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How Video Games are Regulated in the US of A?

For kids and young teens, it’s typically their parents who are regulating their Agario playtime. These parents believe steadfastly that gaming is a pale activity than playing outside with friends or reading. But if we’re to look this at a bigger picture, there’s a legislative body that’s facilitating everything.

How Video Games are Regulated then?

Now you may be asking, who is performing all the regulations and doing the rating in the US? This is actually a job performed by the ESRB or the Entertainment Software Rating Board.

They were founded in 1994 in which the board sponsored portion of ESA or Entertainment Software Association.

As a matter of fact, the ESRB follows six rating guidelines for gamers and these are:

  • Early Childhood (games perfect for young children)
  • Everyone (ideal for everyone, hence the name but might have mild explicit)
  • Everyone 10+ (great for players 10 years old and above)
  • Teen (good for 13 and up)
  • Mature (17 and older)
  • Adult (games that are designed and can only be played for by 18+ and older)

It’s a Must to Adhere the Rules but how they Come up with it?

This is good and understandable. But you may even be surprised to know how ESRB is assigning the ratings for every game released in the market. The panel that does the rating doesn’t play the game, which may make you pause for a while and think. How the raters do the ratings then if they are not playing it in person?

They do this by reading and reviewing a detailed report given to them by the publisher. This report has the contents of the game so they could judge it on their own. To make sure that the publishers are not sneaking explicit contents, they have the ESRB staffs doing a test-play of the game after the release all the same while checking the box and that it has complied with the regulations.

Remember as well that raters are not experts in video games. In ESRB, they are basically adults who usually have experience with children regardless it is via education, parents, caregivers or prior work experience.