Hatred Rated Adults Only by the ESRB

KazeAizen

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WhiteNachos said:
So speech that tries to piss people you don't like is not free speech? What arbitrary nonsense. How exactly is this different from 'any speech that deliberately offends people is not free speech' in a practical sense?

Charlie Hebdo published another magazine cover with Muhammad as a middle finger to the people who shot up their office. I guess you don't consider that free speech now (and if your response is that it's OK to piss off one group of people but not another you're a hypocrite).
I don't like Charlie Hebdo. There is a fine line between satire and just being offensive and they are the latter. Do I think they deserved to be shot for it. Heck no. Do I wish people wouldn't support them so they'd crumble? Maybe. I see what you are trying to do. You are trying to trap me. Sure Hatred is technically free speech I guess doesn't mean I or anyone has to tolerate it ever. If anything the studio will crumble because they won't sell enough copies of the game and that is fine by me.


Its controversy without a point. If you are being controversial just to be that you are absolutely pathetic. Its craving attention and nothing more and therefore doesn't deserve any of it.


Why does it deserve to be Ao? Couldn't you just ignore the game and go on with your life?
I could, but then I wouldn't be out there trying to convince other people to not buy this filth. I really am not the morally upright toe the line guy. Usually I let things be. However certain things just press my buttons in all the wrong ways and this happens to be one of them. Also this particular argument doesn't hold any water anymore as far as I'm concerned "Its something you don't like. You don't have to indulge in it, ignore it and move on." The logic of that is stupid. You don't ignore things you don't like. You do something about them or things won't change.
 

aliengmr

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The ESRB is one of the reasons congress didn't start legislating content in games. The industry showed it could police itself at a time when the industry was still young and had the perception of being for kids. Games being protected speech was not a concept back then and the industry wasn't worth hundreds of billions. The ESRB isn't useless, the people that don't read the ratings are.

Its really not the content of this game I find objectionable, its the undeserved attention. This game is shit so they're selling the controversy. If not for that no body would have cared. As it is, a legion of the faithful are going to buy it, shit game or not. While other developers are struggling to make their games stand on their own merits, these guys get to whine about how unfair everything is.

There's a price for being "edgy".
 

prowll

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Lunar Templar said:
Context people, context.

There's no satire, or parody here, nor is 'killing innocents' up to player digression like GTA, or the much better Saints Row games, or any sort of justification for it past 'the world is shit so I'm gonna kill every one'.

It is literally, just an ultra violent mass murder simulator. It deserves the AO rating.
This, so much this.

Let's say we see a preview of a game, and the only shot we see is a father smacking a kid. This could be perfectly OK (A scene in flashback, as part of an explaination why the main character ended up so bad, or hates alcohol, or has a bad relationship with his father), or totally wrong (a kid-smacking simulator). Comparing just what happened with no context is like comparing Alien with The Godfather, and saying they're the same because the body count is the same.

Capcha: do you speak spanish? HOW DOES THAT....
 

EXos

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I wonder how Steam will handle it in Europe then... the Rating system here (PEGI) doesn't go higher than 18. And there are plenty of PEGI18 games on there.

As for the game. The engine looks fun, I saw destructible physics in there. Other than that. Nah... I'll pass. (Okay maaaaybe when it's like ?0.99 in a sale)
After release though it will haunt the media a bit longer before poofing out of view only to be dragged back when there is a shooting somewhere and people need to point at something to blame... :S
 

remnant_phoenix

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Let's consider what each rating is supposed to mean...

MATURE
Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.

ADULTS ONLY
Content suitable only for adults ages 18 and up. May include prolonged scenes of intense violence, graphic sexual content and/or gambling with real currency.

So if we're just talking in terms of violence, the line between M and AO is "may contain intense violence" vs. "may include prolonged scenes of intense violence".

So yeah. This makes sense.

If the gameplay trailer is anything to go by, Hatred is just a constant stream of intense violence, as opposed to something like GTA, which, while it may contain intense violence, the violence is frequently punctuated by other types of gameplay, not to mention the context of parody/satire.

Makes sense to me, though based on what I'm seeing on this thread, it seems that most want to turn this into some kind of "anti-HATRED conspiracy because the game makes people uncomfortable" thing.

EDIT: Source: http://www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_guide.jsp
 

K12

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WhiteNachos said:
Well first of all you used the "it's less violent than God of War" argument twice despite criticising me for using an analogy which replaces killing fictional creatures for killing humans. The context of the violence in Hatred is very important. Killing innocent and defenseless civilians in a real-world setting is the main purpose of the game.

I agree that gaming should, in theory, be able to deal with any subject matter and that it is silly to have a reactionary "this is disgusting" attitude whenever a game deals with a sensitive or taboo subject. That said it's just as bad to have a reactionary defensive position of a game which seems to be almost exactly what all the anti-game pundits have been telling the non-gaming for decades. If we defend every violent game no matter how clearly distasteful, insensitive and shameless it is then our defenses are going to lose all meaning. My defense only goes as far as "it has a legal right to exist".

Neither of us have played "Hatred" (thus far we only have the trailers to work from) so I'm willing to concede that it is still (just about) possible that the game is actually an ingenious satirical deconstruction of what it is pretending to be an example of (a la "Spec Ops: The Line") but I highly doubt it.

The ESRB ratings are really weird. I'm more used to the PEGI ratings which make much more sense to me (although I still think they can be a bit harsh sometimes). My understanding of the AO rating has been based upon the precedent that Manhunt 2 got an AO rating. From that this ruling seems largely appropriate.

The AO rating isn't the ESRB preventing the game being sold. My understanding is that submission to the ESRB is voluntary and the reaction by suppliers and retailers to the ESRB is also voluntary. If it's freedom of speech to make a tastelessly violent killing spree simulator then it's also freedom of speech for a retailer to say "this is disgusting we won't sell this".
 

K12

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remnant_phoenix said:
Let's consider what each rating is supposed to mean...

MATURE
Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.

ADULTS ONLY
Content suitable only for adults ages 18 and up. May include prolonged scenes of intense violence, graphic sexual content and/or gambling with real currency.

So if we're just talking in terms of violence, the line between M and AO is "may contain intense violence" vs. "may include prolonged scenes of intense violence".

So yeah. This makes sense.

If the gameplay trailer is anything to go by, Hatred is just a constant stream of intense violence, as opposed to something like GTA, which, while it may contain intense violence, the violence is frequently punctuated by other types of gameplay, not to mention the context of parody/satire.

Makes sense to me, though based on what I'm seeing on this thread, it seems that most want to turn this into some kind of "anti-HATRED conspiracy because the game makes people uncomfortable" thing.

EDIT: Source: http://www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_guide.jsp
Actually, looking at those definitions you could argue that the real problem here is that the AO rating is massively underused and because of this retailers can win "we care about the children" points by refusing to stock AO games without actually missing out on any of the popular and profitable mega-violent titles that have an M rating.

I think Hatred is probably the most insensitive, mean-spirited, tasteless and shamelessly violent game I can think of (that isn't outright propaganda at least) but not by a huge margin enough for it to need it's own personal rating.
 

Mad World

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Political correctness got this game an "AO" rating. Simple as that. As many have stated, games just as bad have received mere "M" ratings.
 

Gordon_4_v1legacy

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Mad World said:
Political correctness got this game an "AO" rating. Simple as that. As many have stated, games just as bad have received mere "M" ratings.
No, being an insanely, almost totally context and irony free, simulation of mass murder got this otherwise unremarkable game the AO rating. Which is fine, such content is for adults and should be freely enjoyed by adults but everyone's bitching because this rating means Walmart won't stock the damn thing. Hypocritical I admit but hypocrisy has never been a barrier to policy, but if Steam are still willing to sell it I don't see a huge issue. That said, does Gamestop stock the AO rated games? I know EB Games stock R18+ games.

I'm more unhappy it got refused classification in Australia when it should have gotten the R18+ rating instead.
 

Mad World

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Gordon_4 said:
No, being an insanely...
Nah. I don't think that it needed one. It is a matter of precedent. If it receives an AO rating, many other game should, too.

And if Steam is willing to sell it, there probably is no big deal. But it still seems odd.
 

Gordon_4_v1legacy

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Mad World said:
Gordon_4 said:
No, being an insanely...
Nah. I don't think that it needed one. It is a matter of precedent. If it receives an AO rating, many other game should, too.
Too fucking right they should; some games have been in my opinion grossly underrated by classification boards due to the varying amounts of stupid around different systems; Australia's lack of the R18+ for example or death of a thousand cuts by company policy such as Walmart not stocking AO rated games in one breath and selling me Saw 1-7 and Pulp Fiction with the other. But as I said, hypocricsy is not a barrier to policy.

captcha: respect me.....Never in a million years, you heinous pain in my arse :p
 

Strazdas

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EternallyBored said:
Strazdas said:
Zontar said:
Then again the ESRB has always been useless, much like the broken and useless MPAA it was mistakenly modeled after.
To make the matters worse, many countries use ESRB as a legal limitation, as in this would actually mean its illegal to sell this game to minors.
Many countries? I think you are confusing the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) with something else, the ESRB is only used by the U.S. and Canada, and it has no legal or government authority behind it. I am only aware of one other ratings organization, and that is PEGI in Europe.

The ESRB was formed in 1994 from the Interactive digital Software Association (IDSA), and it was created in order for the industry to police itself to prevent the government from coming in and trying to impose standards. It was created when the scare around violent videogames was gaining steam, and was a joint effort by North American based video game publishers to self-regulate the industry.

The current retail death sentence that is the AO rating is something that needs to either be clarified or changed, but the organization is not responsible for any rating board shenanigans or censorship outside of the US and Canada
I agree i have mispoke there. i did mean PEGI and other alternatives. however they all work under same principle that ESRB does.

K12 said:
Erm... are you asking me whether I'm OK with the fact that a hypothetical game where you murder waves of concentration camp prisoners would almost cetainly never get sold (except on niche websites and straight from the publisher)

No... I don't see a problem with that? Are you saying that you do?
Yes. I do. I do because i believe that videogames should be able to express all venues of though. Just like other media types (books, music, movies) already can. After all, that kind of game would not actually hurt anybody, so banning it is pointless.

SonOfVoorhees said:
Manhunt was awesome and atleast it had a reason why you were killing and those you killed were gangs of sick fucks anyway. Its a game which im surprised no one has based a movie on. Not played MH2 as it was Wii only.
Manhunt 2 is on PC, i played it just last year. It is banned in a few countries (like Germany) though.

Its a horrible port though. hard-locked 30 fps and whatnot. And its not as gory as people make it out to be.



Winnosh said:
It is a rating people. And the rating fits the subject matter. I see no reason to be upset, as it would be similar to a movie like this getting an NC-17 rating for graphic violence and subject matter. Ratings exist for a reason and anyone who wants it can still get it.
And the rating would be fine if ratings worked the way they are intended - as a guide to consumer based on age. however they do not. Adult-only rating for gaming means no publisher will pick it.



Lieju said:
'Overly sensitive' people didn't get this game greenlit.
Well, not the kind of overly sensitive people who'd yell at people how offended they are by this game. No, the people who like to pretend gaming is under attack and can't just ignore people who have no real power got this game greenlit and want to throw money at it, not because they think they'll enjoy it, but because they care too much about what some people on Tumblr or whereever people who hate this game blog about it.

The only place I heard about this game was here on this site. This is all just so childish and all it's going to do is make gamers and their screams of free speech look even more childish.
The news about this game was making rounds around internet for a while. you only hearing about it here does not mean it hasnt been talked about.

Perhaps it didnt cross your mind, but perhaps there are people who greenlit this because they wanted a game that pushes conventional boundaries of what can be put into a game and wanted a different game from all those "enemies are zombies so i cant offend anyone" crap we get a lot now?

and even if people greenlit it just because they didnt want it taken down because of someones prejudice. thats a good thing. things like freedom of expression is a stance we need to take very seriuosly. If we give power to ban games for people that feel "offended" soon they will start demanding more than games to be taken down. remmeber last time that happened? Charlie Hebdo happened.

Winnosh said:
Yes it's just a game, it's a game that tackles extreem subject matter and should be rated as such. No one is saying it shouldn't be made, just that people should be informed as to what the game is, That's what ratings are for. Not to ban games but to alert people as to what a game contains.
The problem is, in US AO rating is as good as a ban.

Lieju said:
I'm just annoyed to see people being rewarded for making controversy-bait. I'm not saying they should be banned from doing it, I just would not like to see people supporting this kind of business model.
the point is - it would not be contraversy bait if overly sensitive people stopped creating contraversy out of it. the reason devs managed to cash in here is because of the offended people getting offended.
 

EvolutionKills

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WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
Am I the only one who recognizes that context plays a role here?

It's my understanding, and I could be wrong, that the ESRB doesn't actually play games to review them. The developer/publisher seeking a rating submits a video representing 'typical' game play across the spectrum that a player can be expected to experience. This is why GTA: San Andreas got it's original M rating because of course Rockstar wouldn't have submitted footage of the content unearthed with the Hot Coffee mod, because that content is simply not accessible without modding the game (and breaching the EULA if I'm not mistaken). I still think that the ESRB re-labeling GTA:SA as an AO game after the fact over a user created mod was bullshit, so take it for what you will.

So in context, a game where you play a street thug going on crazy adventures that involves gunfights with cops (who are armed antagonists trying to stop you) and the possibility of civilian casualties? Now compare that against a game whose sole purpose appears to be recreating a hate filled psychotic killing spree where the slaughtering of innocent civilians is the goal.
But I can still go on said killing sprees in GTA, Saint's Row, hell even Skyrim.
Right, so let's just ignore everything I was trying to point out and instead continue to hammer on the same tired argument.

Context. While the GTA series will allow a player to kill civilians, it is not the be-all-end-all objective of the game itself nor is it the defining narrative or selling point. GTA is no more a dedicated massacre simulator than Call of Duty or HALO are griefing or harassment simulators just because you can 'tea-bag' your opponents while cursing them out over your headset.


WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
In games like GTA it is a possibility, but I never remember a story mission that tasked me with slaughtering civilians on purpose for the sake of killing civilians.
There were missions where you had to kill civilians in GTA. In San Andreas one mission had you piloting a remote control plane killing deliverymen on bikes, another mission had you lock a construction worker in a porta potty, moving it into a hole and then filling the hole with cement with the guy still inside. M rating ladies and gentlemen.
Context and content once again. Those mission easily fall under the 'this is too goofy to be taken seriously' umbrella, as those missions are the most reminiscent of it's gonzo competitor Saints Row. Also that one mission has CJ trying to scare off the workers for hitting on his younger sister, and involves a series of escalating events before the final admittedly funny 'buried in cement in a porta-john' bit.

CJ didn't graphically dismember those those paperboys, nor was he on a hate fueled rampage lashing out. The only time the game ever got close to being similar to Hatred in that aspect was towards the final story missions that had you directing that furry at people who had personally betrayed CJ within the game's own narrative.

Also just how much else is there to do in any GTA game? I somehow doubt Hatred will have you racing cars, playing pool, hanging out with friends, working out at the gym, watching silly TV or comedy shows, trying your hand at being a paper-boy or EMT, or entering a low rider competition.


WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
Especially with the wave of mass shootings that have struck the United States in recent years?
Why should that factor into it?
Because cultural context is not created inside a vacuum.


WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
That might be enough to push a borderline game over the edge into AO territory. Especially if the footage they were supplied is far more graphic and visceral than what we have access to. But that's another thing to remember, as of yet all we have is screenshots and trailers, none of us have seen the footage the ESRB was given to evaluate; none of us have played the finished game.
Technically neither have they.
Irrelevant point. They also didn't play through GTAV or Skyrim or Fallout or Postal or Soldier of Fortune or the vast majority of games they rate, nor would it be practical to play though every game they rate, nor do they claim to play through every game they rate.


WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
There simply could be more than we are not aware of. Or the ESRB could arguably be overacting, both are possibilities.
It's a possibility, but I doubt it. If they put rape or nudity or sex in their game and then pretended they had no idea why their game was AO, then it would just blow back into their face when people found out.
If a movie is looking to be really shocking, does it generally give away it's most shocking moments in the movie's promotional trailer? If it's a decent movie with a decent marketing team, most probably not. I'm just saying that their game is looking to be purposely shocking and controversial, so I doubt they'd show their whole hand in their first trailer; but I could be wrong.
 

Mike Fang

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I admit I haven't played this game, but from the hype it sounds like this is "Postal" without the tongue in cheek humor. Pff.
 
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Call of Duty has you bomb poor, under-equipped and half-starved, insurgents who are fighting against an invading army, from an untouchable position in the sky like the holy hand of God. It also acts like this is a totally noble thing to do.

In terms of context Hatred is much better than almost every shooter because it portrays the destruction of life as an unequivocally bad thing perpetrated by an evil man. Nowhere in the official statements by the developers that I've do they state that the player is anything other than the bad guy in the scenario.

Say what you will, but there aren't many good reasons why hatred is different from many other shooters. The main difference is that the victims of violence are civilians as opposed to enemy combatants. The implication of course is that the exact same level of violence (and much worse, judging by the likes of COD Black Ops, Splatterhouse, Manhunt, Sniper Elite V2, Mortal Kombat, God of War, etc. etc. etc.) is OK if the enemy has even a token ability to defend themselves. It seems somewhat hypocritical to me.
 

freaper

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Dreiko said:
I am confused by the developer's confusion. He's implying mass murder is better than sex. It's baffling.
Aw man, have you never had mass murder before? It's great! Life-affirming and everything, plus you get to do it with other people!
 

remnant_phoenix

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K12 said:
remnant_phoenix said:
Let's consider what each rating is supposed to mean...

MATURE
Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.

ADULTS ONLY
Content suitable only for adults ages 18 and up. May include prolonged scenes of intense violence, graphic sexual content and/or gambling with real currency.

So if we're just talking in terms of violence, the line between M and AO is "may contain intense violence" vs. "may include prolonged scenes of intense violence".

So yeah. This makes sense.

If the gameplay trailer is anything to go by, Hatred is just a constant stream of intense violence, as opposed to something like GTA, which, while it may contain intense violence, the violence is frequently punctuated by other types of gameplay, not to mention the context of parody/satire.

Makes sense to me, though based on what I'm seeing on this thread, it seems that most want to turn this into some kind of "anti-HATRED conspiracy because the game makes people uncomfortable" thing.

EDIT: Source: http://www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_guide.jsp
Actually, looking at those definitions you could argue that the real problem here is that the AO rating is massively underused and because of this retailers can win "we care about the children" points by refusing to stock AO games without actually missing out on any of the popular and profitable mega-violent titles that have an M rating.

I think Hatred is probably the most insensitive, mean-spirited, tasteless and shamelessly violent game I can think of (that isn't outright propaganda at least) but not by a huge margin enough for it to need it's own personal rating.
True enough. There are plenty of games that could arguably qualify for the AO that end up rated M. I suspect that because games like GTA (arguably) have redeeming qualities outside the violence, the ESRB is inclined to go easier on the fact that the player can go on a mass-murder spree. And I don't doubt that it's because HATRED is, as you said, "insenstive, mean-spirited, tasteless, and shamelessly violent" to most peoples' sensibilities that the ESRB didn't pull any punches with the rating.
 

T8B95

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And oddly enough, the sun still rises in the east, birds are still flying in the sky, and the ground is still beneath my feet. Honestly, is anyone surprised? I called this back when the first trailer came out, and I said it again when Steam put it back on Greenlight.

As others have said, context is important. Like it or not, no media exists in a vacuum. Yes, I can go on shooting sprees in GTA. I can boot up the Sims and psychologically torture them to insanity. I can play Total War and commit mass genocide on civilian populations. However, these games aren't rated AO because the context of the game creates options to these actions, and those actions aren't the stated purpose to the games. In Hatred as portrayed, there are no options to ruthlessly gunning down begging civilians, and it IS the stated purpose.

Also, this isn't really "censorship" of the game. No one's saying the game can't be made, no one's saying the game can't be sold. The Adult Only rating means that major retailers aren't going to stock it (which as a digitally distributed game they weren't going to anyway), and Steam's likely not going to sell it, as is their right as a business. Free speech means that Hatred gets to be made; it doesn't mean that Steam (or anyone else for that matter) is obligated to sell it.

Also also, to the people who are saying "They're taking away our vidja gaems!!!" this isn't a video game specific issue. This is part of a larger cultural issue with adult-oriented entertainment. Specifically, there's no issue with R-rated films being released, but only one NC-17 film has gotten a wide US release in living memory (Showgirls, and we all know how that turned out).
 

WhiteNachos

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EvolutionKills said:
WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
Am I the only one who recognizes that context plays a role here?

It's my understanding, and I could be wrong, that the ESRB doesn't actually play games to review them. The developer/publisher seeking a rating submits a video representing 'typical' game play across the spectrum that a player can be expected to experience. This is why GTA: San Andreas got it's original M rating because of course Rockstar wouldn't have submitted footage of the content unearthed with the Hot Coffee mod, because that content is simply not accessible without modding the game (and breaching the EULA if I'm not mistaken). I still think that the ESRB re-labeling GTA:SA as an AO game after the fact over a user created mod was bullshit, so take it for what you will.

So in context, a game where you play a street thug going on crazy adventures that involves gunfights with cops (who are armed antagonists trying to stop you) and the possibility of civilian casualties? Now compare that against a game whose sole purpose appears to be recreating a hate filled psychotic killing spree where the slaughtering of innocent civilians is the goal.
But I can still go on said killing sprees in GTA, Saint's Row, hell even Skyrim.
Right, so let's just ignore everything I was trying to point out and instead continue to hammer on the same tired argument.

Context. While the GTA series will allow a player to kill civilians, it is not the be-all-end-all objective of the game itself nor is it the defining narrative or selling point.
I disagree that it's not a selling point and the fact that it's optional seems minor to me. It's like the following conversation taking place

"porn is bad"
"but you read playboy"
"well yeah but I don't have to look at the porn, I can read the articles".

EvolutionKills said:
GTA is no more a dedicated massacre simulator than Call of Duty or HALO are griefing or harassment simulators just because you can 'tea-bag' your opponents while cursing them out over your headset.
You can't compare the two. Firstly "tea bagging" is done while both participants are wearing armor, it's not really a sex act it just kinda looks like one. And second that is some unintended feature of the game, while in GTA the option to go on rampages had to be explicitly programmed in, with the wanted level sandbox and all. That's extra work.

EvolutionKills said:
[
WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
In games like GTA it is a possibility, but I never remember a story mission that tasked me with slaughtering civilians on purpose for the sake of killing civilians.
There were missions where you had to kill civilians in GTA. In San Andreas one mission had you piloting a remote control plane killing deliverymen on bikes, another mission had you lock a construction worker in a porta potty, moving it into a hole and then filling the hole with cement with the guy still inside. M rating ladies and gentlemen.
Context and content once again. Those mission easily fall under the 'this is too goofy to be taken seriously' umbrella, as those missions are the most reminiscent of it's gonzo competitor Saints Row. Also that one mission has CJ trying to scare off the workers for hitting on his younger sister, and involves a series of escalating events before the final admittedly funny 'buried in cement in a porta-john' bit.
Funny? I thought that was sadistic and cruel. I imagine being trapped in the porta potty and I think that's a horrible way to die. Being in a dark smelly john that you can't get open that will be your tomb, hopelessly banging on the door. I mean all they did was hit on his sister. Wouldn't this be solved with a punch in the face or just threatening them with guns?

EvolutionKills said:
CJ didn't graphically dismember those those paperboys, nor was he on a hate fueled rampage lashing out.
I'd say that was a hate fueled rampage against the construction workers.

EvolutionKills said:
The only time the game ever got close to being similar to Hatred in that aspect was towards the final story missions that had you directing that furry at people who had personally betrayed CJ within the game's own narrative.
But you can act like the hatred guy all you want, the game allows it, it programmed a sandbox that way. I don't see why this should make a difference to the ESRB.

EvolutionKills said:
Also just how much else is there to do in any GTA game? I somehow doubt Hatred will have you racing cars, playing pool, hanging out with friends, working out at the gym, watching silly TV or comedy shows, trying your hand at being a paper-boy or EMT, or entering a low rider competition.
"Hey if that porn magazine had articles I wouldn't have a problem with it"


EvolutionKills said:
WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
Especially with the wave of mass shootings that have struck the United States in recent years?
Why should that factor into it?
Because cultural context is not created inside a vacuum.
So basically the ESRB should be rating things based on offensiveness?

EvolutionKills said:
WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
That might be enough to push a borderline game over the edge into AO territory. Especially if the footage they were supplied is far more graphic and visceral than what we have access to. But that's another thing to remember, as of yet all we have is screenshots and trailers, none of us have seen the footage the ESRB was given to evaluate; none of us have played the finished game.
Technically neither have they.
Irrelevant point. They also didn't play through GTAV or Skyrim or Fallout or Postal or Soldier of Fortune or the vast majority of games they rate, nor would it be practical to play though every game they rate, nor do they claim to play through every game they rate.
So it's also irrelevant to say we haven't played through the game.


EvolutionKills said:
WhiteNachos said:
EvolutionKills said:
There simply could be more than we are not aware of. Or the ESRB could arguably be overacting, both are possibilities.
It's a possibility, but I doubt it. If they put rape or nudity or sex in their game and then pretended they had no idea why their game was AO, then it would just blow back into their face when people found out.
If a movie is looking to be really shocking, does it generally give away it's most shocking moments in the movie's promotional trailer? If it's a decent movie with a decent marketing team, most probably not. I'm just saying that their game is looking to be purposely shocking and controversial, so I doubt they'd show their whole hand in their first trailer; but I could be wrong.
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You have a point, still if they're saying there's no sex, I doubt they'd be lying.