I know that video games don’t cause violence, you know that video games don’t cause violence and members of the gaming industry know video games don’t cause violence. However, that won’t stop them from becoming politicized issues in North America, especially from lobbyist groups and politicians looking to target blame in the face of horrific violence crimes (instead of, you know, targeting the actual problems). That’s why the move for the ESRB to give brooding mass-murder simulator Hatred a rare “Adults Only” rating regrettably makes sense.
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The rating news comes from the developers at Destructive Creations, who note that Hatred would be the second game in history to receive an Adults Only grade based on violence and harsh language, and not for sexual content (which the game does not include). “Even if this violence isn’t really that bad and this harsh language is not overused,” a developer claims.
“The guy from ESRB (by the way – very nice, polite and cooperative one) told me it’s all about ‘the context’ which people they’re testing gameplay video on will see.”
The first game that did obtain this Adults Only rating was Thrill Kill on the PlayStation. The 4-player fighting game featured gameplay focused on killing others to fuel your bloodlust’s kill meter, which resulted in even more brutal murders once obtained. It was canceled weeks before being released in 1998 by EA, who didn’t want the game to harm their image.
And therein lies the reasoning behind Hatred’s Adults Only rating; ESRB doesn’t want to be held responsible from backlashes that would likely spawn from the game’s release on consoles in North America. Plus, with Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft’s policies that prevent the publishing of Adult’s Only games on their consoles, Hatred looks to either live or gruesomely die by Valve’s permission of launching the game on their service.
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