LISA: Definitive Edition publisher Serenity Forge has announced the PS5, PS4 versions releasing today have undergone some content changes in order to comply with Sony's rules and restrictions. Most notably, a significant change that has affected all versions — including Xbox and Nintendo Switch editions — has been made in two scenes that were deemed racist. On top of that, Sony has asked for more changes to be made to content elsewhere in order for the game to release on PS5, PS4.
The Salvation Ranger introduction scene and a flashback involving Junior were considered racist in the original version, and both have now "had small alterations made to them". The Colorado, USA-based developer Dingaling Productions said: "Whether or not to make these changes was not easy to decide, but ultimately it became an exciting prospect to alter some content in a small way in hopes that it welcomes and includes more players."
This change applies to all versions of the Definitive Edition, but Sony has gone one step further with its demands. This version bundles in a sequel called LISA: The Joyful, where you play a 12-year-old version of the protagonist. To reflect this, the PS5, PS4 versions have altered the naming of some items. Cigarettes have become "cigarette candy", Joy isn't called "pills" anymore, and alcohol has become "soda". Dingaling Productions added: "Basically, the changes are not a big deal. We just wanted to make everyone aware of it in advance, because we know that LISA fans will notice it as a difference from the original games."
A blog post from the developer goes on to explain how important it was to preserve the original content of the game, but the changes made now better express the "main themes and values" of the game. "The stories, jokes, and characters of LISA are never meant to attack or denigrate who someone is as a person. Instead, they are meant to motivate reflection. And although the game features dark characters, it doesn't want to wallow in this notion. Quite the opposite. Even when the world feels like it's completely lost and you are all alone in this mess, you still have to take care of yourself."
LISA: Definitive Edition is available now on PS5, PS4 for £19.99 / $24.99. How do you react to this news? Share your thoughts in the comments below.