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'Partial nudity' said to hinder M-rated Halo 2 release

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An "obscure content error which includes partial nudity" is allegedly behind the set-back Microsoft this week made to the Windows Vista version of Halo 2, originally due 8 May, then 22 May and now 31 May.

Microsoft doesn't appear to have stated outright the reason for the latest delay, but in an email website Next-Gen claims to have received from the company, the software giant said: "It has come to our attention that an unfortunate, obscure content error which includes partial nudity was included in our initial production of Halo 2 for Windows Vista."

Interestingly, the content does not appear to have been removed. The email continued: "We have updated the initial game packaging at retailers with a label, so customers are aware before purchasing the game. Additionally, we’ve developed an online update which can be downloaded from www.halo2.com to remove the content."

Both the PC version of Halo 2 and the Xbox version, released way back when, are stamped with the US games rating M, marking them as suitable only for "mature" players, held to be anyone aged 17 years or older.

Our minds inevitably wander back to the similarly rated Duke Nukem 3D, which was full of scantilly clad females, and this didn't generate anywhere near the fuss Halo 2's partial nudity - does the Master Chief get his kit off? - has.

But then we live in more panicky times for games developers and publishers, as the reaction to Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas' infamous hidden 'hot coffee' scene prompted.

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