Originally Posted by Darvin
I don't own CoH, as it happens, so I didn't consider that one in my tally. I'm surprised it got M-rated, however. Again, it speaks to the weakness of the current rating system. It only weakens the M-rating if you place a game with excessive swearing alongside one where the player character is a psychotic mass murderer (not thinking of any game in particular, but I'm sure it exists).
I stopped paying attention to ratings long ago, because I find them to quite arbitrary in many cases. However, I can understand from a developer's perspective the incentive to keep in the T-rated category with a game like this. I don't think it should be hard to do.
*** DISCLAIMER *** Please note that the below commentary is based on the views of the poster and doesn't necessarily reflect the views of Reverie World Studios INC.
Had to put the disclaimer on there, cause I don't want us getting a bad rap, but this is how I personally feel. Ratings are mainly there for concerned parents of younger gamers. I myself don't really pay attention to them, however there are a lot of politicians that are trying to capitalize on the so called "failings" of the ESRB.
Things like the stripper scene in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas that get missed are not a fault of the ESRB, but that of the developer. The way a game gets rated is different from movies, which is what they compare them to. A movie takes around 2 hours to watch, and then a rating can be given on that film by either an individual or a panel, depending on what body is doing the rating.
With videogames that isn't a valid way to rate them, this is due to the fact that games are a lot longer, take any of the Final Fantasy games for example, you would have to play the entire game, which around 40 hours, and then get all the extra content to make sure there is nothing provactative, so we'll call this 60 hours. That is just a long singleplayer game, what about MMO's like Warcraft, is the reviewer or review team going to have to get the level 70 of every class in every race, just to see if there is anything Blizzard is hiding, or in Oblivion, it would take forever to complete every bit of that game.
When inquiring about getting DoF reviewed, I learned a little bit of their process, this however was last year, so I don't know if they have changed anything since. Back then, this is the way the ESRB rated a game. A video the developer creates, based on the most violent or lewd scenes in the game is sent to the ESRB. The reviewer then makes a rating based on that, as well as paperwork also given by the developer.
Anything they do not show the ESRB is the developers concern as they are fined a large amount for any offensive material they do not submit.
The US government is looking to create their own rating system and remove the ESRB. This will not be good for gaming in my opinion, because they either wont allow, or will make titles like Grand Theft Auto or Manhunt, Adult Only, and then systems wont support them, and you wont see such creative expression in games as developers wont be able make a living doing anything the rating system wont allow.