No sooner have we passed the tempest of Manhunt 2, than Germany announces another game refused a rating. In this case, Clive Barker’s Jericho.

This one is a horror shoot-em-up, and presumably has plenty of mess. Too much for the German USK (the ratings board). Unrated games are not illegal, but heavily restricted.

They can’t be displayed in stores, no ads for them are allowed, and they can’t be purchased online (where confirming a buyer’s age is near impossible).

So technically, when the game is released, if a store has it in stock and you’re an adult, you could buy the game. It’s unclear at the moment how many stores will order in copies, given the restrictions. Maybe they could put up signs saying “We have the game that can’t be named” ;)

The game is also scheduled for release on the Xbox and PS3. However, neither Sony nor MS will sell a game that has no rating. So Germans who own those consoles are out of luck, at least as far as their country is concerned.

As other sites have pointed out, though, anyone can cross over into Austria and buy the game there. Anyone of the right age, of course. Though if they could do that, they might just as well try the local store first.

Codemasters, unlike Rockstar, has said they won’t make any changes to Jericho. Of course, it’s a little different this time, as the ESRB has granted an “M” to the game, rather than the dreaded “AO” that the original Manhunt 2 received.

The USK is certainly within their rights to rate, or not rate, any game as they see fit. However, it seems to me that Germany is a bit heavy-handed in this regard, especially as the game was rated “M” here, and will be available in other countries, as well.

In any case, the game is not being censored, and will be available here on the three platforms. A demo (1 gig!) is already out on the net for all of them at the moment. Remember, it’s only in Germany that you can’t get it on a console.

Which, when you think about it, is odd. If the PC version can still be sold (if discreetly), why not the console versions? Given that they will be available here and elsewhere, isn’t that somewhat hypocritical?

Germany Refuses To Rate Jericho