We Happy Few Dev Addresses Australian Classification Denial; Customers May Be Refunded
We Happy Few, the open world game developed by Compulsion Games, has been recently denied classification in Australia, meaning that it cannot be sold in the country. Following the classification denial, the development team addressed the situation.
Compulsion Games will try to work with the Australian Classification Board on the matter and try to get a rating for the game. If nothing changes, the team will issue refunds and work with affected backers to figure something out.
We will work with the ACB on the classification. If the government maintains its stance, we will make sure that you can get a refund, and we will work directly with affected Kickstarter backers to figure something out. We would appreciate if you give us a little bit of time to appeal the decision before making a call.
The studio spokesperson commented on the reasons behind the classification denial, which is related to drug use.
We Happy Few is set in a dystopian society, and the first scene consists of the player character redacting material that could cause offense to 'society at large', as part of his job as a government 'archivist'. It’s a society that is forcing its citizens to take Joy, and the whole point of the game is to reject this programming and fight back. In this context, our game’s overarching social commentary is no different than Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, or Terry Gilliam's Brazil
The game explores a range of modern themes, including addiction, mental health and drug abuse. We have had hundreds of messages from fans appreciating the treatment we’ve given these topics, and we believe that when players do get into the world they’ll feel the same way. We’re proud of what we’ve created.
We Happy Few launches on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on a yet to be confirmed 2018 release date.