Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Day One DLC (Part 3 : Regulatory Issues)

Before any action is taken a brief must be made about what the game is going to be about and include. This could cover character’s descriptions and roles as well, meaning that legal and regulatory issues should be taken into consideration before any designing or production starts.

Regulatory Issues

Different rating groups protect different game companies. Some are known as PEGI and others are ESRB. The main purpose of these companies is to ensure the games are correctly rated so that the public know what they’re going to witness during game play and what to buy for children or even adults by looking at the rating. In ESRB their rating system is:

-          EC (Early Childhood)

-          E (Everyone) 6 years+

-          E 10+ (Everyone 10 years+)

-          T (Teenagers) 13 years+

-          M (Mature) 17 years+

-          AO (Adults Only) 18 years +

-          RP (Rating Pending)

-          K-A (Kids To Adults) 6 years+

Having systems similar to these help the public and also guide game makers on what should be included in their game. For example, if the target audience for a certain game was to be kept at an ‘E’ rating, there shouldn’t be any drug use, gambling or sexual content whereas that would appear in ratings such as :M, AO and maybe RP.

PEGI also uses ratings identical to these but they also show images about why the rating is what it is. There are:

-          Fear (7,12,16,18 years)

-          Violence(7,12,16,18 years)

-          Bad Language (12,16,18 years)

-          Sex (12,16,18 years)

-          Drugs(16 and 18 years)

-          Gambling(12,16,18 years)

-          Discrimination(18 years)

-          Online (3,7,12,16,18 years)

Without thinking about these properly and wrongly classifying the age restrictions it could lead to suing not only a company like PEGI but the actual game company as well, sending them bankrupt and maybe banning them from ever making games again.
(Accessed 30/09/12) at 22:10pm for ESRB rating system)
(Accessed 30/09/12 at 22:51pm for PEGI guidelines)
(Accessed 10/10/12 at 7:36 for PEGI Image)
(Accessed 10/10/12 at 7:36 for ESRB Image)

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