about the graphic content:
“The gore and violence ratings are subject to local regulatory boards in various countries, so the game must be slightly changed in order to accommodate those choices,” the representative wrote. “If you import the North/South American version, it will not be censored, but EU/UK will be.”
These changes are most notable when playing the game’s multiplayer. In the US version of The Last of Us, for example, players hit by nail bombs or modified melee weapons are subject to dismemberment. Whereas in these repressed regions, the online characters will keep their limbs intact during an in-game execution. What’s more, blood spray has also been curtailed so as to abide by each country’s ratings board.
While the single-player campaign for The Last of Us remains untouched, supporters of the game’s multiplayer element have called for the choice to turn off the controversial gore via a toggle option, rather than removing it altogether. The online community have also stipulated that the adulteration was made in accordance with the German ratings board, USK, who are notoriously strict when it comes to violence in the medium.
Alas, given the region-free nature of the PS3, frustrated players have the option to import the unsullied US version should they see fit.
What are your thoughts on this, though? Do you believe restraining the violence in The Last of Us’ online dilutes the experience? Indeed should we have the option to adjust the violence based on individual opinion? Give us your thoughts below.