No Gears of War 2 for Japan, Germany

Edge Online reports that upcoming Xbox 360 gore-fest Gears of War 2 will not be released in Japan or Germany.

Germany is perhaps not a surprise, given that the original 2006 GoW was banned there. Not selling the game in Japan, however, is raising some eyebrows. From the EO report:

“We can confirm that Gears of War 2 will not be available in Germany or Japan indefinitely” said the [Microsoft] spokesperson. 


The news may come as a shock to many observers as the original Gears of War was one of the first titles to crack the Japanese software charts during a time when the 360 console was selling at its slowest…

The reasons why the game will not be released remain unclear…  Edge has approached Microsoft’s offices in Japan for comment.

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  1. Neo_DrKefka says:

    I hate to break this too you bud but the 360 has been out selling the PS3 in Japan for a couple months now

  2. gamegod25 says:

    It’s true that western games have been dooing very well lately, but banning it to shut out competition seems like too much of a conspiracy theory. With the PS3/Wii so deeply entrenched in japan and lackluster at best 360 sales, I just don’t see Gears 2 as being that much of a threat. At least in Japan that is. But then I’m not expert so what the hell do I know?

    As for double standards *shrugs* what else is new? Every culture has different hot buttons when it comes to content. In the US violence and drugs are fine but so much as hint at sex and it’s the end of the world.


  3. Spartan says:

    Speaking as an none Asian American man living in Japan for more than an decade and as a former manager of several night clubs in Roppongi I can assure you that the same treatment of women runs both ways. Japanese men are no different than American, European, Asian or African men. If you think otherwise you are naïve beyond reason.  



    "The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" – Herodotus

  4. Bennett Beeny says:

    So I guess you think that US soldiers’ penchant for raping Japanese girls is just the chickens coming home to roost?  I guess you think those young girls are just evil and deserve everything they get.

    This notion that an entire nation can be evil is just juvenile.

  5. Bennett Beeny says:

    Man, I wish I lived in Germany or Japan.  If only my local game store wasn’t going to be polluted by that lame homoerotic game.

  6. Neo_DrKefka says:

    Maybe if the Gears of War cast were raping innocent women and children it would be on store selves in Japan. Sadly Japan and it’s history is a history full of them raping other countries and women. You think American Cruise Ships had it bad with the Japanese turning Western Women caught into "comfort women" but the Chinese and the Koreans had it even worse.


    Japan is just an evil vile country which doesn’t like violence unless its against a woman in another country

  7. Spartan says:

    I find that odd given breast are regularly shown on normal TV here in primetime.


    "The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" – Herodotus

  8. MaskedPixelante says:

    Yeah, it seems as though the game has officially been banned in Japan.

    —You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

  9. Awol says:

    My guess the games need to be really banned in the first place before the ECA would think about it. Also the ECA onlt deals in the USA and Canada markets currently. Microsft not choosing to release a game in a market is their choice and its hardly banning the game.

  10. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    Japan also censored the boobs in God of War and the beheadings in Ninja Gaiden, if I recall correctly.


    -Remember kids, personal responsibility is for losers! Jack Thompson is still a dick…

  11. CK20XX says:

    Aree you /sure/ you want to know?  It’s kinda… cheesy.

    Oh, ok.  The series is called Oneechanbara.  And traditionally the Japanese have been more squeemish about violence, not sex, though seeing the two combined in Oneechanbara makes me wonder if there’s a double standard.


    "They were retarded hairless pink bunnies, all of them. Except Shigeru Myamoto and… well, the good ones were just too /rare/ to be worth bothering about." – Mason Hornblower on the extinction of the human race

  12. darkenchanter says:

    Don’t forget the UK. We seem to have an issue with violence as well…


    Joining the Manhunt 2 rush on the 31st!

  13. Untouchable says:

    Name the game you mention or it doesn’t exist.



  14. Geoff says:

    I’m still surprised by Japan’s recent banning of games.

    I mean they have a game where you play a big-boobed chick in a thong bikini (is there any other kind in Japanese games?) that runs around chopping up zombies with a katana who spew out gallons of blood as you hack away at’m.

    Yet Gears 2 gets banned.

    I’m wondering if it’s really the violence or if their getting anal about how western games have, recently, been doing very well.  Japan is known for trying to shut-down overseas competition.


    Tea and cake or death! Tea and cake or death! Little Red Cook-book! Little Red Cook-book!

  15. Spartan says:

    Not in the majority of games I have see. Public hair is forbidden but many girls are dipicted with none (think lolita) and that seems to be OK.

    Note: I’m no expert on the subject I have only seen about a dozen or so such games over the past decade and none of them were censored.


    "The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" – Herodotus

  16. Dark Sovereign says:

    Japan has a boner for censorship, so everything gets a mosaic in sex games and porn and such. So, yes, there’s sex games, but you can’t see anything.

  17. Spartan says:

    Wow. Just wow! With all the explicit sex and rape games here, not to mention printed publications of the same nature as well as the Lolita variants I’m amazed something as tame as GW2 would get blocked. Then if one were to looks to the movies – after all Japan invented the splatter and mutilation flicks back in the early 70s. This is amazing to me. 


    "The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" – Herodotus

  18. AM says:

    Exactly.  "Won’t be released."  My guess is that it got a CERO Z, and MS doesn’t want to deal with it at this time.

  19. Awol says:

    Where does it say GoW2 is being banned in Japan? Its not printed here or on Edge Online. It just says it won’t be released in Germany and Japan.

  20. ronnoc says:

     For the record, Resident Evil 4’s chainsaw bit was censored for the Japanese release.  Gears 2 has a lot of chainsaw bits that are a lot worse.

  21. MaskedPixelante says:

    I guess it’s more about the competition, after all, this version is supposed to have a toggle switch that turns off the blood and the swearing.

    —You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

  22. HarmlessBunny says:

    Yeah the recent string of banning western games either rings of harsher censorship issues or to prevent competition…either way it is very unfortunate :\

  23. Nocturne says:

    Is it that these games are not being allowed to be released in Japan, or that the publisher/distributor is deciding not to release in Japan?


    or is it all just an excuse to not hire a localisation team?

  24. olstar18 says:

    Forget the porn vending machine, some countries hold violence as worse than nudity and sex in media, what about their Biohazard series (aka Resident Evil).

  25. MaskedPixelante says:

    Wow, I expect this sort of thing with Germany, but JAPAN? The country that has a porn vending machine doesn’t want this?

    —You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

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