Different regions have different standards and different rules regarding age restrictions on games. Some regions enforce them pretty hefty, others are really lenient towards them. Hate them or like/respect them.. they’re there and they’re there to stay.
I myself, being of adult age and free of any responsibility towards other human life, really don’t care much about age restrictions in video games. I hardly ever notice them and when I do, I ignore them. However, a recent news article did get me thinking about them and if they are actually enough.
Violence over violence
Let me elaborate. The talk was about ultra violent games. And I’m not talking Resident Evil, Silent Hill of Grand Theft Auto.. I mean.. violent!
The talk was about games where you engage in a school shooting, or hunt down gay people. Now I’m usually not the most politically correct person around, but the mere thought of games like that existing disgusts me. Creative freedom is one thing, but this is just disturbing.
A whole other topic..
Whether or not these game should have the right to exist or be published and who should police such matters, is of course a whole other argument. One I do not intent to cover in to much depth here. Yeah, I’m all for creative freedom, and freedom of speech. But the fact that you CAN say something, should never dictate on whether you SHOULD.
That being said; I think we as gamers have the power to vote with our wallet and our views. I abhor things like the stuff stated above and choose not to look for them or any news covering it and certainly not buying ‘games’like those.
If you think otherwise, you of course can support them. (and check in with your local therapist maybe)
Age restrictions over 18?
You might already see where I’m going at with this. How should we gate content like this if not just with the age restriction of “18+”? In most modern societies, 18 is the age at which we consider people ‘adult’ and able to choose and vote for themselves. This does however means that anything deemed ‘not suitable for children’ is dumped in a big pile called “18+”
But if any adult is able to make their own choice. What does it matter?
What if you just don’t want to be confronted with specific topics or violence that particularly disgusts you. Or what if you think it’s ok for your 16-year-old to play Call of Duty or Grand Theft Auto, but think their mind is juuust a little bit to fragile for genocide or school shootings?
Reasons enough to make that kind of distinctions, one would say.
Drawing a line..
With thoughts like this, I am happy to not have much to actually dictate on the matter. Bigger men and women have better thoughts on age restrictions in video games, and if they deem it necessary, they are in a position to make a difference.
That being said though, I do like pondering about these things. Just.. food for thought..
I would love to hear your opinion on the matter. Either in the comments below or on the Tweet dedicated to promote this article. ..and not in a way to push people to interact.. I really, genuinely care to hear your thoughts and opinions on this. (and any and all other gaming related topics.