Grand Theft Auto San Andreas: Part 2

Well it looks like the GTA has been blown out of all proportion. I see that the kids that are being protected from this polygon sex are the seventeen year olds as (quoting Penny Arcade):

The ESRB is suggesting that they may change the rating of the game to Adults Only, a category that by their own definition should see a great deal more use in a retail environment. This is great. Look at the descriptions for these.

MATURE Titles rated M (Mature) have content that may be suitable for persons ages 17 and older. Titles in this category may contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content, and/or strong language.

Or, as the rest of our culture calls it, "Rated R." Check out AO.

ADULTS ONLY Titles rated AO (Adults Only) have content that should only be played by persons 18 years and older. Titles in this category may include prolonged scenes of intense violence and/or graphic sexual content and nudity.

Penny Arcade

Interesting so I year separates the suitability of the game being vastly inappropriate to just fine to play. Of course it isn't just about that; the game is withdrawn as policy in many shops on account of this. It is very much a political thing.

It was interesting to see the reaction to all this. Even blogs of people who rarely ever move out of their own disciple have taken to talking about it.

The action has not stopped with Rockstar though. I was reading on Extra Life about articles mentioning Sims 2 content worse than Hot Coffee (the actual article). I'm not sure how you can define the extent of which someone has to mod a game before you should no longer consider that in any way part of the original game. In my mind it has to be one of the craziest rants that has ever had a press release but the media being what it is this might also take a life of it is own. VGCats had a interesting comic on the subject.


Retro Fortnight (Recently Played Games)

I thought I'd make my what I've been playing list a regular thing.

It's an old game from the disbanded Black Isle Studio who did do a range of really good games. I didn't feel this was one of them though. Lionheart failed to capture me much. The story seemed ok, a descendent of Lionheart in the world but where evil spirits had been released, but the actual character interaction and quests lead much to be desired pretty much just turning it into a click 'n slash game. I quick-saved where I was meant to quick-load and then just gave up.
Neverwinter Nights
A few friends and I tried playing Hordes of the Underdark (a single player expansion pack) online anyway. We had a few glitches but things seem to be going ok. There were a lot of complaints at Bioware that they released a single player only expansion pack. In all honesty I have single player roleplaying games that I can play; Neverwinter Nights is more enjoyable as a group and I felt it was a shame that the second expansion didn't accommodate that.
Burnout 3: Takedown
I've played the Party Crash mode of this a few times recently. It's a fun game. It's not quite as freeform as the second installment though and that's a pitty.
Dance Dance Revolution: Euromix
In an attempt to get a better rhythm sense and get a little healthier I've been playing this. With dance mats; of course.
Legend of Zelda: Four Swords
I've had this game for a while but I was waiting for four of us to get together with some GBAs for some Four Sword action. It was really good fun to play and I liked the simple graphics. They took me back to wanting to play some of the other Zelda series so you might see those on recently played later. There were a couple of issues though. We did the first stage then messed up saving. We figured we'd redo it and the second time my GBA's battery was running low so I paused and turned it of. The game sensed a player had disconnected and so ended the game! We couldn't be bothered starting it again so we played the Shadow Battle mode (PVP action) and then called it a night.


Grand Theft Auto San Andreas

The whole Sex Scenes in GTA: San Andreas has been predominant enough to make it into mainstream media. Effectively people are criticizing the ESRB system as a mod for the game allows a player to unlock some sex subgame. The current rating is (in the USA), I believe, an R and basically they want it set to some Adult Only rating which, as far as I can see is for the same age range as an R but lots of shops don't stock it or something.

The argument revolves around the fact that Rockstar North already had the code in there. Of course they may have had it in as they planed, but later dropped, the subgame. It's not officially part of the game, someone has to alter the code (even if only slightly) to access the mini-game so I fail to see how the ESRB can be criticized for failing to rate the game correctly as they can only rate the actually content they get to see.

I suppose the main point that I find worrying about is when I read things like this:

Once again, ESRB has failed our parents. This particular game has been known to include extremely heinous acts of violence, and now it has been uncovered that the game also includes explicit sexual scenes that are inappropriate for our children.

Leland Yee (Reported in the Scotsman)

That's the point isn't it? Why are you letting your young children play the game in the first place? I also find it sad that we deem extreme violence as better than showing some form of sexual act. That controlling some rendered models having sex is somehow worse than controlling those same models to beat a random street full of other models into a pulp.

I actually firmly believe that the GTA series should not be played by children I'm quite happy with games like it and Doom III actually falling under the BBFC jurisdiction.