When NIS America announced the PS Vita Exclusive Criminal Girls: Invite Only, they also mentioned that some scenes and character interactions revolving around erotic punishment of the female cast will be censored, causing quite a stir between the fanbase
The company’s forum admin “Houk” had a talk with the localization team, and he explained that the censorship will be minimal:
So after talking with the staff working on the game, this is what we’re looking at in terms of a final release:
– The punishment minigame will remain as is, with a couple small tweaks. The first is that the associated audio will not be present (moans, gasps, short phrases, etc.). The second is that for certain scenes with little to no steam, some steam effects will be added back in to obscure some potentially problematic images. This will be kept to a minimum.
– No other scenes or content will be removed. As a general approach, we are being very conscious of the general tone of the game and making sure that we retain the spirit of the story and characters without taking things too far (this will mostly consist of terminology choices and character interactions here and there).
And that’s all. I realize that for some people, even this will be enough to avoid the game. But I would like to note that we did get in touch with all of the rating boards about this title, providing them with sample scenes, images, and dialogue from the game. Based on their feedback, we decided these changes would be necessary in order to make a release possible in all regions.
Houk also added that sound effects and music should still be kept in the game, and the personality of the characters will be mostly preserved:
If there is BGM, which I’m not sure about, it should still be in there. BGM, voice, and SFX are generally all on different tracks. And while the voices will be gone, the various SFX should still be in.
And no, we’re not doing wholesale personality changes. We are, however, paying attention to specific lines that may push things in a direction we want to avoid and make sure they’re within the bounds of what we’re going for. And trust me, it’s very little compared to the total size of the game.
Finally, he explained that if the publisher felt they could release the game in its original form, they would, but that’s not the case. They understand that they might lose some sales, but they’re still serving the audience that wants to play the game despite the cuts, while not releasing it at all would serve no one.
Personally I find censorship always contemptible, but in this case I have very few doubts on the fact that NIS America had little choice, considering the combination of quite a few very relevant risk factors.
We’ll have to wait and see the exact extent of the cuts when the game will be released next spring.