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Old 08-29-2007, 03:28 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Hemalin View Post
I'm not in the least bit curious. Why should the ESRB be the ones to release that kind of information? If the content in question involves important plot points, do you really think the devs want the ESRB releasing that kind of info?
They released an explanation of the AO rating, I believe.
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Old 08-29-2007, 03:36 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by johnperkins21 View Post
They both should. How can you judge the validity of the ratings if you have no way of knowing what their criteria are? If they're anything remotely like the MPAA they definitely can not be trusted. It seems like they are trying to be exactly like the MPAA.
That is just a bad idea. If you want to judge the rating system or the product, then look at the released products, not something that is a work in progress. If the ESRB started talking about the content that caused it to lose their rating, itíd just be misunderstood and often be considered as content in the game. In short, if I was shooting for a particular rating, and failed it for whatever reason, Iíd be pretty ticked off if the ratings board started promoting the existence of undesired content in my game that never makes it into the release product. Basically, youíre saying that you want to get complete ratings on unreleased products, I think itís enough work to get them on released products, I donít see the logic behind this.

I mean, if you were investigating corruption or something, disclosing this evidence to investigators would make sense, but to just release information prior to completion of the ratings process by default is a bad move.
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Do they not realize that the sudden lower rating and their media blackout on the reasoning throws incredible doubts towards their validity as a ratings board?
Only to those who have a great propensity for doubt. I mean, why would you be suspicious of a ratings change based on changes in a product, isnít that what theyíre supposed to do? Again, who cares how many changes the product went through or what ratings it had in the process, when itís released and the ratings arenít consistent, then bitch about it.
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Old 08-29-2007, 03:46 PM   #23
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Holy god. A Senator that makes sense in regards to video game decisions? I'll be damned.
Careful, he was behind a California video game bill.
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Old 08-29-2007, 03:55 PM   #24
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Careful, he was behind a California video game bill.
I noticed this after this post, and regretted saying that. You win.
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Old 08-29-2007, 03:56 PM   #25
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The ESRB is WAY more transparent than the MPAA. I don't see Yee bitching about Hostel 2 getting an R instead of an NC-17. Whay doesn't he demand a step by step explanation of that rating? Because it gets less headlines in the press?

I guess he just hates video games. Jackass.
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Old 08-29-2007, 03:59 PM   #26
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P.s.- let's just pray that Rockstar actually took out the content in question. The last thing the industry needs is another hot coffee incident.
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Old 08-29-2007, 04:04 PM   #27
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i think we deserve to know what constitutes an "AO" and "M" game. the difference between AO Manhunt and M Manhunt should make it clear to everyone.

Rockstar just has to release the "pre" AO version of their game for the PC so everyone can see the difference.

If someone was judging things FOR ME, I think i'd like to know what criteria they were using to make those judgements.
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Old 08-29-2007, 04:31 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by RMan View Post
That is just a bad idea. If you want to judge the rating system or the product, then look at the released products, not something that is a work in progress. If the ESRB started talking about the content that caused it to lose their rating, itíd just be misunderstood and often be considered as content in the game. In short, if I was shooting for a particular rating, and failed it for whatever reason, Iíd be pretty ticked off if the ratings board started promoting the existence of undesired content in my game that never makes it into the release product. Basically, youíre saying that you want to get complete ratings on unreleased products, I think itís enough work to get them on released products, I donít see the logic behind this.

I mean, if you were investigating corruption or something, disclosing this evidence to investigators would make sense, but to just release information prior to completion of the ratings process by default is a bad move.
You're not making any sense. If I'm some kid's mom I want to know what the difference is between a T and an M. What do they consider to be intense violence as opposed to violence? Is it similar to where I would draw the line? How can I go based on past games if I never play them? I can only afford 3 games a year for my kid, how do you expect me to figure out what a rating means based on past content?

They need to explicitly say what it is they are looking for that constitutes a certain rating. If I say shit 10 times and have 3 decapitations it's a T, but if I say fuck twice and have no decapitations but I can kill cops does that make it an M? They use a checklist to help determine the rating, put it on the website and let me judge for myself.

What if I'm more conservative than the ratings board and I think a T game should have gotten an M? I'm not going to buy it for my kid, play through it and then decide whether the kid can play it. I would look on a website and see their checklist though. Why are they hiding this information? There is no logical reason that they need to hide it.

And saying that revealing the information would attribute things to the game that may not be in there is ludicrous. That's what it does now by not telling us the criteria. Just explain why the game got the rating. It should be incredibly easy to do.
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Old 08-29-2007, 04:55 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Hemalin View Post
I'm not in the least bit curious. Why should the ESRB be the ones to release that kind of information? If the content in question involves important plot points, do you really think the devs want the ESRB releasing that kind of info?
Only if they preface the press-realease with

*****************SPOILERS SPOILER SPOILERS******************

Really, transparency in a system like the esrb is required to make sure they are doing their job.
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Old 08-29-2007, 04:55 PM   #30
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john perkins speaks the TRUTH!
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Old 08-29-2007, 04:57 PM   #31
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1) Until a game has been released, it isn't a public issue and if any information is to be released about said game, it should the decision of the developer. Not a group of people who reviewed it under the understanding that their process would be confidential.

2) When have the ESRB's ratings been questioned? As far as I know, the whole ESRB controversy started with the Hot Coffee scandal, and that wasn't questioning the ESRB's decisions. The controversy was because content available only through a modded version of the game wasn't possible for them to review. It was a question of punishment for companies that have inactive and unreviewable data in their games.

Some groups tried to make it into a question about the ESRB's review process, but that really wasn't the issue.

3)
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Parents simply can not trust an entity that is unwilling to disclose or give any meaningful rationale at how they come to their decisions.
How would any review process truly be tested? The end results. When you find a game that got an inappropriate rating for fully disclosed and reviewable content, then come back and bitch about it. Until then, STFU.

And why would parents care about a game that's rated M? It's not for kids. End of story.
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:02 PM   #32
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you're putting a lot of faith/trust into a committee that is defining what is acceptable and not acceptable in today's society.
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:07 PM   #33
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They both should. How can you judge the validity of the ratings if you have no way of knowing what their criteria are? If they're anything remotely like the MPAA they definitely can not be trusted. It seems like they are trying to be exactly like the MPAA.
Absofuckinglutely. BOTH the MPAA and the ESRB should be on spot.
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:23 PM   #34
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Both Sony and Nintendo have said "No" to AO games.
What?!? How in the hell am I going to play a good tentacle-rape simulation if the 2 Japanese console makers won't allow AO games?
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:26 PM   #35
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What?!? How in the hell am I going to play a good tentacle-rape simulation if the 2 Japanese console makers won't allow AO games?
Use your PC.
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:35 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by johnperkins21 View Post
You're not making any sense. If I'm some kid's mom I want to know what the difference is between a T and an M. What do they consider to be intense violence as opposed to violence? Is it similar to where I would draw the line? How can I go based on past games if I never play them? I can only afford 3 games a year for my kid, how do you expect me to figure out what a rating means based on past content?
You can go here and look at the ESRBís ratings of past games (http://www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_guide.jsp). What youíre demanding is nothing of the sort, you want to evaluate the ESRB based on content you never see, and what, a paraphrasing from the developer or the ESRB on how Ďbadí it was and why the rating was deserved. This is just foolish, the information is there, in FAR more useful ways than you suggest, you just, for whatever reason, want what you donít have. Youíre honestly arguing that a kidís mom is going to evaluate the ESRB with a prerelease game description? Crazy talk.
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They need to explicitly say what it is they are looking for that constitutes a certain rating.
Hehe, youíd have an ESRB ratings system far more complicated than our legal system. Thereís no way to do what you propose, not in our world, but again, the ESRB does a fine job of laying out the basics of their system and it seems the vast majority of developers outside of Rockstarís offices seem to get it. As far as parents understanding the ESRBís ratings, that information is well supplied.
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I would look on a website and see their checklist though. Why are they hiding this information? There is no logical reason that they need to hide it.
I donít see them hiding anything, just being unable to break games down into formulas or checklists because they occupy the same world I live in. Tell you what, you take 5 games, break them down into a checklist of every type of content that someone can find offensive, then come back and tell me it was just simple and everyone agrees with it. What, you think parents are looking for stats like FUs per minute, like they have a 1.7 FUPM limit? They just want to know how close their personal ratings match up to the ESRBs, and that information is EASILY available for RELEASED products. I got to the ESRBs site by hitting the first google link for ĎESRB rating criteriaí, what, precisely, do you think theyíre trying to hide?
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That's what it does now by not telling us the criteria. Just explain why the game got the rating. It should be incredibly easy to do.
I honestly donít know how to explain to you the difference between a release game and a work in progress, itís so simple and obvious I just canít fathom how to get the point across to you. Why not demand that websites supply reviews for games before theyíre released, so you can also evaluate the quality of the games you canít buy and will never see. Silly.
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:35 PM   #37
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I won't read too much into this, but curious as I am, I don't care why ESRB isn't talking.

I'll happily wait until it comes from Rockstar themselves as to what was removed.
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:48 PM   #38
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I won't read too much into this, but curious as I am, I don't care why ESRB isn't talking.

I'll happily wait until it comes from Rockstar themselves as to what was removed.
I'll read too much into it. Yee has previously been shot down from passing anti-video game laws. The ESRB is deemed adequate so the government doesn't need to get involved. Yee believes that if he can get people to believe the the ESRB is inadequate, he can have the government get involved in regulating video games.
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Old 08-29-2007, 07:04 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by theCurse View Post
Films are edited and re-submitted to the MPAA for lower ratings all the time. The MPAA does not disclose their reasons. Why should the ESRB?
I'll echo this. The MPAA has been veiled in secrecy for years (unless you watched "This Film Is Not Yet Rated"). If something like this actually causes the ESRB to reveal things, I think the focus should be turned in the direction of the MPAA, as well.
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Old 08-29-2007, 07:45 PM   #40
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Wow.

I can't believe that some people are actually getting this upset about this issue. I thought it was ridiculous when I first heard about Yee's accusations.

Ok, let's look at this. The ESRB has never hidden much of anything in the past. They've never given a reason for suspicion. They've never really done anything wrong to my knowledge(correct me if I'm wrong, I very well may be).

The only reason that they're being thrown into suspicion now is because they're not releasing what is obviously confidential material. And because Yee is making a scene.

I don't know about you, but whenever I've read the rating on a videogame box, and played that game, it was usually a pretty accurate predictor of what was in the game. The ESRB's system is simple, and it works. There's no reason that this case would be any different.

The only reason this situation even holds merit is because the rating went from an AO to an M rating. If it was a game going from a T rating to an E rating, do you think anyone would care? Probably not. And because no one would care then, no one should be caring now. If Manhunt 2 comes out and it should have obviously been rated AO, or it's revealed that Rockstar didn't actually change anything (which I think that would be unlikely and entirely too risky for Rockstar; they don't want another Hot Coffee) then we might have a situation on our hands. Until then, this whole thing reeks of innocent until proven guilty, and there's very little proof that there's any guilt here.
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