A while back, we mentioned that PQube will be bringing Omega Labyrinth Z to Europe and North America. However, it seems the publisher will not be able to sell the rogue-like RPG in the UK. The VSC Rating Board have decided not to give the game the Certificate of Classification it needs to release in the region.
Omega Labyrinth Z has been refused a Certificate of UK Release. Visit our website for full details: https://t.co/ce4v2uqBVW
— VSC Rating Board (@GamesRatingUK) March 12, 2018
From the VSC:
The grounds for this decision are as follows: – The likely harm being caused to a viewer or potential viewer, e.g. children or young people.The game is explicit in its setting within a “school” environment and the majority of the characters are young girls – one child is referred to as being a “first year” student and is seen holding a teddy bear. The game clearly promotes the sexualisation of children via the sexual interaction between the game player and the female characters. The style of the game is such that it will attract an audience below the age of 18.There is a serious danger that impressionable people, i.e. children and young people viewing the game would conclude that the sexual activity represented normal sexual behaviour. There is a constant theme of sexual innuendo and activity throughout the game that suggests behaviour likely to normalise sexual activity towards children. As a means of reward gained by successfully navigating the game, the player has the means to sexually stimulate the female characters by using either a hand held remote device or touch screen software.The VSC Rating Board believes this content in a game, which would have strong appeal to non-adult players, is an issue which would be unacceptable to the majority of UK consumers and, more importantly, has the potential to be significantly harmful in terms of the social and moral development of younger people in particular.
In essence, the VSC is concerned about the consequences of allowing children to play the game. Of course, they are not the only ones who think this. PEGI, CERO, and the ESRB agree that children should not be exposed to its content. That is precisely why they have rated it for more mature audiences.
This decision makes it illegal to sell the game in physical format in the UK. In theory, companies could still sell the game in digital format. However, Sony does not allow games to appear on the digital storefront without an official rating. Since the law only applies to the sale of the product, those in the region will still be able to purchase the game from elsewhere. Both the PS4 and Vita are capable of running games from other regions, so UK residents who want to play the game should be able to do so with little trouble.
PQube does not currently have a specific release date for Omega Labyrinth Z. However, the publisher intends on releasing it in North America and parts of Europe in Spring 2018. The DRPG will be available on Vita and PS4 in digital and physical formats.