Tag Archives: esrb

Halo 5: Guardians Earns a T Rating

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The fifth numbered entry in the Halo franchise has been rated “T for Teen” by the ESRB, Gamesradar discovered today. All previous Halo titles — with the exception of Halo Wars, Spartan Assault and Spartan Strike, have been rated “M for Mature”.

The content descriptors reveal the game will feature blood, mild language, violence. It appears the violence in Halo 5 has been toned compared to its predecessors; its official rating summary mentions occasional blood-splatter effects, while Halo 4‘s lists “Large blood-splatter effects” and describes a gory scene. You can read the full rating summary for more detail.

Halo 5 Rating Summary:

This is a first-person shooter in which players assume the role of a super soldier (Locke) searching for a missing character. Players use pistols, machine guns, grenade launchers, and futuristic weapons to kill alien and human enemies in frenetic combat. Battles are highlighted by realistic gunfire, explosions, and occasional blood-splatter effects. Characters can also use “assassinations” to kill characters by snapping their necks, or by stabbing them with bladed weapons. The word “a*s” appears in the dialogue, as well as occasional taunts/insults (e.g., “I have copulated…with your genetic progenitors!”; ‘Your father was a filthy colo and your mother was a hole in the wall!’)

Halo 5: Guardians launches on October 27, 2015, exclusively for Xbox One.

 

Source: Gamesradar via ESRB.

A Majority of Parents Are Actually Aware of ESRB Rating System Based on New Report

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Today saw the release of a very intriguing statistics report regarding the video game industry, by The Entertainment Software Association. The ESA is a Washington D.C. based group that represents the industry’s interest.

Some of the more interesting bit of info in its annual “Essential Facts” are that 85% of Parents are actually aware that ESRB Rating system exist and that 56% of them say that video games are a positive part of their child’s life. You can read the full 2014 PDF report here, or check out some the more interesting findings.

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Who Is Playing?:

  • 59 percent of Americans play games.
  • 181.3 million Americans play games.
  • Average gamer age is 31.
  • 51 percent of Americans own a dedicated game console, and those that do own an average of two.
  • 52 percent of U.S. gamers are male, and 48 percent are female.
  • Women aged 18 or over make up a much larger percentage of the gamer population (36 percent) than boys 18 or younger (17 percent).
  • The average number of years gamers have been playing video games is 14.

Who Is Buying?:

  • Average age of the most frequent game purchaser is 35.
  • Of the most frequent game purchasers, 50 percent are male and 50 percent are female.
  • 44 percent of gamers said video games give them the most value for their money, compared to DVDs, music, or going out to the movies.

At Play:

  • 88 percent of parents whose children play games believe the ESRB rating system is either very or somewhat helpful in choosing games for their children.
  • 85 percent of parents are aware of the ESRB system.
  • 87 percent of parents believe that the parental controls available in video game consoles are useful. In addition, parents impose time usage limits on video games more than any other form of entertainment. 83 percent for games, 80 percent of Internet usage, 76 percent TV viewing, and 70 percent movie viewing.
  • Of the games rated by the ESRB in 2013, 46 percent were rated E, 19 percent were rated E10+, 23 percent were rated T, and 12 percent were rated M.
  • 91 percent of parents whose children play video games are present when games are purchased or rented.
  • 82 percent of children ask for their parents’ permission before purchasing or renting a game.
  • 95 percent of parents say they pay attention to the content of the games their children play.
  • 56 percent of parents say video games are a positive part of their child’s life.

Bottom Line:

  • The “action” category was the best-selling console video game genre in 2013, making up 31.9 percent of all games sold last year. The next closest category was the “shooter” category at 20 percent.
  • For PC, strategy games took the lion’s share, with 38.4 percent of all sales. The next closest category was “casual” at 28.3 percent.
  • The best-selling console game of 2013 was Grand Theft Auto V, followed by Call of Duty: Ghosts.
  • On PC, StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm was the best-seller, followed by SimCity.
  • In all, gamers spent $21.53 billion on all video game content in 2013.

More than 2,200 “nationally representative” households data was gathered by research firm Ipsos MediaCT for this report.

So what do you guys think, any of these findings surprised you? I was personally surprised and happy about the how parents knowing of the ESRB’s existence, seeing as I used to work in a retail store and sold many video games to those that were oblivious. Of course I didn’t meet a majority of these parents but still it was hard not to think that way.

ESRB Rates Ratchet & Clank: Into The Nexus For PlayStation Vita

ratchet clank nexus playstation vita

The North American ESRB Rating system has reportedly revealed that Ratchet & Clank: Into The Nexus will be released on Sony’s next-generation gaming handheld PlayStation Vita at some point in the potentially near future. These ratings are sometimes the result of pre-emptive testing, errors, or fraudulent registrations in the ratings and trademark systems used by the video game industry.

Insomniac Games, the development studio behind the series, is also known for the Resistance series on PS3 in addition to their current unreleased project; Sunset Overdrive for Xbox ONE. While their relationship with Sony might not be at its highest peak at this time, it would appear there’s no reason Insomniac couldn’t develop – or assist in commissioning the development of – a PS Vita version to Into The Nexus for publisher Sony Computer Entertainment.

At this time there is no denial that this is a real PlayStation Vita version of the newest PS3 exclusive Ratchet & Clank console game that released in 2012. It certainly seems like the response from fans is that they’d be interested in buying a handheld version of the PS3 title, Insomniac and Sony may provide an update to this – so be sure to keep an eye out if you’re on the Vita and looking to play the latest installment to one of the best 3D Platformer franchises around.

Check out the Launch Trailer for the PS3 version presented below in high definition:

[Some Info Sourced:NEOGaf via IGN]

Blood Knights Trailer + Release Date Revealed – XBLA (ESRB) [HD]

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Blood Knights is a new game being published by Kalypso Media USA and will be released on Xbox 360’s XBLA market for $14.99, £11.99, and €14.90 respectively when it makes its release November 1, 2013.

Excerpt from Official Press Release:

“Combine your vampiric skills with the sharp edge of your blade in this medieval vampire hack’n’slay. Battle through hordes of monsters to restore your honor after you, a legendary and feared vampire hunter, have been turned into a vampire yourself!

Deck13 (Venetica, Jack Keane) brings you an action-packed RPG, where you can play solo or co-op: Switch between the close-combat warrior and the crossbow wielding vampiress at any time while in singleplayer; or play co-op with a friend, joining your forces to defeat the onslaught of the evil hordes. Strike down your enemies using devastating close-combat and ranged attacks or whirl your enemies around and suck their blood using your vampiric abilities.

Features:
– Action packed combat, close or ranged, paired with RPG elements
– Switch between two playable characters with vastly different skills on the fly
– Whirl your enemies around and suck their blood using your vampiric abilities
– Play single player or co-op with a friend, joining your forces
– Interact with the environment using your attract and repel skills
– Multiple choice dialogues will affect how the world perceives the player
– Vampire story narrated with atmospheric cut-scenes
– 160 available weapons and 40 different armour elements”

Nintendo / Activision Announce Skylanders SWAP Force Wii U Bundle

WiiU SKYLANDERS bundle

Nintendo and Activision have announced a joint venture on the Skylanders SWAP Force Wii U Bundle. The white Nintendo Wii U Basic console (8GB) comes with Skylanders SWAP Force game, the Nintendo Land game, three Skylanders figures (Ninja ZStealth Elf, Blast-Zone, and “exclusive color shift” Washbuckler), collectible poster, trading cards, and stickers.

The new Skylanders SWAP Force title is developed by Vicarious Visions, Inc. and published by Activision featuring two player simultaneous co-op for the Action, Adventure genres while being rated E for Everyone 10 years old and up. The total cost for the entire bundle which also comes with 1 Wii U GamePad (tablet-style controller) runes for $299.99 when it releases November 15, 2013. Check out the High Definition trailer for Skylanders SWAP Force below.

*UPDATE: Confirmed* Rumor – Injustice: Gods Among Us Could Hit PlayStation Vita Soon

Injustice Vita

Update: This rumor has been confirmed today by Warner Bros. with further info on PS Vita + PS4 Versions. Below sits the unedited, original rumor.

Injustice: Gods Among Us has been rated by the German equivalent of the ESRB classification system for the PlayStation Vita and this in addition to the PlayStation Vita version of Injustice: Gods Among Us Game of the Year Edition being spotted recently on Amazon (before being de-listed) has led many to believe that Warner Bros. Interactive and NetherRealm Studios will likely bring the fighter to Sony’s handheld platform soon. It’s just a matter of time now until the project is announced, but just in case keep your fingers crossed handheld fighting game fans.

Killer Is Dead + Deadly Premonition Released For Xbox 360 Games On Demand

Killer Is Dead

XSEED Games and Marvelous USA have announced that Killer Is Dead is now available on the digital marketplace Games On Demand for Xbox 360 at the price of $49.99 as well as Deadly Premonition becoming available on Games On Demand for $19.99. You can catch both of these M for Mature titles in the Xbox Games Store starting today. Killer Is Dead was developed by SUDA51 and Grasshopper Manufacture while Deadly Premonition was created by Access Games and Marvelous AQL.

The Last of Us Multiplayer Gets Censored Outside USA, But So Does Every Game…

The Last of Us Survivors Multiplayer Gore

Many gamers may not realize this but all video games are censored in this way. Every video game that has ever been released since the implementation of the ESRB, PEGI, and similar ratings boards must go through strict approval processes, even in the United States where sex is the main victim of censorship which indicates US ratings boards as seeing violence in games as less problematic. While this is nothing new, some gamers who live abroad would have liked to know ahead of time about exactly what was censored so they could make an informed decision about whether or not to pay extra for an imported copy of TLOU. Here below reads the quote:

“The gore and violence ratings are subject to local regulatory boards in various countries, so the game must be slightly changed in order to accommodate those choices,” said a Naughty Dog Community Manager in regards to what players have been discovering is a censorship issue with The Last of Us on PlayStation 3.

“Best of PlayStation Network Vol. 1” Coming to PS4, Not PS3

Sony has had one of their new titles (most likely a digital distribution bundle) outed via the ESRB which rates games based on their violent/sexual content, or lack of thereof. According to the ESRB’s website: “Best of PlayStation Network Vol. 1” will contain Fat Princess, Tokyo Jungle, Sound Shapes, and When Vikings Attack but it is not yet known which platform Sony plans to release the bundle for.

Many will quickly jump to the conclusion that this “Best of PlayStation Network Vol. 1” is a digital bundle planned for the PlayStation 3 console. However, given what we know about the lack of backwards support for PSN purchases with the incoming PlayStation 4 system, could this actually be one of the first ESRB ratings for a PlayStation 4 content pack?

Typically, if games that are already rated by the ESRB are bundled into a sale item together on the PlayStation Network or other digital distribution stores, a new ESRB rating would not be required. This lends evidence to the fact that the “Best of PlayStation Network Vol. 1” is actually not a PS3 sale bundle for PSN but indeed a new title entry for the PS4 instead.

Only time will tell, however we expect Sony to make an announcement about this before/during E3 2013.

Australia Finally Gets R18+ Rating

Australian gamers have long since battled for this day to come and it is finally here. Today the Australian government announced the R18+ rating will be approved for the video game industry. For those that don’t know, the R18+ rating is the equivalent to an M rated game in America. This is regarded as a game for adults, and when purchased usually a form of ID is presented or a parent/guardian’s consent is requested otherwise the purchase is turned down to minors.

In Australia they haven’t had such a rating and instead games have been modified to culturally match a younger crowd. If this type of dumbing down of violence, blood, gore, etc. wasn’t effective enough to classify the game in the 15+ rating, the game would likely be banned from release.

Now that Australia has the R18+ rating system for available for game publishers to utilize, we should see a little less censoring of games and a little more parental awareness about the various different types of games and appropriate age groups.

“The amendments to the Classification Act 1995 and Broadcasting Services Act 1992 are expected to come into effect by January of next year.

The average age of gamers is 32 with women making up 47 per cent of Australian gamers.

The demand for an R18+ video game rating has been overwhelming.

The Attorney-General’s department received 58, 437 submissions in response to a discussion paper released last year, 98 per cent of which supported the introduction of an R 18 category.”

[News.Com.Au]