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ESRB: Only 6% Of 2007 Titles Received Mature Rating

Perhaps parents would be happier about their kids playing video games if they realized just how few titles held the dreaded "M" (Mature) rating label.

According to the most recent ESRB (Entertainment Software Ratings Board) newsletter, it seems that 2007 saw a significant decrease in Mature-rated titles. Furthermore, the ESRB rated 1,563 titles last year (22% more than in 2006), and they claim that 94% of the ratings "assigned were appropriate for ages 13 or younger." That's 8.5 of every 10 titles rated that would be okay for pre-teens. Of course, they are including "T" (Teen)-rated games in those statistics, and that rating includes those between the ages of 13 and 16. It's clever wording to be sure, but it doesn't make it any less true.

Joystiq heard from an ESRB representative regarding this matter, and the rep said the growth of E-Everyone games are due to a "recent influx of casual games for the PC, handheld devices, online arcades, etc." But the bottom line is pretty straightforward- despite all the moaning and groaning, only about 6% of all titles rated in 2007 received the M-Mature rating. So the next time you hear some ignorant politician droning on about how "all" video games are unnecessarily violent, you've got some numerical ammunition.

2/7/2008 Ben Dutka

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Comments (6 posts)

Zapix
Thursday, February 07, 2008 @ 11:58:04 PM
Reply

Sadly, the ratings system fails to do much good, and the politicians get to spew on about violent games. The number of kids age 8-12 playing Halo 3 is absurd, and parents are at fault here, not the ESRB or developers. I will have a hard time forgetting an 8yr old child playing Halo 3 told me and my ex fiancee, he dreams about killing people he goes to school with. WTF IS WRONG WITH PARENTS?!? Meh, bring on the M rated games, bring on prison time for child neglect!

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Gabriel013
Friday, February 08, 2008 @ 1:26:52 AM
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Making game certifications enforcable in the same way as movie certifications would go some way to helping. I'm sure parents still think that the game ratings are intended as a rough guidline, if they even notice them at all.

I personally think there should be more adult orientated games.

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fatchad420
Friday, February 08, 2008 @ 7:43:37 AM
Reply

Parents are too irresponsible when it comes to video games. I don't know how many times i see kids in gamestop or walmart have their parents buy them M rated games. Their just too oblivious, until they see something wrong and blame the video game industry and not themselves.

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K Phantom
Friday, February 08, 2008 @ 9:02:24 AM
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Does it really matter if a ten year old plays Halo or GTA,,, if they were raised right they wouldn't kill aliens or cops...Americans should grow up and stop blaming video games for their failed attempt to raise them right...Besides in my experience only M rated games should be played cuz they are the most fun. Thank u ESRB for tellin me the game is good by giving them M ratings. :D

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Friday, February 08, 2008 @ 11:21:06 AM
Reply

It has been clinically proven, time and time again, that M-rated games and R-rated movies do have adverse effects on those under the age of 18; especially children. This is why I support the ESRB and MPAA, because as someone who holds a Psychology degree, I'm well aware of the negative impact of violent media on impressionable individuals...and that's everyone under the age of 17 and 18.

However, it bugs me that the mainstream media believes that all video games are crazy violent, which is why I liked the stats, here.

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SHADOW [Moderator]
Saturday, February 09, 2008 @ 10:56:25 PM
Reply

@K Phantom: The las two sentences of your comment only go to illustrate the point here. That is the exact mind-set of many a child. M rated games are the only good ones? I beg to differ. Some of the best and most important games in the idustry are rated E-T. Mario, Uncharted, Ratchet and Clank, Final Fantasy, The Sims, and I could list on and on forever. On the other hand some of the industries biggest mistakes of the last year got an M rating. Namely Blacksite and Soldier of Fortune.

Now the problem isn't how many games of each rating were made but how many were sold. I'm sure that Bioshock, Halo 3, Mass Effect, Resistance, and Call of Duty 4 definately made up for more that 6% of game sales and thats just a few m rated games.

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