If you read the headline and had your heart filled with cheer, don’t get your hopes up too high just yet. If you’re a crowdfunding backer of Agony and you’ve been following the controversy surrounding the game’s uncensored, Adults Only version, then you know that Madmind Studio, the independent Polish game studio, has been running into trouble getting the uncensored version of the game made available to the general public and backers.
The Polish developers signed a distribution deal for the game to appear on the Xbox One, PS4, and Steam that ended up nullifying their ability to distribute the Adults Only patch as they had originally promised. They cited legal issues and distribution restrictions for officially releasing the patch.
During a lengthy Q&A session, Madmind attempted to address why the game’s uncensored version wasn’t made available. They were also asked if it would be possible to release the uncensored content through a GOG.com version. According to Madmind, they responded by stating…
“The contract with the publishers did not allow us to make the Adult Only version. We could not do anything about it. Violation of these laws would cause huge financial penalties, which would result in immediate closure of the company and the game would not have been issued. Without publishers – the production process would be interrupted and the game would not appear. We are in talks with GOG. If they agree, Agony will be released on this platform in a version with all patches and without censorship, with official AO rating.”
This isn’t too surprising given Valve’s policy on preventing developers from issuing uncensored patches through Steam in any capacity. This change in policy took place following a censorship campaign led against Valve by the religious organization NCOSE. The organization claimed that Valve was using Steam to distribute porn to children.
What we don’t know is what the distribution deal between Madmind and the platform holders states regarding other third-party distributors such as CD Projekt Red’s GOG.com.
Some users suggested for Madmind to simply release the uncensored content via a patch. The company stated that they tried to make it available as a mod but they said that it would still be classified as them turning the game into an Adults Only product, stating…
“Of course. We even tried to do it as a mod – but it does not matter how this content would leak to the internet – it would be Madmind’s fault, and we would get huge financial penalties.”
Obviously, this brings up the next most obvious question: if releasing the uncensored content as an official patch, or mod, for the Steam version of Agony would get Madmind in legal trouble, what would make it viable for them to release an uncensored mod/patch for the GOG.com version?
Well, this all depends on whether or not the GOG.com version would be compatible with the Steam version. If the GOG.com patch doesn’t work with the Steam version, but still makes the GOG.com version into the Adults Only version, would Valve still come after Madmind even though the Steam version is still rated ‘M’ for Mature?
It seems to get into tricky territory.
As Madmind pointed out, they’re still trying to work out the agreements with GOG.com. So depending on how things go there will determine how, if, or when gamers can get their hands on the uncensored content for Agony.
GOG.com recently began stocking all-ages versions of adult themed visual novels that can be patched back into their uncensored versions. Additionally they noted that they would not be blocking 18+ patches, opposite of Steam. So some gamers are hoping that GOG.com allows Madmind to release Agony onto their platform along with allowing Madmind to release the uncensored patch for the DRM-free GOG.com version.
And for those wondering, yes, the content is quite sexually gruesome, containing guro rape sequences, genital mutilation, and infanticide. You can view all of the uncensored content here.
Agony is available right now with an ‘M’ for Mature rating, with plenty of censorship being applied for the Steam, PS4 and Xbox One versions of the game.