Batman isn’t pulling any punches with an M Rating.
[dropcap size=small]I[/dropcap]t has been announced that the upcoming Batman: Arkham Knight has received at Mature (UK 18) rating. Profanity and scenes of torture have been cited by the Entertainment Software Ratings Board as two of many reasons for the rating bump.
The game’s developer, Rocksteady Studios, has appeared to have concocted a darker narrative and tone than the latest installment’s predecessors Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman: Arkham City.
According to the ratings board, some of the elements which dictated a Mature rating are as follows (minor spoilers):
“Some sequences allow players to use tank-like vehicles with machine gun turrets and rockets to shoot enemies; a vehicle’s wheels are also used to torture an enemy in one sequence.”
Cutscenes depict characters getting shot (on and off camera) while restrained or unarmed. Large bloodstains/pools of blood appear in crime scenes and in the aftermath of violent acts; one room depicts a person torturing a character on a bloody operating table.
“During the course of the game, players can shoot unarmed characters and a hostage. Neon signs in a red-light district read ‘live nude girls’ and ‘XXX.’ The words ‘b*tch,’ ‘gobsh*te,’ and ‘a*s’ appear in the dialogue.”
Rocksteady founder and Arkham Knight game director Sefton Hill recently said he was surprised to learn his game would be rated M as this was not his original intent.
He revealed that early in the game’s development, Warner Bros expressed concerns with certain scenes during a rating analysis, and asked for certain scenes to be cut. Hill worried that cutting these scenes would compromise the game’s narrative, and got DC Comics’ blessing to allow the scenes to remain. It is unclear what these scenes were, and if they have been altered in any way.
Batman: Arkham Knight launches June 2 for Xbox One,PlayStation 4, and PC.