The act of pegging is not one the Australian Classifications Board endorses. According to the ACB, who offered insight into why the now-owned by Deep Silver title was banned, it’s not okay that the novelty weapon is ”designed to penetrate the anus of enemy characters and civilians”.

Just the tip?

According to the report sourced by IGN, the tool ”constitutes a visual depiction of implied sexual violence that is interactive and not justified by context”. It’s true at least that Saints Row IV lacks nuance, but its whacky and over-the-top violent and sexual content is exactly why people buy it.

“The game includes a weapon referred to by the Applicant as an ‘Alien Anal Probe’. “The Applicant states that this weapon can be ‘shoved into enemy’s backsides’. The lower half of the weapon resembles a sword hilt and the upper part contains prong-like appendages which circle around what appears to be a large dildo which runs down the centre of the weapon.

“When using this weapon the player approaches a (clothed) victim from behind and thrusts the weapon between the victim’s legs and then lifts them off the ground before pulling a trigger which launches the victim into the air. After the probe has been implicitly inserted into the victim’s anus the area around their buttocks becomes pixelated highlighting that the aim of the weapon is to penetrate the victim’s anus. The weapon can be used during gameplay on enemy characters or civilians.”

They end by saying that ”a weapon designed to penetrate the anus of enemy characters and civilians constitutes a visual depiction of implied sexual violence that is interactive and not justified by context and as such the game should be Refused Classification.”

The game will almost certainly be released in Australia, without the probing.

ANALysis

You can’t give the ACB too much of a hard time about this. Allocating ratings is all about justifying a works content, and it’s difficult to justify the content of superfluously sexual and violent games. When asked “why are you allowing players to attack people with giant sex toys designed for anal pentration,” the best response you’ve got is “because it’s hilarious”. We shouldn’t censor games, but this is more about convincing certification boards that everything is creatively justified in a viable context. It’s the publishers job to do that. Lest we forget these are the guys who tried to ship us severed boobs.