An ad for Dead Island: Riptide has been banned in Australia.
The infamous zombie-hunting game that practically came out of nowhere and successfully gave a first-person shooter role-playing elements, Dead Island is admittedly one of the most violent and vulgar games available. There was an outcry in Australia when the sequel’s logo was found to be too offensive, even though it was basically identical to the original.
Oddly enough, it was the logo for Dead Island: Riptide that sparked the outcry, likely because the image of a man hanging from a tree isn’t replacing the letter “I” anywhere in it. The image depicts suicide from the uneducated eye, and anyone who’s recently lost a loved one might be offended. Somehow this got more attention than the opening scene with a couple setting off a gas explosion, a much more violent scenario. The ad in question is below.
AIE Australia responded to the complaint about the game’s ad, saying that the violence depicted is justifiable given the circumstance:
“I acknowledge that a degree of violence is portrayed in the advertisement in that a zombie is shown smashing a window in an attempt to enter the boat, more zombies are shown moving towards the boat in an aggressive fashion, and the implied death of the two central characters is violent, notwithstanding that it is less violent than the potential alternative. … The cinematic implication of violence in the advertisement is intended to convey the desolate terror afflicting the game characters, and I believe is contextually relevant to the product being advertised, as it conveys the hopelessness of the games’ characters as they are faced with the overwhelming horror and violence of vast numbers of zombies hunting them, without actually depicting the violence of zombie vs character interaction in the game.”
Concerning the logo for Dead Island: Riptide that caused such controversy in Australia, they added:
“The second scene which is primarily the logo of the game does not imply or portray suicide in any fashion. The silhouette of the zombie hanging from the tree is presented without any explanation or back-story, and no connection to the preceding scene is offered; certainly it could not be extrapolated that the implied suicide by explosion of the couple might lead to either of them being hung by the neck from a tree.”
In the end, AIE Australia replaced the ad for Dead Island: Riptide, replacing the hanging man with a free-walking female zombie in the logo, and expressed their disappointment.
What do you think of the banned ad for Dead Island: Riptide? Is Australia going too far with this?