Much like their neighbors in Switzerland, Germany holds content in their video games to slightly more stringent standards than other countries on occasion. "Call of Duty: Black Ops" will have to be activated for PC; that shouldn't surprise anyone. But Germans looking to get their war on with "Black Ops" will have to buy a special Austria edition of the game and will run into some problems if they try reaching outside of their region see what North America is playing.
PC users in Germany will be unable to activate U.S. and U.K. copies of "Black Ops," an Activision representative confirmed for Joystiq. Rumors began spreading online after reports from German sites like PCGames.de claimed that un-censored copies from other countries would be banned within their borders.
So it sounds like Steam isn't going to be very cooperative if a Berlin resident happens to go visit his cousin in London for the holidays and brings home the British edition of Treyarch's new shooter. It's not totally clear what content is being rooted out and how, but games have encountered these sorts of problems for eons, most notoriously whenever symbols from a certain infamous dictator's government from the World War II era show up anywhere. That's a royal invitation for a ban over there.
They'll all be able to share copies with their Austrian friends, however, so that's nice.
Are you surprised to hear "Black Ops" will be a little different for Austria and Germany? Do you think censoring certain content is appropriate? Share your opinions with us in the comment section below.