One of the biggest game releases of the year has been delayed because music lyrics in a background song could have caused offense to Muslim players.
Sony is now hastily recalling all copies of LittleBigPlanet that had been sent to retailers and manufacturing new discs of the PlayStation 3 blockbuster with the offending music track removed.
“During the review process prior to the release of LittleBigPlanet, it has been brought to our attention that one of the background music tracks licensed from a record label for use in the game contains two expressions that can be found in the Koran,” Sony said in a statement.
“We have taken immediate action to rectify this and we sincerely apologise for any offence that this may have caused.”
LittleBigPlanet was set for release in New Zealand on Thursday. A Sony Computer Entertainment Australia spokesman said the company does not yet have a new release date for the game but is confident the delay will “a couple of weeks not months”.
A post on the official PlayStation forums from “Yasser” says “we Muslims consider the mixing of music and words from our Holy Koran deeply offending (sic)” and that it was not the first time that games had contained material offensive to Muslims.
He said the offending musical track was in the first level of the third world in the game (Swinging Safari) and featured Arabic words from the Koran translated as “Every soul shall have the taste of death” and “All that is on earth will perish”.