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This video takes a look at the ESRB's Adults Only rating for North American video games, following the upcoming game Agony being given an AO rating in the US.
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Update: 12 hours following this video going live, the developers of Agony have now announced that they will no longer be able to provide an uncensored patch for PC players. You can find the full statement here with further info: https://steamcommunity.com/games/487720/announcements/detail/1649886530632413268
+ManaphyGames umm looks like the boycott worked lol it's not about something being changed or removed tho it's pretty obvious they changed alot for release it's about going back on their word I hate that they failed an shut down but if you don't make a product consumer's want well you won't make it simple as that
Turst I always want to be a vedio game creator but I don't have the money for college yet you need to start with rated E to make some money then later you could make a console that supports rated AO games Lolicon hentai and hentai games since they will be rated AO depends on the sexual content.
I'm from a time when video games were mostly perceived as children stuff, but nowadays there are video games with adult themes that are played by adults, so I don't see any issue with "Adult Only" games, although there might be some concern as to how easily these games could be played by children on some systems...
"Imagine if the standards to make a G-rated movie were made much more stringent - and NO OTHER type of movie could be made..." - Scott McCloud for the Comics Code history part.
And that censorship (by threat of denial of access to the market to circumvent the constitution) crippled the medium.
"Comic book death." "Comic Book Philosiphy" "Comic Book plot" "Comic book storytelling"
Yeah, when the Code was used to keep out 3rd parties and rubber stamp DC and Marvel as long as they kept in the 10-16 age range target and just recycled the same plot about every 10 years and did it for decades...
Publishers fought like mad to undo the censorship for books. While comics were still thick under code Ginsberg got Burrough's "Naked Lunch" legal. Films fought to expand the ratings. But comic book "undergrounds" were jailed, long before Mike Diana...
The message is that aside from obvious sane barriers if a game is sold to Adults no real effort should be made to block it being sold to minors, beyond those in place for spray paint, lighters, porn mags, booze, etc. Heh, when I buy nicotene lozenges to help a relative not start smoking again and am carded I go "Hey, some kid wants to quit smoking, LET HIM buy these..."
Recent news, Steam opened the doors to Adults Only games since they are PC and the consoles expertly kept them locked out. This is after the "Agony" thing. Probably was just too far, too much stupid for them. And stopped or throttled the Triggypuffwhineswecensor SJW garbage. Have enough problem with SWATters and Hackers and pervs, not going to waste time listening to Triggypuff whine. Not absolute free speech but going forward games only need to worry if they sell and are programmed good, not some whiner or pre-approval board.
So the console makers are using Circular Reasoning.. <something> is rare, so it is unimportant. So let's ban/actively-discourage <something>, which keeps it rare.
How many times can history repeat itself?
I got no problem with the ESRB but my only thing about banning Adult Only games is that you can still find a way to use third party mods and what have you to put in content to raise the ratings to adult only games anyhow. People have the ESRB system for a reason but to keep people from making pornographic, or extremely violent, hatefull games isnt right because it ultimately outta be up to us the players and customers to buy them because of it.
My thoughts regarding this?
The AO rating shouldn't be treated like any other rating by the ESRB, and should be reserved for games with a pornographic or heavily graphic sexual nature, shock/grossout elements and/or extremely intense violence of an unusual nature.
If the game is just simply intensely violent, like Hatred, that shouldn't necessarily garner an AO rating. But if a game has you going around kidnapping people to torture and kill them, extreme cult film style, that should be what garners the dreaded AO rating.
Basically, if a movie with a certain kind of content can get away with an R rating, then a game with the same content should get away with an M rating. AO should be reserved for content that would get an NC-17 or X rating if in a movie.
I find it funny. I had memories of playing Goldeneye and Perfect Dark with friends back when I was in elementary school.
When I was a high school junior in 2006, I drove home and stopped in at a GameStop which had some N64 games still for sale.
I grabbed a loose copy of Perfect Dark, an almost 7-year old game, and got carded and told I couldn't buy it because I was only 16. lmfao
I think to ban Ao games from your console is an attack on creativity and art itself. Forcing some developers to change what they originally intended just so they can release it on other platforms just isn't right to me.
This really all dates back to the video game crash in the 80s. Because the NES was marketed as a kids toy games were incorrectly branded as for kids. Despite the fact that so many t and m games have been released a good majority of people (non gamers mind you) still think games are for kids (the same people who don't watch/like anime because "cartoons are for kids") and a lot of these people actually purchase the games (albeit not for themselves for their kids or what have you) so Nintendo and Microsoft adopted this policy because it reflects the mindset of the uninformed masses. If you look back there was a game who got the AO rating on the PS2 (BMXXX before it got a censored rerelease with an M rating) and there was a HEAVY public backlash. When non gamers see an AO rating they assume the game makers are trying to corrupt their children this is the TRUE cause. Even more so than the console makers refusing to make AO games this is WHY they have those policies
Let's face it, they're using kids as an excuse. They don't want YOU playing it because they still think YOU can't handle it. Stupid religious mothers may shout and scream about their spawn being exposed, but they refuse to look after their child and expect the world to do it. People on the far right hate the idea of AO's because they hate any extreme that isn't pro-conservative agenda and feedom of speech is their biggest enemy, the far left hates it because nothing can be depicted as racist or sexist, even if it's in artistic value and anything that can be deemed too offensive to minorities is fought to be erased. It sickens me how anti-freedom of speech the first world is getting and it's being pushed by both sides.
I feel like there should be a distinction between AO and straight up porn. Make xxx an official rating or something. G for genitals if you wanna confuse the hell out of people used to movie ratings.(additionally why the heck do these industries not use use the same rating system, like E for everyone makes sense but why didn't they go with G for general audiences which people already were familiar with?) Its a bit weird that a game with no explicit depictions of intercourse in it can get the exact same rating as a game called *looks at list of AO rated games* Cyber Pornography or Wet: The Sexy Empire (absolutely incredible name) because of ludicrous violence and gore. (or god forbid someones unclothed crotch!)
I mean, the games that get Ao or originally aim for an Ao rating end up being terrible anyway.
Hatred was awful.
Agony was garbage.
Leisure Suit Larry MCL was shit.
Manhunt 2 was a bore.
Fahrenheit rated very low.
The rest follow the same suit, or they're just blatant porn games.
Biggest change I feel is adults playing video games and speaking openly about it and it becoming more common place is changing the way people view the gaming industry. Changing it from 'oh video games are just for kids and teenagers' to 'oh games are for everyone' in a similar vein that video games are targeting and being made with female gamers in mind more than in the past. With it being viewed as a more respected and universal medium I think we will see more AO titles be accepted and published as intended for target demographics and that AO will be less of a death sentence. Although this will probably take a few years after the trend has been challenged before we see it come to light (largely perhaps due to development time of projects).
Side rant - Cartoons in the west are still heavily viewed as just for kids. Which is a huge shame. Of course adult cartoons exist in the west but are often more immature as they relay on crude humour and imagery in order to be viewed as adult content as opposed to anime. Anime tends to be a lot more diverse and aimed at all ages where the adult content is suitable for children due to lack of violence, vulgarity or sex (so be rated pg etc) but is not made for children as it tells a mature story not intended for the demographic (e.g. With the Light is about raising an autistic child) and would never be made in western animation as it wouldn't be taken seriously as being for adults and just completely overlooked. While I can think of western animation that does deal with more mature subject matter it's still primarily aimed towards children (UP!, Coco, Zootopia etc) with other examples having violence, crude humour or sexual content to market it towards adults (Simpsons, Family Guy, Rick and Morty).
Side rant Conclusion - Gaming is being viewed as a more universal and respected medium for a wider range of subject matter and target demographics. Whereas western animation (outside CGI e.g. avatar) is still a limited medium primarily viewed as just for kids. So progress in one medium but not others so yay but meh... could be better.
Honestly I am tired of people constantly hating games and shaming games just because their not family friendly like it's okay not to like it but please just leave the delevopers alone don't bully, don't harass them, don't assault them, don't shame them, this goes for anyone like jesus christ I'm tired of hearing this shit constantly
Games such as RapeLay will never see the light of western shores. I have no problem with the 18+ rating, It paints me a better picture of what kind of game I’m expecting.
Sex is still somewhat of a taboo in western society, though in Japan games such as Biko, Rapelay, Battle Raper, Play Home and such are common ground in the adult gaming market. I honestly believe there is a market for sex simulation games, though the culture of lets say America and Japan is vastly different, I doubt a rape simulator will ever be exported from Japan, though more Vanilla games such as Honey Select and the Sexy Beach series could make their way on special 18+ shelves in game stores in the west.
Don't worry about it, just wanted to rebuttal your comment. ESRB is harmless really, they just rate the games, it's up to the publishers to decide what to do from there and they're the ones with the AO problem
Video games wouldn't be better off without ratings, that's such a stupid thing to say. If anything, no ratings would just heighten the hatred towards games because there's no way to know if a game is going to traumatize your child or not
The real problem is stupid parents that just ignore the rating system, then buy an M rated game for their kids, then complain that it's got mature content
Because the age of consent and base age of adulthood is 18 in the U.S. The idea was AO was for things that are seen as so bad and so adult a 17 year old would be a minor and seeing said content would break all kinds of laws. So out of fear it was made because content and adulthood laws can get a ton of people in trouble. It's dumb but the U.S really does see 17 as a minor and 18 as an adult. This is all dumb but it's why it splits. And these are not laws you need to fuck with because they will end you. No company wants to deal with the bullshit that comes from U.S consent laws.
Jill's Sandwiches Don't forget - R rated movies can be seen by anyone below the age of 17, but as long as their parents are fine with it, but the equivalent to the AO rating in film is the NC-17 rating - where you must be 18 to watch it
Jonathan Sl I don't think so. I see that they all have their own thoughts on what they should be rated. Similar to this, Germany has USK which in some instances will rate a game rated 16 (by PEGI) lower
My1 I think that's rediculous. Over in Britain too, they have the PEGI, and BBFC which both let 18 rated games and films e released. This is probably due to those companies treating 18s like M rated video games, and R rated films. Most retailers also allow 18s here, so the age rating has not as much power, and over in America, the ESRB also state that it's frustrating to not be any AO rated video games released, which shows that the rating is just neutral (which is fine), it's only the retailers and video game companies that enforce restrictions (that is a problem)
@Jared K well that no one can see nc17 below 18 is kinda obvious. but why they cant get released in most cinemas is crazy. I mean with AO it's the stores who choose to say no (which is ugly enough) but seriously what's the problem with something being 18+ that it "can't be released in most cinemas"? I havent actually seen any because I never cared enough for that kind of movies but there are probably more than enough 18+ movies in cinemas and even TV (although for TV one either needs a decent way to limit access, which can for example easily be done on many pay TV things with a PIN which gets forced or you have to send it only during certain times, when kids usually wont watch)
DaKruger Toch91 Yes. Many film companies have to tone their films down to get a R rating so it can be released in cinemas. The NC-17 rating however does have a link to the AO rated video games as they're hard to access - for instance, the AO rated video games can't be found in most game stores (but they can be found on Steam), and NC-17 films can't be released in most cinemas, and also anyone below the age of 18 can't see it
the vast majority of gamers are 18+, so I really don't see why this is all such a big problem to the point where stores won't sell adult only games. It's only 1 year older than M too. It's just ridicoulous.
ESRB can't be trusted...
Remember Call Of Duty Black Ops? It had torture scenes where you take broken glass and put it into the mouth of someone else, punch them until they bleed. Black Ops was rated Mature, it also had alcohol use and drug use. I understand Agony is in another level with baby grinding.
But AAA games are usually kept away from actual rating , it sucks a lot that when new devs arise they try to chop down their success like this. ESRB might be doing well but my opinion is they're being bought off by big companies.
Only porn games should be rated Adults Only. I've seen nothing but gore in the real world. As for Steam, It appears that they're violating their own rules by allowing Genital Jousting in their library.
I'm left unconvinced that this is a major issue. You give up some freedom, but I believe there's a point of diminishing return where an even higher degree of violence/nudity doesn't add much value to what your game is trying to express anyway. Does Wolfenstein need even more violence to be more engaging or better demonstrate the evil of Nazism? Not at all. It gets its point across just fine; any more graphic violence might make it unbearable for even the most hardened players.
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