As someone who doesn’t drink or smoke, I’m not used to being asked for my ID. Even when I was into Karaoke, the local bars rarely bothered to check my age. “Don’t worry about him. He’s just having French Fries and a Soda.” Yet today, I got a chance to feel young. I actually got carded to buy a video game. Call of Duty 4 is rated Mature!
I mean come on, I even have some gray hairs on my head. What is this about? When did the industry change? No one bothered me when I bought Mortal Kombat. If anything, I got more hassled when I wanted to return it for Mario Paint. I suppose it took a while, but the industry has matured. I did some research and I found this interesting paragraph, in a New York State Senate Press Release…
Rating System Labeling Requirement — under current State law, there is no requirement that retailers place labels on video games sold in New York. To address this shortcoming, would establish a new requirement that every video game sold in New York by a retailer or over the Internet, whether new or for resale, must have a clearly displayed rating indication on the game cover or elsewhere (such as on a website). Individuals who violate these provisions will face fines and penalties.
It looks like the new requirement is in effect.
With photo realistic violence, a ratings system is important. It adds a sense of legitimacy and responsibility to the video game industry. Yet, I do not believe that video games or movies are as harmful as cigarettes or alcohol. If I drank or smoked as much as I played video games, I’d be a mess. Do video games truly deserve to be in the same league? Is there truly a link between violence and violent video games?
Eh, it’s not for me to judge the rating system or the enforcement of that system. I’m not here to get political. I’m just stating my surprise. As I purchased my game, I watched the computer screen display an ominous alert. Before the sale could be complete, I had to break out my driver’s license. Can video games really be that harmful to minors? Are they harmful to me?!
What do you think?!