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Dead Island: Riptide TV advert banned for showing couple committing suicide

Publisher claims it was "contextually relevant".

An Australian TV advert for zombie survival game Dead Island: Riptide has been pulled after complaints over its depiction of suicide.

The Aussie Advertising Standards Board banned the commercial despite pleas from the game's local distributor AIE that the use of suicide was "contextually relevant" to the game (thanks, Kotaku).

"The cinematic implication of violence in the advertisement is intended to convey the desolate terror afflicting the game characters," a statement read.

"It conveys the hopelessness of the games' characters as they are faced with the overwhelming horror and violence of vast numbers of zombies hunting them, without actually depicting the violence of zombie vs character interaction in the game."

The Advertising Standards Board failed to agree, however.

"The Board noted the fantasy content and the stylised nature of the advertisement and considered that the issue of suicide is a depiction of violence which is not justifiable even in the context of an advertisement for a computer game aimed at adults," it said.

"The issue of suicide is a very significant community concern and considered that the use of images which are strongly suggestive of suicide is not appropriate in the context of a television advertisement for a computer game."

The advert, included below, shows a young couple holding a lighter in a room filled with petrol canisters. As the camera pans out, we see they are trapped within the ruins of a plane which has been surrounded by zombies. The commercial concludes as the pair detonate the bomb, and themselves, killing the zombies outside.

It's not the first time that Dead Island: Riptide's marketing has hit the headlines. The game's publisher Deep Silver was forced to apologise for the game's awful Zombie Bait bikini edition, which included a bloodied and mutilated female torso.

"We sincerely regret this choice," Deep Silver said prior to the product's release, although it did not stop the collectible edition hitting shop shelves.

Cover image for YouTube video