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Reader Comments (34)

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 11:39AM (Unverified) said

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"Mature Content" is a misnomer. It's a measure of maturity to be able to discern between right and wrong. Consuming excessive violence and lasciviousness destroys character and is simply wrong.

I personally will not play games with "mature" content, unless there is a filter. I think one of the reasons WoW has such mass appeal is because it's so family friendly.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 12:25PM (Unverified) said

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All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

For the most part, I prefer mature games. I also prefer that they come with a mature audience. I don't think it should be the developers' responsibility to keep kids out (aside from asking age/credit info at sign up). Parents need to take responsibility. WoW specifically requires that an account be held by someone 18+ and says that you're not allowed to let anyone else use your account - but how many teenagers are playing? That's a failure on the parents' part, not Blizzard's.

Not that I have many problems with most of the younger folks in wow. The few I knew were underage were often more polite than the unknown masses spamming barrens chat. I often watch what I say (type) in front of them, but I don't think the majority of adults playing a game that requires that players be 18+ have a responsibility to police what they say because someone who shouldn't be playing might be around.

It's more than just language though. There are places in society where adults can expect to have fun without children being around. If I'm in a bar, I don't want to have to think about what I say or what sorts of images are visible to children. Same story with mature MMOs. It's a good thing to have some that are specifically for adults. If they're specifically for adults, then there also shouldn't be a problem with some blood/gore or nudity. As adults, we should recognize that things that might cause blood/gore are not acceptable in reality. We should also recognize that nudity (in and of itself) is not corrupting or unclean and refuse to let the puritans convince us otherwise.

In the end, I expect that a range of MMOs will be developed that cater to the entire spectrum and individuals will be able to find one that fits their own interests. Personally, I liked the way Daggerfall (as a previous poster mentioned) presented itself. It felt very mature without making the mature content the focus. It just was part of the world. If an MMO is released with that sort of aesthetic and fun gameplay, I would be inclined to play it.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 12:46PM (Unverified) said

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Dragon Age is an example of it done right. It's a good soft R and if you want, can download some mods to push it to a hard NC-17.

I don't crave adult content just like I don't crave to see R rated movies. I like the choice to be able to do so. Some movies, such as "Inglorious Bastards", the violence is an integeral part of the story. The lovemaking scene in "John Adams" (An HBO Miniseries) was shocking because we're not used to seeing a president having such passionate and messy sex. It greately added in humanizing the character and it was one of the more touching moments of the series. If it ads to the story or the characters, then you should not take it out. Even though PG movies statistically make more money than R rated movies, I'm glad there are R rated movies out there.

The large majority of game players are adults. If you want me to find the statistic for you, I will (Pew study I believe).

Dragon Age sex and violence adds to the story. The splattering of blood is a symbolic visual effect that is part of the branding. The sex pulls you into the story. The characters that you choose to bring along with you are now no longer just rogues, mages, and warriors, they are characters that you care about.

I haven't played AoC but having topless women was the right move, for anyone that grew up with Conan books and the art of Boris Vallejo, nudity was part of the genre. While the inclusion of it might of seemed like a gimic, perhaps that is because they tried to make AoC too much like WoW and didn't give RPer enough tools.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 12:46PM (Unverified) said

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Better to have no restrictions and let the developers of whatever game decide for themselves what they want to put in their games. I don't necessarily want more or less mature content in any given game, I just want the game to be as good as possible and I hate it when developers have to cut back on their videogame in a way that lessens the experience for the player just because some people have issues with nudity or violence or alcohol or whatever.

If it helps the storytelling or gameplay and makes sense I don't really care what content I play as long as it's fun. If on the other hand it doesn't make any sense and they're just showing as much cleavage as possible (looking at you ME 2) it kinda ruins the immersion. There's a thin line between adding to the game and showing boobs for sales.

In regards to kids playing games with mature content, give me a break. I live in Europe where it's usually easier to get nudity on television than it is to get extreme violence on there and from what my American friends tell me it's the other way around in the US. Not saying that kids should be allowed to watch porn or slasher films but I imagine if their parents have a problem with it then the parents should be paying attention to what their kids are playing. If you don't care enough to get involved and spend an hour checking out the game your kid is playing for yourself you don't have any right to be taken seriously when you complain.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 12:55PM Lateris said

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I do enjoy the dark content like we have in Age of Conan.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 12:58PM (Unverified) said

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I love the mature content in AoC. It makes the world more realistic and quests more meaningful and interesting. It's one of the most important aspects of the game for me because it's not only about bewbz. It makes the environments much cooler too (torture chambers, sacrifical altars etc. really looks like torture chambers, sacrificial altars etc.)

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 2:26PM Cinnamoon said

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Perfectly fine with mature content, so long as what is meant by "mature" isn't actually "immature", and unfortunately that's usually the case -- rated M for imMature! Nudity, for example, isn't innately mature or immature. But games which use one-sided nudity to trashily appeal to a certain demographic lose my dollar. Sex in games is great. Female rape, though? (Hi, Conan.) Games which make the female characters run around in skimpy outfits while NOT doing the same for the men? (Hi, most games.) Games which turn sex into a cheap card game and a point system to see how many girls your male hero can deflower? (Hi, Witcher.) That might be "adult" but it's absolutely not "mature".

I'm looking for deep and heady escapism, not an excuse for cheap sexism.

Interestingly, most games which address other "mature" topics (racism, classism, slavery) do so with care, even with a strong slant towards denouncing the practices. Volumes could be written on the industry's reluctance to treat sexism the same way. To say nothing of violence itself.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 2:05PM SkuzBukit said

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Good to see that the majority of the posters thus far are drawing the distinction between mature topics & storylines & simple gratuitous tittilation.

I read somewhere that the average age of a gamer was 33, meaning there has to be a significant adult audience, & since that figure is only likely to grow as more & more games develop into mainstream entertainment there will definitely be a variety of markets open up.

I expect there will of course be gratuitous games, much like there will always be those kinds of movies, the best we can hope for is there to be a good choice, & just as in there being genuinely thought provoking & deep movies there will be games that explore that territory too, at some point in time there may be Pornographic games but I think those are actually unlikely, people were predicting the Merge of Porn & regular cinema back in the 70's when "Deep Throat" sparked many debates (& made the Mob a ton of cash) but it simply didn't happen & it probably never will, people like Porn as it is, though I can see mainstream games getting some adult material & getting sexed up, I think it will strive to be poignant to the stories or settings involved, I think audiences are just more grown up than they were 40 years ago because of the watershed of accessibility, and the becessity to adapt to that.

Overall I'd like to see more mature games, but like an earlier poster points out, it will place even more importance on good parenting to make sure that the expansion & variety of ways to deliver adult entertainment & media are only consumed by the relevant age groups, protection of children should always remain on the agenda.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 3:33PM Liltawen said

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I liked the way Conan handles it.
I would like to see more 'intense' games which I guess is similar to 'mature' but not quite.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 7:21PM Bezza said

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If by mature content you mean gore & boobs then no I dont find it partucularly gratifying. If on the other hand mature content means adult themes and deeper storylines then yes please bring it on.

Posted: Mar 23rd 2010 8:20PM cray said

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I think the industry needs to acknowledge that there are more adults playing MMOs now, After playing video games 20 years and being exposed to massive amounts of violence, I think it's about time we get a dose of sex in our video games.

I'm not suggesting we just go with lowest common denominator in terms of substance, I just think this industry could use a serious change in themes. Instead of games focusing on killing as means of winning, why not introduce the complexities of diplomacy. A big part of that is relationships and romance (sex) is a big part of that.

Posted: Mar 24th 2010 3:34PM (Unverified) said

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I'm all for Mature content in games. People need to stop thinking of the video game industry as a kids industry and realize that those playing the 360, PS3, and PC are averaging around 30. Without the freedom to write any story they wish game developers are never going to be able to make grade A stories.

Posted: Mar 24th 2010 11:20PM (Unverified) said

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Blood, gore, sex, and violence do not a mature game make. I'm all for maturity in gaming, but let the story and thematic content dictate what's included. Explicit depictions should be utilized only when they are an integral component of the story being told.

Posted: Mar 28th 2010 1:09AM (Unverified) said

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The "M" rating for games in the USA means fewer young kids will get into the server. But you know what? Young kids play games better than many adults. They may not get my jokes but I don't get theirs either, so we're even.

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