that games are an 18 certificate for a reason?

(207 Posts)
theluckiest Fri 28-Dec-12 01:01:02

Friend on FB has posted a pic of his nephews glued to their xbox. Headsets on, big gamer chairs, not moving for hours. This is actually not the issue but I admit to cracking out the large (super stretchy thanks to Xmas) judgy pants when I saw the conversation under the pic. Kids are 6 and 8. They were playing Call of Duty, Black Ops which is an 18 certificate game. Quite a few replies from other people with witty comments about 'starting them early' and that they will be beating their dad soon enough.

I admit I huffed and tutted. Asked dh what he thinks as he is an occasional gamer and he was horrified as he plays this and it is very graphic. Do people not realise that games have certificates? Or not give a shit as it keeps the kids quiet?

And yes I am prob BU and my judgy pants are straining with the effort but I am a teacher so get judgy about stuff! Last year one of the kids in my class used to include some horrific stuff in his writing about heads exploding, people on fire, shootings. He spent hours playing COD, Grand Theft Auto, etc. with older brothers (he was 7).

Maybe I have finally become an old fuddy duddy stuffed shirt.....I remember watching 18 cert horror movies but am sure I was a young teen then (not 6!!) and games seem far more insidious as you become involved iyswim?

DadDancer Fri 04-Jan-13 14:25:27

Dragon Age definitely has sex in it.

it does but it is of the clothed dry humping variety. There are more raunchier scenes in your average PG rated Bond movie.

I think it boils down to this: no one thinks the games they play are that bad and are better than the games other people play. I'm as guilty as the next.

hey I liked Skyrim but i am not the fanboy type, i just used it as an example of how it was rated originally a 15 by BBFC and is now an 18 by PEGI.

But the thing is two different regulatory bodies, the BBFC and then later PEGI -who we as a society have placed to make these decisions on our behalf - both decided that Skyrim is not suitable for children and young teens. To argue against that is probably pissing in the wind.

No it was this so called elected government who have appointed them, not society, I don't recall being asked to vote on this matter, do you? When the majority of people are completely ignoring the ratings system, i don't see how arguing against it is pissing in the wind. If anything it is PEGI who are pissing in the wind, given that anyone can post the worst bits of a game on unrestricted youtube, which can be accessed by all ages. How many parents would actually ban their kids from youtube? Not many i imagine.

StuntGirl Sun 06-Jan-13 20:10:31

And who do you think elected the government grin

You are coming across as a bit fanboy-ish for Skyrim! I also wouldn't let my kids watch Bond either, for a variety of reasons - the sex being one of them. But again - no one's stopping you letting your kids play these games, and it's not affecting you if other parents make a different decision.

I think although people didn't directly elect a regulatory body there'd be a bloody outcry if it was removed. There are lots of regulatory bodies we haven't directly voted for, but they still exist and serve a purpose.

DadDancer Tue 08-Jan-13 12:48:56

And who do you think elected the government

Only 39% of the adult population voted for this coalition and i would say a fair few of them are a little disgruntled, especially the Lib Dem supporters. I think it’s fair to say that the government are becoming less and less representative of society at the moment. Seems all 3 of the main parties favour the nanny state these days too.

You are coming across as a bit fanboy-ish for Skyrim!

If you must insist on calling me a fan boy of a game then it would be for Mass Effect. Funnily enough it's another game that was rated 15 by BBFC and 18 by PEGI. Again i would have given it a PG rating and will indeed let my daughter play it with my supervision. Saying that she is only 2 and a half so is long way off mastering the xbox controller and a game like mass effect, although she can play Mario kart with the wheel!

I also wouldn't let my kids watch Bond either, for a variety of reasons

So fair enough you have decided it’s not suitable for your kids despite the censor saying it is. But doesn't this prove my point about age ratings being a waste of time and that it should be down to the parents to decide for themselves?

I think although people didn't directly elect a regulatory body there'd be a bloody outcry if it was removed.

Yeah there would be the usual outcry from a vocal minority of do-gooders and the Daily Mail no doubt, but I reckon most people wouldn't be bothered as that survey above proved. Also it would probably result in parents having to spend a bit more time vetting these games rather than lazily relying on the state to do so, which has got to be a good thing.

There are lots of regulatory bodies we haven't directly voted for, but they still exist and serve a purpose.

This is very true but it doesn't mean we shouldn't be questioning/ challenging these things.

DadDancer Tue 08-Jan-13 13:01:36

I had a look at the PEGI web site and it seems that even they have to concede the following in their FAQ's section:

Do games have an influence on children?
The research on the impact of videogames has been focused primarily on violence. Numerous studies have been published, but until today there is no evidence that playing violent video games causes any long-term or lasting increase in aggressiveness or violence among players.
Sources:
- Jonathan L. Freedman , Evaluating the Research on Violent Video Games
- Guy Cumberbatch, Video Violence Villain or victim?
- Raymond Boyle and Matthew Hibberd, Review of Research on the Impact of Violent Computer Games on Young People.

and

How long may a child play games?
As every child is different there is no fixed rule. Gaming as such does not entail specific health risks. It is a leisure activity, just like reading books or watching television. As it involves the use of your eyesight we generally advise these guidelines:

- Always play in a well lit room
- Take regular breaks
- Don’t play a game for hours on end, no matter how compelling it may be.
- Keep a minimum distance from the screen.

StuntGirl Tue 08-Jan-13 13:09:22

I have never said video games influence children's behaviour. In fact I said quite the opposite further upthread.

You lost my interest as soon as you brought up the Daily Mail as an antithesis against reason and your viewpoint.

I don't really know what you're so het up about. Bar the physical buying the game in the shop the law is entirely on your side. Buy whatever games you want, let you children play them. No one is stopping you.

TroublesomeEx Tue 08-Jan-13 14:01:54

My son is 14.

I don't let him play any 18 rated games. And he doesn't play them at his friends' houses either because his friends aren't allowed to have 18 rated games.

DadDancer Tue 08-Jan-13 14:18:40

I don't really know what you're so het up about. Bar the physical buying the game in the shop the law is entirely on your side. Buy whatever games you want, let you children play them. No one is stopping you.

I am not getting het up about it, just debating why I feel the current system is flawed. Whether it affects me personally is besides the point.

edit: Mass Effect was originally a 12 rating by the BBFC

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