The Last Outpost Forums ( )Are Video Game Ratings Worth A Damn?


Pete | December 26, 2005 at 11:03 AM

"Sacramento -- A federal judge blocked on Thursday a new California law that would have banned the sale of violent video games to minors.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger had signed the bill by Assemblyman Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, to ban the sale or rental of especially violent video games to children under 18 years old unless there is parental approval. The law was to take effect Jan. 1.

U.S. District Judge Ronald Whyte issued a preliminary injunction preventing the law from going into effect, saying the video game industry, which sued to overturn the law, showed that it had a reasonable chance of winning its case based on the argument that the law violates the First Amendment rights of minors.

He also questioned whether there is evidence that violent video games such as Grand Theft Auto cause violent behavior and need to be regulated by the state."


Pete | December 26, 2005 at 11:08 AM

I'm rather glad that the judge questioned supposed links between computer game violence and real life violence, yet at the same time rather shocked that this apparently means that ratings are worth pretty much the sum total of fuck all.

Fair do's, if I get round to having kids, they won't be allowed any 18 rated games until they're at least... oooh... 15? Seems reasonable.

Unreasonable is the ten years olds I've seen who play GTA Vice City. Okay, so there's the "preparing them for later on in life" argument, but you may as well show them something realistic like CSI rather than showing them unneccessary graphic violence in video game form.

Oh well - this could make for an interesting debate

cyke | December 26, 2005 at 11:31 AM

This'll open a can of worms but my 8 year old nephew plays GTA San Andreas. Loves it too.

Wasn't my choice to let him play it, his useless parents didnt notice the 18 cert so he was playing it and the other GTA games for ages before I found out about it. Caused some controversy for me to say the least.

From playing it with him, i'm fairly happy the swearing and uber-violence goes over his head and is not having an effect. He just wants to drive around, wrecking things and blowing things up. Which is exactly what I would want to do at his age.

I can also remember seeing bits of movies that were inappropriate for me at an early age and they didnt do me any harm. I think.

Am somewhat lost as to how to ween him of GTA:SA, it is lets face it one of the most fantastic games ever, i cant tempt him off with many other games, nothing really compares!

FullAuto | December 26, 2005 at 02:16 PM

I think what a lot of people miss about GTA in general is that the people themselves are quite...cartoonish? That may not be the right word, but they're not what I would call realistic, really. I don't think it has the same impact.

I've let my little brother play on the GTA games, and he hasn't gone on a killing spree yet. I think if you're fucked up, games or other violent media could spur you on to go on a rampage, and if you're not, you won't, no matter how much Manhunt, GTA or Soldier of Fortune you play.

Pete | December 26, 2005 at 02:19 PM

Aye. At the end of the day, it's the parents' responsibility and, sadly, they just don't seem that interested (generalising massively here) so long as the kids are quiet.

FullAuto | December 26, 2005 at 02:29 PM

I mean, some games don't deserve their BBFCs (like Timesplitters: Future Perfect, got a 15 for some reason and only features blood mist upon bullet impact) while Sniper Elite shows bullet wounds and what does it get? A PEGI rating of 16+. Which means sod all.