Deep Silver has said that it is "deeply sorry" for its decision to include a statue of a headless female torso in Dead Island Riptide's Zombie Bait Edition.
In a statement published via Twitter, Deep Silver said that it "sincerely regrets" its decision to include the "gruesome" figurine, and that it was "committed to making sure this will never happen again".
"Like many gaming companies, Deep Silver has many offices in different countries, which is why sometimes different versions of Collector's Editions come into being for North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia," said the publisher.
"For the limited run of the Zombie Bait Edition for Europe and Australia, a decision was made to include a gruesome statue of a zombie torso, which was cut up like many of our fans had done to the undead enemies in the original Dead Island.
"We sincerely regret this choice. We are collecting feedback continuously from the Dead Island community, as well as the international gaming community at large, for ongoing internal meetings with Deep Silver's entire international team today.
"For now, we want to reiterate to the community, fans and industry how deeply sorry we are, and that we are committed to making sure this will never happen again."
It isn't yet known whether the publisher still intends to release the Zombie Bait Edition.
The "ultra rare" collector's edition attracted mass criticism from both the media and the community following its reveal yesterday afternoon, with some calling the statue a "horrible objectification of women" and "a text book example of the most extreme ends of misogynist fantasy".
This isn't the first time the series has faced criticism over accusations of sexism.
In 2011, developer Techland landed itself in hot water after the words 'Feminist Whore' were discovered in the original game's source code to describe a female character's ability.
VideoGamer.com has contacted a Deep Silver representative for further clarification on whether the publisher still intends to distribute the Zombie Bait Edition.
Source: Twitter | @deepsilver