Midway is in desperate need of a best-selling blockbuster, as any industry analyst will tell you that the 50-year-old company is circling the drain. While Midway is likely banking on the upcoming Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe to fill that role, an increasing amount of violence within the title has apparently pushed the game to M-rated territory -- which typically doesn't help sales during the holiday season. Therefore, we can't say we're surprised at Midway's decision to tone down the "toasty" brawler in order to keep the T-rating they've been shooting for.

In a recent interview with Kotaku, Ed Boon explained that the developer had been working with the ESRB to squeeze as much brutality into the game while still remaining teen-friendly. However, one known casualty of some recent content cutbacks is the Joker's wicked "prank gun" fatality (posted after the break), the fatal part of which will now take place off-screen. It's unclear what else has been changed to appease the ESRB, though it's safe to assume that the final product won't contain any unceremoniously removed spinal cords, or, lamentably, disappearing pencils.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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