GAMING BLEND

Are Brahmin The Reason For Fallout 3's Cancellation in India?

By Pete Haas 2008-10-22 12:02:25 discussion comments
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Being composed mainly of ugly Americans, Blend Games normally doesn't report on whether or not a game is canceled overseas but India has about three times as many people as the U.S. so this seemed worth noting: Microsoft India has announced that it has scuttled plans to release Fallout 3 in India.

A press release from Microsoft India, obtained by GamingIndians, states that "in light of cultural sensitivities in India, we have made the business decision to not bring Fallout 3 into the country." A release of the PS3 and PC versions of Fallout 3 was never planned for India but the cancellation of the 360 version now leaves the country completely Fallout-less.

I consider myself largely ignorant about Indian culture but: could the cancellation have been about cows? In the Fallout games, survivors of the apocalypse use "brahmin" - two-headed cows mutated by radiation - as pack animals. In Hindu religion, cows are revered and it wouldn't surprise me if the ability of players to shoot up herds of "brahmin" in Fallout 3 factored into the cancellation. The name of the radiated cows probably didn't help matters, either, as the term originates in India. "Brahman" is the name of a breed of cattle from India and the name of a prominent concept in Hindu religion ("the primal source and ultimate goal of all beings"). "Brahmin" is also the term for "the class of educators, scholars and preachers in Brahminical Hinduism" according to Wikipedia, which is making me sound a lot smarter than I am here. Could any or all of this hit some sort of nerve?

Obviously, this is just early morning speculation and there's plenty of other things in Fallout 3 to offend one's sensibilities: drug use, gore, violence, and, of course, a depiction of a nuclear apocalypse. Perhaps Microsoft India will elaborate further on the reasoning in the future. Anyway, to get back on track with Blend Games' America-centrism: Fallout 3 will be released in North America on October 28th.
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