[casual_games] If Vista is going to be such a problem...
adam.m.s.martin at googlemail.com
Fri Dec 22 09:45:52 EST 2006
On 22/12/06, Allen Partridge <allen.partridge at iup.edu> wrote:
> 1. Casual Games are (at least for now) different than the games
> traditionally rated by the ESRB.
I would go one further and say that most games are different. I think
you could argue successfully that MMOGs, console games, PC games,
advergames (not casual), etc are each "different". When you talk about
"traditionally", I wonder rhetorically which of those are you
referring to? My guess would be console games, but that is clearly
very different from PC games (as shown quite elegantly for instance by
Hot Coffee and nude models in Oblivion).
I don't think there's much solid ground in trying to divide things up
along such lines: we're talking about a consumer system, something to
measure how outsiders view the games, not how the game designers and
developers view them. How many of the consumers who care about ratings
could tell the difference between different types of game, and how
> 2. Educating the public on this matter is
> a.) beneficial to sales – it draws attention to the portals in the media
> – that translates to increased revenue.
...but it is also extremely expensive to achieve. Have you thuoght
about how much time and money it takes to achieve this?
> b.) not really relevant - people don't know what the ESRB is (normal
> people) they know that games are rated. Heck, I know parents convinced by
> their children that M stands for 'military'. ;) Who am I to break the bond
> between parent and child.
Given the money and lobbying devoted to ESRB I would think that you
have just made the point yourself about how hard it actually is to do
this kind of thing well.
OTOH, they disagree with you: http://www.esrb.org/about/awareness.jsp
> 4. Ratings systems are already splintered - across national boundaries. Why
> not carefully examine the way that other industries have addressed the
> issues and learn from their errors. Do it internationally, do it right, and
> do it in a way that promotes growth in every sector of the industry?
That its different in different countries is not necessarily a bad
thing - it allows the systems to reflect their often substantially
different cultures (for instance look at the different perceptions of
nudity in the UK and the USA).
Consumers are comfortable with the idea of national ratings systems
and generally don't need to think outside their home country. However,
diverging internally is an awful lot of work, magnifying the costs for
all concerned (because now its not merely a case of promoting a
ratings system in general, but additionally having to promote YOUR
rating system as opposed to someone else's).
Apologies if this seems very negative, I'm just trying to be
realistic. I'm no fan of the ESRB, but I see it as many times easier
to work with them than despite them. YMMV.
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