"It is unfortunately the case that no one in the entertainment software industry is immune from hacking," explained Take-Two chairman Strauss Zelnick. "We hope that consumers will not engage in hacking or download illegally modified copies of our games. We encourage them to enjoy our games as they are meant to be played."
"All of the game material, and especially these specific edits, was submitted to and reviewed by the ESRB in accordance with requirements regarding disclosure that were enacted two years ago and any contrary suggestion is inaccurate and irresponsible," reads the company's statement.
Original Story: In an unsurprising revelation that is beginning to seem all too familiar, a group of hackers is reported to have once again enabled purposefully disabled content in a title from Grand Theft Auto developer Rockstar.
This time around, the game is Manhunt 2 (PS2, Wii, PSP), which was just released yesterday. By editing the title's initialization files, players of the PSP edition can supposedly experience the uncensored version of the game that was originally rated Adults Only and denied release.
In order to secure a retail release for Manhunt 2, Rockstar "modified" the violent title, resubmitted it to the ESRB, and received a Mature rating. The company's VP of product development Jeronimo Barrera maintains the game was not neutered.
The unlocking process is a little more complex than that of the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (PC, PS2, Xbox) "Hot Coffee" scandal, which required a cheat device or editing of the game's files to unlock the sex mini-game. In order to play the so-called uncensored version of Manhunt 2, PSP owners must modify their system to play homebrew code, copy the game data from the UMD, edit its configuration files, and then boot the game from the Memory Stick.
Whether or not that complicated process will have an effect on the possible repercussions remains to be seen. Though the Hot Coffee scenes of San Andreas were not attainable through regular gameplay, their mere presence on the disc was enough to cause the ESRB to re-rate the game Adults Only and force Rockstar to release a version of the game with said content removed.