Striking Distance and publisher Krafton have announced the Japanese version of upcoming space-horror The Callisto Protocol has been cancelled.
This is due to the game's violent content, which means it was unable to secure an age rating with the CERO (Japan's equivalent of PEGI in Europe and the ESRB in North America).
The developer has stated those who pre-ordered this version of the game will receive a full refund for their purchase.
This news was shared on The Callisto Protocol's Japanese twitter feed, a translation (which has been verified by Eurogamer) of which reads:
"The Callisto Protocol has decided to stop the release of the Japanese version. As of now, the CERO rating cannot be passed. We have decided that we would no longer be able to provide you with the experience you need. We hope everyone in Japan will understand. If you have already pre-ordered, we will refund you."
Meanwhile, Striking Distance's CEO Glen Schofield has spoken about his desire to see a sequel, and addressed his controversial tweet earlier in the year that appeared to promote crunch culture.
Speaking to Inverse, Schofield shared he already wants to make a sequel, stating the team has many "cool ideas" about what it wants to do next.
"I always want to keep making the next big thing. Even after I finish a game, I'm already thinking [about] what's next," he proclaimed.
As for that aforementioned tweet, Schofield admitted he "messed up" here.
"We're a small-ish team and we were so good about it through the entire development, but at the end I messed up and we worked more than we should have," he said. "That one got away from us. The social media backlash was educational and I hope it's a catalyst for change overall."
The CEO continued, "I can tell you this, I'm going to make sure that's not a thing that happens in our next project or any future project. This one was on me."
The Callisto Protocol is heading to PlayStation, Xbox, and PC (with a 60 FPS performance mode) on 2nd December. Ahead of its release, our video team got to have a hands-on preview of the game, which you can see in the video above.