Saturday, January 6th 2007

German ratings board refuses to rate Crackdown, sales to minors illegal

The German ratings board has refused to issue a rating for "Crackdown", the Xbox360 game that will come with a free Halo 3 beta invitation. Crackdown was probably banned in Germany for being too violent. A game without a rating in Germany isn't "illegal", however it cannot be sold to a minor, advertised, or displayed in a public store. All sales of the game have to be person-to-person. Two other Xbos360 games that have been deemed unrated in Germany are Gears of War and Dead Rising.

Source: Joystiq
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42 Comments on German ratings board refuses to rate Crackdown, sales to minors illegal

#1
EviLZeD
wow i never knew germanys laws were that strict damn in a way it could be a good thing
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#2
HookeyStreet
Eat, sleep, game!
Ive been waiting for this, good job I live in good ol' blighty ;)
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#3
Casheti
THERE IS NO SPEED LIMIT IN GERMANY. w00t!
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#4
bornfree
Good to see at least someone recognizes the influence on kids of violent games. In America good judgment never stands in the way of the almighty dollar...
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#5
Darksaber
W1zzard's Sidekick
Well the interesting thing is, that germans do not think they can still buy these games in their own country and drive down to Austria to buy games like Death Rising, Condemed, Gears of War...

oh yea...Condemned is another game not sold normaly in Germany..not just death rising and GoW.
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#7
prime95
by: bornfree
Good to see at least someone recognizes the influence on kids of violent games. In America good judgment never stands in the way of the almighty dollar...
It should be up to the parents to make sure their kids aren't playing these games, and it should be up to the retailer to make sure they CARD for the purchase of games teen and up IMO. That 'influence' you talk about is a correlation, not a cause and affect. It just so happens kids with violent tendencies in the first place might happen to enjoy games like GTA, Dead Rising, etc. Also, good judgment shouldn't be left up to a small group of people. Every child is different, which is why the judgment should be left up to PARENTS, and the responsibility of making sure these games aren't sold to kids should be the duty of RETAILERS.
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#8
overcast
by: bornfree
Good to see at least someone recognizes the influence on kids of violent games. In America good judgment never stands in the way of the almighty dollar...
You want to talk about good judgement with Germany?
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#9
xylomn
by: prime95
It should be up to the parents to make sure their kids aren't playing these games, and it should be up to the retailer to make sure they CARD for the purchase of games teen and up IMO. That 'influence' you talk about is a correlation, not a cause and affect. It just so happens kids with violent tendencies in the first place might happen to enjoy games like GTA, Dead Rising, etc. Also, good judgment shouldn't be left up to a small group of people. Every child is different, which is why the judgment should be left up to PARENTS, and the responsibility of making sure these games aren't sold to kids should be the duty of RETAILERS.
I agree, shifting the blame to say that violent video games are the cause of peoples violence aint right.... I and many other I know enjoy violent games, but we are not violent people... but the fact that someone who might already be violent would also enjoy a violent game doesn't mke the game in itself bad... also if the parents have been so bad that they didnt bring up their children with the strength in personality to be able to realise that a game is just a game and that actually shooting someone like in a game is wrong well they deserve all they get, parents fault not the games, anyways there is much worse stuff on the breakfast news lol
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#10
peach1971
It should be up to the parents to make sure their kids aren't playing these games
Okay, but IMO their exercise is more about to feed them with more social competence.
That´s what it´s all about, social competence.
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#11
prime95
Well in Germany beer and alcohol seem like a big part of your culture, so to be socially competent, are you telling me parents should teach their children how to drink?

I'm willing to bet you'd say no... parents should teach their children to be responsible and not drink until it is legal. Although this would make them not socially competent? Because drinking is a part of society, and for parents to tell their children not to drink would be taking away from their knowledge of how to be 'socially competent'!?!

Ok, now back to videogames...
Okay, but IMO their exercise is more about to feed them with more social competence.
That´s what it´s all about.
So what your telling me is that parents shouldn't have to teach their kids that killing is bad, video games are not real, and never to act out or do what they see and hear in video games. Instead it is up to them to make their children socially competent. In reality it is up to a committee of people who probably have never played a video game in their life, to decide whether a game is 'suitable' or not for your entire country. You make it seem as if all video games hold some sort of educational value.... as if you learn from them?!

Now at least in America, I know that killing is bad, and is definitely not considered part of being socially competent. We are taught to talk out our problems rather than act in violent anger (let's not get into premier Bush's way of thinking). In Germany, since it is not the responsibility of the parent to teach right from wrong(according to you), and instead tell their children how to interact with people (even though learning how to interact with people requires ... interacting with people - social competence) it should be socially acceptable for a kid to shoot another person. Cause a parent's only job is to make sure their children know how to interact with people. Since it wasn't a parent's responsibility to make sure their kid knows that killing is wrong, and what they see in video games is not right, does that now make murder socially acceptable? Or in this case, does it make murder the fault of video game makers and not parents and retailers?

Not to mention the fact that it is blatant censorship...
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#12
peach1971
Yes, it´s blatant censorship, agree.

What I meant to say (and I should have used more words for that but had to hurry for the supermarket) by pointing at social competence is, that in cases where violent outrages are somehow linkable to massive FPS playing, social competence has been absent like i.e. parents not looking after their kids by more than "hey, that´s a bad game, stop playing". etc.
"Don´t do this, don´t do that" etc.

It´s a matter of positive vs. negative manifestation.
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#13
zekrahminator
McLovin
by: Darksaber


oh yea...Condemned is another game not sold normaly in Germany..not just death rising and GoW.
Thanks for the tip, news fixed so it didn't look like Germany had only banned two games :).
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#14
prime95
by: peach1971
Yes, it´s blatant censorship, agree.

What I meant to say (and I should have used more words for that but had to hurry for the supermarket) by pointing at social competence is, that in cases where violent outrages are somehow linkable to massive FPS playing, social competence has been absent like i.e. parents not looking after their kids by more than "hey, that´s a bad game, stop playing". etc.
"Don´t do this, don´t do that" etc.

It´s a matter of positive vs. negative manifestation.
After all you've said, it seems that we both agree, and are talking like two sides of the same coin... the last thing I guess I want to ask then is do you think it is right to censor these games, and take control away from consumers and give it to a select few who deem what is right and wrong?
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#15
lemonadesoda
Yes. It is right to remove certain things from easy access, whether this is an outright ban, or limited age restriction. e.g. certain pharmaceutical products, recreation drugs, poisonous and toxic chemicals, guns, WMD, pr0n, etc.

Last night I saw a film called Crank. Pure gratuitous violence (human body chopping) and childish (only funny for students) sex scenes. Absolutely crap film pandering to this "new" gore-noir genre of film. I actually think this film is pretty close to the kind of thing that should be banned. But it has been a box-office success! To enjoy this film you have to be a serious American-Psycho (which is a much better film BTW!). What was really unpleasant about the movie, is that it is supposed to be action/comedy. So we are supposed to laugh at these people getting their limbs hacked off with knives etc.

I think that there will be some serious social implications in the future as a result of these types of films/games. Can you really call this entertainment, or a macabre pandering to our sick curiousities and a dark side of shadenfreude? If you think this is OK, then I think your values not going uphill, but downhill. And I wouldn't want you setting the example of social behaviour to the children of the future.
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#16
peach1971
do you think it is right to censor these games, and take control away from consumers and give it to a select few who deem what is right and wrong?
In some cases, yes.
I just ran through some screenshots of Crackdown... doesn´t look SO violent to me.
But I remember "Punsiher":



That´s where it ends for me.
Yes, go and censor games like this.

(Funny, my judgement depends on the matter whether it comes to close body contact or not, when brutal scences are somehow `unusual`... just like the brain sorts things out and gives a message to the mind which starts realizing what just happens there - becaue it´s unusual vs. because it´s immoral? ;))
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#17
zekrahminator
McLovin
In my opinion, we could fix these issues by redoing the rating system. My idea for a rating system...
  • Stage 1 game- 3 and up can play, age checked by ID, nothing offensive or perverted.
  • Stage 2 game- 5 and up can play, age checked by ID, slightly dirty humor (potty jokes), basic violence (spongebob/madagascar type "beat up the bad guys" things).
  • Stage 3 game- 9 and up can play, age checked by ID, some swear words, guns, same level dirty humor, violence (you can shoot things)
  • Stage 4 game- 12 and up can play, age checked by ID, swear words, guns, perverted jokes, enemies may be humanoid. Plot may be creepy.
  • Stage 5 game- 16 and up can play, age checked by drivers permit/license. Basically, Doom 3-esque games :p
Just how I would do it, but I'm not the ESRB.
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#18
Namslas90
Food for thought, if todays games are "too Violent", what are future game makers going to come up with. It can't be good!!:toast:
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#19
PVTCaboose1337
Graphical Hacker
by: zekrahminator
In my opinion, we could fix these issues by redoing the rating system. My idea for a rating system...
  • Stage 1 game- 3 and up can play, age checked by ID, nothing offensive or perverted.
  • Stage 2 game- 5 and up can play, age checked by ID, slightly dirty humor (potty jokes), basic violence (spongebob/madagascar type "beat up the bad guys" things).
  • Stage 3 game- 9 and up can play, age checked by ID, some swear words, guns, same level dirty humor, violence (you can shoot things)
  • Stage 4 game- 12 and up can play, age checked by ID, swear words, guns, perverted jokes, enemies may be humanoid. Plot may be creepy.
  • Stage 5 game- 16 and up can play, age checked by drivers permit/license. Basically, Doom 3-esque games :p
Just how I would do it, but I'm not the ESRB.
That sounds like a good idea.
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#20
Lazzer408
by: bornfree
Good to see at least someone recognizes the influence on kids of violent games. In America good judgment never stands in the way of the almighty dollar...
Many countried are better then america in many ways.
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#21
Lazzer408
Including punctuation and grammar. sorry for the typo. :laugh:
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#22
WarEagleAU
Bird of Prey
WOW. Thats all I can say about that screen shot.
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#23
Lazzer408
I hope that WOW is at the situation and not the graphics.
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#24
ATIonion
i can't help but think: THIS IS ALL FAKE....

we have tv shows that are much worse...and those use real people....this is fake...not real people, just cgi people...i can see the difference...

i think that it is upto the parents to control their children....sure you can't watch them all the time, but you have to instill values in your children...

i grew up on tom and jerry cartoons....i didn't place dynamite in a kettle to blow up someone and make them look like a black man from the 30's......i knew better....nor have i ever played Mortal Combat and tried to do a "Finish Him" move on someone and rip their spine out...i knew it was only a game or only a tv show...
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#25
Lazzer408
It's society not games ruining kids. When I was young my Mom stayed at home and my dad worked. When he got home we all went out to dinner together then to a movie. Having a kid myself I found both of us (my wife and I) needed to work to pay the bills and the baby sitter wound up being a heroine addict. Lack of parenting leads to currupt youth. Parents not spending time with there kids ruins them. The xbox becomes the babysitter. How many divorced families are out there now. How many dads beaten to the ground or in jail because there wife cheated on them but they still have to pay child support? Now the fatherless child rebels against society for putting his father in jail and it's the game's fault? I don't think so Tim.
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