Video games have had a massive international impact, and nowadays, with the grand ol internet readily available at our fingertips – or rather, via our controllers – it’s easy to find new games and play ones from developers all over the world. But just because accessibility isn’t a problem, doesn’t mean these games translate well in other countries. And I’m talking about content friends, not actual transitions; often games face censorship depending on where they’re being released. So today, we’re taking a look at the differences between several games that have been distributed across the globe and how they differ from region to region with our list of the top 10 video games that look different around the world. 10 Fallout 3 2008’s Fallout 3 redefined the franchise under Bethesda’s development. While the game was widely critically acclaimed, it did provoke a bit of controversy from one country that chose to censor a particular mission – The Power of the Atom.
Often considered as one of the best missions in the franchise, you’re given the power of choosing whether to disarm or detonate an atomic bomb, with the latter destroying the city of Megaton. Japan, for obvious reasons, had the mission removed from the game, along with changing the name of the weapon The Fat Man, due to its similarity to the bomb that was dropped on Nagasaki on August 9th of 1945. 9 Until Dawn Every decision you make in Until Dawn is a vital one – your task in this 2015 survival horror is to try to survive the night, until dawn the next day, while up at a remote lodge.
You alternate between the individual stories of several young adults who have returned to the lodge to commemorate the death of two of their friends the year before, except this visit turns into more of a horror show than a memorial. So naturally, there’s a whole lot of terrifying moments and sickening visuals in the game – which is something that didn’t bode well with Japan. Certain parts of the game were ‘blacked out’, like one moment where you choose between saving your friend or potential love interest from a massive saw that threatens to cut one of them in half. The actual impact of the saw was blacked out. 8 Mother 2 From violence to a very different kind of controversial subject matter, let’s talk a little bit about Mother 2, or rather, Earthbound, as it was known in North America. For starters, Mother was never released in North America, hence the name change.
You play as the protagonist Ness, who, after investigating a nearby meteorite crash, goes on a journey to prevent an evil alien force from consuming the world with hate. One part of the game features Ness having a nightmare. In the Japanese version, he’s naked. In the North American one, he’s not. 7 Carmageddon Inspired by the 1975 movie Death Face 2000, racing Carmageddon was released in 1997, and its reception was one of scandal, despite selling like hot cakes. Several countries outright banned it, while others required it to be censored before certifying it for release. This included the UK and Germany – a country that will be making more appearances as we continue with this list. Developers were required to remove all blood and gore, and replace the pedestrians you could strike for bonuses with robots and zombies, replacing blood with black oil and green goo. 6 Final Fight Final Fight was initially supposed to be a sequel to the original 1987 Street Fighter, but was released separately, and is considered to be a cousin of sorts to the game since both take place in the same world. Now, for context, the Street Fighter franchise had gotten some heat for having female characters in the game – the idea of giving a woman a beat down was not cool, since there was a major lack of female video game characters at the time.
And, you know, despite the fact that the female characters also packed a punch back. Anywho, to solve this problem, two characters named Poison and Roxy were changed from cisgender females to transgender females, which didn’t bode well with the North American release. The US changed the characters to Billy and Sid, who were notably less remarkable. Both characters would eventually return to the franchise, but years later, with Poison appearing in Street Fighter X Tekken, and Roxy in Street Fighter 5.
5 Legend of Zelda Ocarina– Skull Kid Throughout most of The Legend of Zelda Majora’s Mask, the mischievous character Skull Kid dons a mask on his face. But the antagonist also makes an appearance in Ocarina of Time, and appears without his mask. The face under the mask if one that shares a lot of similarities to a black face caricature – a racist portrayal of a black person with overly emphasized mocking features. Not cool. When Majora’s Mask came out in North America, the character was given a different kind of face under his mask – a wooden one, which many feel is a much better look in general for Skull Kid.
4 Team Fortress 2 Once again Germany and their strict guidelines on violence in media appear again on this list. The first person shooter Team Fortress 2 was censored by the country to remove blood and gore, and to overall make you foes less human-like. This meant changing the graphics in the game so that your enemies, rather than being human, were robots. When you shot at them, they’d explode into gears and mechanical bits rather than into animated blood baths. The interesting part is, there’s a whole section of the game that features decapitated heads, and rather than remove the heads, the blood beneath them was removed and replaced with oil.
3 GTA 3 The Grand Theft Auto series has ALWAYS been filled with violence and satire that has gotten its fair share of controversy over the years. While the franchise has been notoriously banned in some countries, others censored parts of it heavily like Carmageddon, resulting in the removal of excessive blood and gore. When GTA 3 came out, both Germany and France cut out the existence of blood, and focused on the pedestrian NPCs in the game. When attacked, pedestrians didn’t lose limbs, and if an NPC was on the ground, they couldn’t be attacked any further – in other words, you couldn’t kick dead bodies.
They just didn’t react. 2 Pokemon – Jynx Pokemon has remained as one of the most beloved franchises of all time. But it, too, has undergone censorship in order to avoid racial insensitivity. The Japanese version of the early Pokemon games featured one Pokemon, yinx, with black skin. Combined with her large eyes and big pink lips, the character, without a doubt, shared characteristics to blackface, so of course it was deemed racist. The North American version of the game, along with the anime, changed Jynx’s skin to purple rather than black. Which, while it didn’t fix the problem entirely, made the Pokemon mildly less offensive. 1 Wolfenstein The New Order Wolfenstein has always been a franchise that dealt with killing Nazis.
Which these days has become quite relevant again. Social context aside, the revamped recent titles are first person shooters concerned with the resistance against the Nazi power that persevered past World War 2 and now dominates the globe. You play as BK Blazkowicz, and,as you’d expect, the game has a whole lot of Nazi imagery in it. Rather than keep the Nazi references in, Germany replaced the swatiskas and all other Nazi branding with the Wolfenstein logo, and changed the Reich to the Regime.
All things historically considered, makes sense. The New Colossus was also censored, which included removing Hitler’s famous mustache. Germany has very strict guidelines as to what can be depicted, and have anti-Nazi laws in place. There we have it friends! Have you ever bought any of these games in the countries we mentioned on this list? If you’re from Germany, how do you feel about the censorship there? We’d love to hear all of your thoughts in the comments below! If you dug this video please show us some love by hitting those like and subscribe buttons if you haven’t already, and don’t forget to check out the other videos we have available on our channel, like the ones in our recently uploaded playlist that’s currently flashing on your screen right this minute.
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