GTA rating changed to AO!


Missy
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'GTA' Game Rating Changed to Adults-Only

By RON HARRIS, Associated Press Writer 6 minutes ago

SAN FRANCISCO - The video game industry on Wednesday changed to adults-only the rating of "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas," a best-selling title in which explicit sexual content can be unlocked with an Internet download.

The decision followed intense pressure from politicians and media watch groups.

The game's producer, Rockstar Games, said it stopped making the current version of the game and is now working on a new version. It said it would provide new labels to any retailer willing to continue selling the version currently on store shelves, which had been rated "M" for mature.

Rockstar's parent company, Take Two Interactive, also admitted for the first time that the sex scenes had been built into the retail version of that game — not just the PC version but also those written for Xbox and PlayStation2 consoles.

Company officials had previously suggested that a modification created by outsiders added the scenes.

"There is sex content in the disc," said Take-Two spokesman Jim Ankner. "The editing and finalization of any game is a complicated task and it's not uncommon for unused and unfinished content to remain on the disc."

The sex scenes had prompted outrage from parent's groups and politicians, who are demanding federal oversight of video game ratings.

In a statement, the president of the Entertainment Software Rating Board said the sex scenes were programmed by Rockstar "to be inaccessible to the player."

But ESRB chief Patricia Vance also acknowledged that the "credibility and utility" of the industry-run board's initial "M" rating had been "seriously undermined."

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Good. Can't say I disagree especially when considering the whole sex scandal associated with it.

I personally feel like they are pretty tight with the AO rating and that alot more titles fit into that category. Maybe this will open the door for a more accurate rating system in turn nullifying some arguements about "video games are only for kids and thus..."

Kudos to esrb for stepping up I suppose

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I assume you are talking about their claim that the content was created on by the fans instead of merely unlocked.

That is indeed extremely reprehensible and downright stupid. I guess they just tried covering their asses without thinking it through that it is extremely easy to find out where the content originates from.

It will probably create a wave that gets gamemakers to actually remove unused content from disk since, as they said, it is common practice to not clear off that room if you don't need the extra space

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Amen to the rating. Lets get some of the video games away from kids, because that is not the intended audience, nor should it be. See my comments under the Illinois thread for more on my thoughts... already wrote a good page of my own personal brand of rant over there. :)

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  • 1 month later...

I disagree with the AO rating, even with the sex scene. I have read several articles about this on CNN, Fox News, the AP Wire, etc. and all the articles I have read say that the game characters are fully clothed. That means it is considerably less graphic than scores of "R" rated movies, including some that have won Oscars.

I think Rockstar Games and GTA got a raw deal. "M" is the video game equivalent of an "R" rating. "AO" is the video game equivalent of an "NC-17" rating. (Remember that the old "X" rating was renamed "NC-17".)

Does anyone think, if it were a movie, the sex scene makes GTA worse than "R" movies and therefore GTA deserves to be an "NC-17"?

Granted, I have not played the game. Nonetheless, I have a real hard time believing that GTA even approaches the sexual content of hundreds of "R" movies out there.

Video games have always been subject to much harsher scrutiny than other forms of entertainment (especially movies) have. The video game industry need to grow a backbone and expose the hypocrisy of the politicians.

I have a longer commentary in the other thread.

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S-T, I think you're way off base with that. It's not just the sexual content. It was pretty much as bad as an M game could get before the ESRB found out about the sex scenes. While the sex scenes themselves wouldn't put say, Tetris, into AO territory, it very well could with San Andreas. San Andreas has much more profane language than Vice City or III had, and not to mention that the game features much more anti-establishment situations than previous titles. I'm not blasting the game for that, by the way, as I know it was a result of the location and time period they chose, just saying it more than earned a M rating without the sex. I think the sex scenes were more the straw that broke the camel's back, rather than a sack of bricks that broke the camel's back, with regards to the rating.

And I said this at the 'Tory, but what constitutes as a hack or mod shouldn't be included in the game rating. It's simply not fair to Rockstar. And please don't tell me it's on the disc, many other games include unused content, but don't get rated for it. KOTOR II comes to mind. Some of the unused content involves a lot of dying and premeditated murder, something that would surely affect a game rating, yet it is not rated with regard to that content, because, as the game is sold in stores, that content is unaccessible.

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I understand GTA is a violent game, and I am sure there's a lot of foul language. But if GTA were a movie, would you consider it "NC-17"?

Again, I haven't played the game. I just have a really hard time believing that GTA:SA is somehow worse than hundreds of "R" rated movies out there that have lots of profanity, lots of violence, and much more graphic sex scenes.

It doesn't add up.

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I understand GTA is a violent game, and I am sure there's a lot of foul language. But if GTA were a movie, would you consider it "NC-17"?

Again, I haven't played the game. I just have a really hard time believing that GTA:SA is somehow worse than hundreds of "R" rated movies out there that have lots of profanity, lots of violence, and much more graphic sex scenes.

It doesn't add up.

If Kids was NC-17, then hell yeah, this game in movie form would be rated NC-17. Randomly killing people, fucking, the language... yeah, it'd pretty much get one.

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If Kids was NC-17, then hell yeah, this game in movie form would be rated NC-17. Randomly killing people, fucking, the language... yeah, it'd pretty much get one.

Then should the Friday the 13th films be NC-17? What about Roadhouse?

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If Kids was NC-17, then hell yeah, this game in movie form would be rated NC-17.  Randomly killing people, fucking, the language... yeah, it'd pretty much get one.

Then should the Friday the 13th films be NC-17? What about Roadhouse?

Friday the 13th has nothing on Kids.

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