Call of Duty 6: Modern Warfare 2 is rated at 17+ in the US and certificate 18 in the UK. Those numbers are years old, not months. Now I don’t know how it is in the US, but in the UK if you sell an age restricted product, whether it’s a film, game, or even cigarettes, alcohol, knives (yes, knives) or fireworks to an underage person (or suspect that the person buying it intends to give it to an underage person) then you risk getting a criminal record…..
So check out the comments on WoodysGamertag’s latest video – you can watch the video too if you like but in a nutshell it’s a call for people who want to find decent people to play with to put their gamertage/age/location etc in the comments. A great idea. I thought I’d take a look to see if there was anyone in Europe around my age to game with……. 12, 13, 14, 15 years old – are the most common ages popping up there (and I suspect some of them have been probably been inflated by a year or two to appear “more grown up”).
I’m not a killjoy, those numbers may only reflect the average YouTube user’s age, but I think that the amount of kids – literally kids – playing adult rated games is a bit disturbing. The age rating is there for a reason – it’s not a guide. Children do not have the emotional maturity to deal with certain complex issues – that’s why they are children.
Now I’ve got two kids, one is too young to get what is going on and the other is old enough to know that CoD6 is a cool game as the kids in her school play it. But when I got it I wouldn’t play the single player campaign when she was around due to the themes, content and plot – life is complicated and potentially nasty enough without a ten year old worrying about the threat of double crosses and thermo nuclear war, especially from the very people who are supposed to be upholding the law and protecting the public.
There have been numerous claims made over recent years about video games influencing behaviour – the majority of which have just been knee-jerk reactions for people looking for something to blame the actions of others on – and personally I do not agree with most of the conclusions regarding gameplay and behaviour.
But I do shake my head in disbelief when I see, or hear of parents allowing their kids to play 18 rated games. Would they willingly buy them The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, or The Evil Dead? Probably not. Apparently then it’s not okay for a child to be a passive voyeur of death and destruction, but it’s okay for them to be the virtual protagonist!? Crikey!
Peas and loaves.
Find me on PSN – evaDlivE