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Microsoft: UK ratings could make games more expensive

Friday, 27th June 2008 12:59 GMT By Mike

Not only could UK ratings make games appear later than everywhere else, but now Neil Thompson, Microsoft’s senior regional director for EDD in the UK and Ireland, says that it could make games more expensive.

“We’re in the business of providing great games to a broad audience of gamers, and we need to be able to fulfil that role by getting products to consumers quickly and at a good price,” said Thompson in an interview with GI.

“We’re concerned with any measures that would mean this process is made more unwieldy, or incurs additional costs which have to be shared with the consumer.”

Brilliant news that, I’m sure you’ll all agree.

By Mike Bowden

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10 Comments

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  1. SticKboy

    BULLSHIT – it’s all about control.

    #1 6 years ago
  2. Robo_1

    “additional costs which have to be shared with the consumer”

    That’s very good of them.

    #2 6 years ago
  3. Blerk

    Surely the money they have to spend getting games rated by the BBFC is the same money they were previously spending getting the games rated by PEGI?

    #3 6 years ago
  4. Axle

    Exactly. The only difference is that submission to the BBFC is (I believe) currently voluntary and is largely determined by its PEGI rating.

    I can see why there is an argument for normalising the ratings system so everyone can understand it, I just don’t understand why EA, MS et al have to ‘ZOMG’S!!!! the price is going to increase it’s going to ruin innovation’.

    It’s all a bit transparent to be honest.

    #4 6 years ago
  5. Gamoc

    It’s not hard to understand the fucking rating system. 18 = 18 years or older, 15 = 15 years or older, etc. It’s the easiest thing in the world. The government need to get their noses out of things that aren’t their business.

    #5 6 years ago
  6. deftangel

    Presumably they haven’t had to add on costs or delay games like Halo 3, Gears of War, Scene It?, Mass Effect, NG2, Crackdown, Age of Empires III or Viva Pinata then, all of which have BBFC ratings already…

    :|

    #6 6 years ago
  7. Psychotext

    deftangel: They’re talking about changes to the system which would cause the increase in costs:

    “We’re concerned with any measures that would mean this process is made more unwieldy”

    #7 6 years ago
  8. SticKboy

    @ Psychotext

    The only major change to the status quo is that the BBFC would now have to classify 12-rated games – previously they only had to classify 18- and 15-rated games. As far as I was aware, BBFC classification was mandatory for any game containing a certain amount of mature content (sex/violence/bad language/parking on a yellow line), so there really isn’t very much change at all.

    The main difference is that the BBFC actually play each game in order to determine a rating, whereas with PEGI it’s largely determined by the publisher themselves, thanks to its check-box rating system. Moreover, PEGI is maintained by the ISFE, of which all the major publishers are members, allowing them a certain amount of influence. The BBFC on the other hand, is a not-for-profit quango that isn’t beholden to any studio, publisher or distributor.

    The idea for a major publisher to pay money for something they have no control over is against their very nature – and in my opinion *this* is the reason they’re so pro-PEGI. Fuck appropriate ratings, it’s all about the £ and $ for them.

    #8 6 years ago
  9. Psychotext

    SticKboy: I don’t know anything about any of it. I was simply pointing to why they might be concerned about charges vs the existing games they’ve had certified. :)

    #9 6 years ago
  10. Whizzo

    The BBFC were already classifying 12 rated games anyway, take a look at the boxes for World in Conflict or Tomb Raider Anniversary, both pre-Byron Report releases. Most games won’t even need BBFC classification just like it is now.

    This is such bullshit, they dodge the crackdown on “evil” games bollocks through an excellent study yet the publishers are whinging like 2 year olds that have dropped their dummies.

    #10 6 years ago