Postal 2 now available for Mac

Running With Scissors has announced that its first-person shooter Postal 2 is now shipping for the Macintosh. At least for now, the only place you'll be able to get it is Running With Scissors' own e-store.

The sequel to a game released in 1997, Postal 2's name is taken from the colloquial expression "going postal," meaning to go on a murderous rampage, as some U.S. Postal Service workers have done in years past. The violent shooter is rife with satirical references to politics, the video game industry, race relations and more. Postal 2 has a unique twist: You needn't use violence at all to accomplish your tasks and progress from mission to mission.

Postal 2's marketing clearly revels in the conflict you can create, however, and the violence is reflected in an "M" rating (for Mature) from the Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB). The ESRB notes that the game contains blood and gore, intense violence, mature humor, mature sexual themes, strong language and the use of drugs.

Banned in Auckland

The havoc you can wreak in Postal 2 is so egregious that the New Zealand Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC) recently outlawed the game all together, concluding the game's goal is simply to let the player see "how much violence and humiliation he or she can inflict on human beings." Mere possession of the game in The Land of the Long White Cloud is punishable by fines; distributors or retailers who sell the game run the risk of imprisonment.

Apple doesn't have any stores in New Zealand yet, but that's not stopping the company from passing on it. Apple has been offered the game for sale in its retail stores, but will not distribute it. Running With Scissors' founder Vince Desi drew his own conclusions about Apple's refusal to carry Postal 2.

"The company that brought us the famous '1984' Superbowl commercial has obviously become Big Brother. The Mac market is regarded as the most mature, sophisticated demographic in the home computer world. But Apple obviously doesn't feel its users should be able to make their own choices when it comes to the software they buy for their Macs," said Desi.

An Apple spokesperson contacted by MacCentral declined to comment on the reason behind Apple's decision not to put the game on store shelves.

The original Postal was a sprite-based action game. Postal 2 is a first-person shooter that uses the Unreal engine. Its Macintosh conversion was handled by Ryan Gordon, the same developer who created the Macintosh conversions of Unreal Tournament 2003 and 2004, America's Army and other games.

System requirements for Postal 2 call for a G3/700MHz or faster, 256MB RAM, 2GB hard disk space and ATI Radeon or Nvidia GeForce2 MX or faster 3D Graphics with at least 32MB VRAM. It retails for US$19.95.

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