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Study Finds That 'M'-Rated Games Sell Best 107

Posted by Zonk
from the m-is-for-mass-market-right dept.
Gamasutra is reporting on information from a new research firm called Electronic Entertainment Design and Research, which has recently released a number of papers looking into trends in the gaming industry. One (perhaps surprising) finding: M-rated titles sell better than any other rating group. "The study, titled 'Console Intelligence Brief 2007' examines the PlayStation 3, Wii and Xbox 360 since each consoles' release through June 1, 2007, and comprises some 219 retail and 187 downloadable games made available on the new platforms, examined by genre, ESRB rating, gross sales in the United States, MetaCritic scores, online functionalities, multiplayer capability and other core game features. Among the sample results made available, the study found that critics' favorite list and the blockbuster charts have a lot in common, with highly-rated titles selling up to five times better than titles with lower scoring reviews. Despite online connectivity being a marketing cornerstone for all new consoles, the study concluded that 45 percent of retail games are not utilizing it in any way -- 98 percent of Nintendo Wii games have no online functionality at all."
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Study Finds That 'M'-Rated Games Sell Best

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  • Almost all AAA titles are M.

    The best games are M.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by alvinrod (889928)
      I'm not quite sure that I completely agree with your assessment that "The best games are M." As an example, are games that are rated E or T not capable of being considered as the best? Games such as The Sims, Civilization, Super Mario Bros., Tetris, etc. are not rated M, but are considered among some of the best games of all time. If you look at IGN's Top 100 games list [ign.com] I don't think there are any games in the top 10 that would be rated as Mature. The first M-rated game I could find on the list was Metal Ge
      • by CogDissident (951207) on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @12:33PM (#20555721)
        I would like to note, in IGN's top 100 games, all of them are old. Infact, the only game in their top 20 that was made after the year 2000 is Rome: Total War, which is an M rated game.

        In the 20-30 range, all of the ones made in 2000 or later are M rated games, except burnout 3.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Applekid (993327)
          Perhaps this highlights the toll the ESRB has taken on the gaming universe.

          I recently played through Tomb Raider Anniversary with the commentary on. I had forgotten that, in the original Tomb Raider, if Lara would fall atop spikes she would be impaled upon them. It wasn't until the commentary mentioned that they weren't allowed to do it in the remake and keep the rating they needed for the target audience.

          Developers of M games don't have their hands tied like those targeting younger audiences. Then again, t
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by alvinrod (889928)
          Does a game being old somehow preclude it from being a great game or one of the best of all time? I'll agree that a bit of nostalgia may have crept into IGN's list, mostly because Super Mario Bros. is rated as the number one game of all time (I contend that Super Mario Bros. 3 is a superior game, but that's only my opinion.) but many other games have legitimate reasons for being there. Super Metroid and Legent of Zelda: OOT are regarded as the best games in their series by many and as the best game of their
          • by Gulthek (12570)
            Does a game being old somehow preclude it from being a great game or one of the best of all time?

            No, but it does preclude it from having an 'M' rating since many were made before the ESRB even existed.
            • by alvinrod (889928)
              The ESRB was established in 1994. Only covers about 40% of games on IGN's list were released before that time. Of these, how many, if rated today would receive a Mature rating from the ESRB? Some can be easily removed from speculation since they've been rereleased on the Wii virtual console and have thus been subjected to evaluation by the ESRB. Only a small few (such as Doom) would likely receive an M rating, although it's possible that by today's standards they would receive a T rating.

              I think we're just
        • by Creepy (93888)
          Rome is a Teen rated game, not M rated (look at the cover displayed). I imagine if the battles were bloody that would change, but they're not (just corpse ridden).

          Few of the best selling games of all time [wikipedia.org] are M rated, and few of those are even on that list of top 100 games - probably because most good sellers appeal to casual gamers - games like Super Mario Bros, Super Mario World, Tetris, Pokemon Red, Blue and Green, the Sims, etc. GTA is the only real franchise that breaks that trend.

          What this says to m
  • Of course they do (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Pojut (1027544) on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @11:20AM (#20554241) Homepage
    Most gamers are in the demographic that m-rated games appeal to...
    • And yet... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Alaren (682568) on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @12:01PM (#20555041)

      This would clearly explain why the best-selling games of all time are franchises like The Sims, Pokemon, Super Mario Brothers, Final Fantasy, and Grand Theft Auto...

      Except that only one of those series is "M." Hmmm. Having the highest average gross sales (per the article instead of the article's title) is apparently not the same as "selling best." In fact, the best-selling games are consistently not M-rated, the way the best-selling movies are disproportionately rated "G" or "PG" and yet on average G-rated movies do not do nearly well as PG-13 or R movies.

      The point is not that M-rated games sell better, it's that M-rated games are a good way to hedge your bets. If you get a true "E for Everyone" blockbuster, you will blow most M-rated sales figures out of the water. But if you fail, you will fail spectacularly. Whereas, cranking out another FPS will likely turn a modest profit even if it isn't a great game. I have heard similar things said about R-rated movies; enough adults are just "looking for something to see" that a cheaply-produced R movie might be profitable while a badly produced children's movie will not attract any viewers at all.

      • From the article...

        Finally, the study has also found that the Nintendo Wii has seen more than twice the number of retail and downloadable game titles than either the PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360 in the first 7 months after each platform's launch.

        ...And how many games on the Wii are rated M? None.
        Interesting...
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by LehiNephi (695428)
      It's also important to keep a few things in mind:
      --Violent games were around long before the ESRB ratings
      --FPS's are, and have been for a while, the most commonly-produced type of game. Which means that, all other things being equal, more big hits will be FPS's
      --The games that are the best-funded and best-hyped (aside from the more recent phenomenon of MMORPGs) are FPS's
      --New graphics technology tends to first appear in FPSes
      --What red-blooded 16-30-year-old male wouldn't like to run around, blowing e
    • by ookaze (227977)
      Of course they don't.
      This study is flawed from the start.
      It's analyzing the US market for only PS3, Wii and Xbox 360.
      The XBox 360 is out for 1 year more than the other two, and has the bigger marketshare in the US for now.
      Besides, the best XBox 360 games and sales are shooters.
      All of this is very convenient for the study, when the result is skewed by the fact that the XBox 360 is a hardcore console, in the sense that it caters very well to the tastes of US reviewers, which are very limited tastes.
      I can't he
  • Try another gamble (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Durrill (908003) on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @11:24AM (#20554301)
    Perhaps the industry should open up a bit more to AO rated games. Maybe they'll be surprised as to the results. Video games are not a children only medium. If they came to the conclusion that parents should govern what games their children should play, then they'd be willing to market adult oriented media. Last I saw, the porn industry was still thriving.
    • by AvitarX (172628)
      Que "it shoots money" animated gif.
    • by MoHaG (1002926)

      ....If they came to the conclusion that parents should govern what games their children should play, then they'd be willing to market adult oriented media....
      And here in South Africa it is illegal to sell a game to someone aged under the game's age restriction. This should make it harder for children to (directly) obtain such games.
    • by jandrese (485)
      I think you're right that people would be willing to buy AO games (especially if they weren't _too_ porny, just a flash here and there), the problem is that lots of stores wouldn't sell them, and you would be locked out of the lucrative console market entirely.

      Unfortunately, there is a catch-22 with AO games. Publishers know they won't be able to sell or advertise them much, so they're not willing to take much risk with them. This means AO games will be low budget affairs that will tend to suck. This r
      • by dada21 (163177)
        I think you're right that people would be willing to buy AO games (especially if they weren't _too_ porny, just a flash here and there), the problem is that lots of stores wouldn't sell them, and you would be locked out of the lucrative console market entirely.

        So let them sell them to website retailers or even directly. The web allows many more gaming products to be promoted through word-of-mouth, blogs, gaming sites, etc.

        This means AO games will be low budget affairs that will tend to suck. This reinforce
        • by CastrTroy (595695)
          They do it for music, I don't see why the same couldn't be done for video games. Granted there's not "Adult Only" music, and I remember buying albums with "Parental Advisory" stickers when I was 12, but that doesn't mean there isn't a market for both. Many parents buy the edited versions of pop albums for their kids.
        • by jandrese (485)
          They are rated by a panel people, just like how the Movie industry rates films. I don't think they give out names, but you can rest assured that the people on these panels are the ones that deem themselves to have "outstanding moral character" and see themselves as a bulwark against the flood of pron that would result if they just let people do what they want. In the US they tend to be much more concerned with nudity/sex than with violence. An occasional flash of nipple/butt here and there is acceptable
        • Ya know, I would really like to see the T/M rated scheme applied to games here. When reading the interviews about Lair on the PS3, it was revealed that the ESRB made them change a flying manta ray boss - a living organism - so that it blew up after you killed it, as opposed to bleeding, for the T rating. Erm, it's a living thing, folks, it's gonna bleed if you're hacking at it with a dragon! I'd be more interested in an M version of Lair, just so that last-minute (probably craptastic) ESRB nerfing hasn't
      • by Phisbut (761268)

        I think you're right that people would be willing to buy AO games (especially if they weren't _too_ porny, just a flash here and there), the problem is that lots of stores wouldn't sell them, and you would be locked out of the lucrative console market entirely.

        I wonder though, why don't store sell them? I might understand Walmart's excuse for not selling adult stuff, but about game shops like EBGames and such? They're already asking for ID (or at least, they do over here) when they sell a M-rated game, w

        • Along the same lines they could do what (at least my local) FYE does for adult movies. They place nice big markers in front of the movies with a big "A 18+" on them so you know what kids aren't allowed to be looking at. Then again this is also the same store which ended up with a copy of the Bible Black game...(one of those Japanese adult games mentioned above).
        • by RexRhino (769423)

          I wonder though, why don't store sell them? I might understand Walmart's excuse for not selling adult stuff, but about game shops like EBGames and such? They're already asking for ID (or at least, they do over here) when they sell a M-rated game, why would it be any harder to ask for that same ID for AO-rated games?
          Because if EBGames screws up, they get sued and fined for millions of dollars. Eventually, with thousands of stores and employees, they WILL screw up.
          • by Phisbut (761268)

            Because if EBGames screws up, they get sued and fined for millions of dollars. Eventually, with thousands of stores and employees, they WILL screw up.

            And what keeps those very same employees from screwing up with M-rated titles?

            • by RexRhino (769423)

              And what keeps those very same employees from screwing up with M-rated titles?
              Nothing. They will screw up those M rated titles, and EBGames will get sued and fined millions of dollars.

              But because M rated titles are such a large segment of gaming, the rewards are so huge that it will pay for the losses due to fines and lawsuits. EBGames makes so much money from selling M games that it easily is worth a few lawsuits once in a while.
        • Parents presently let their kids wander around EB freely, looking at titles and probably finding something to hassle them into buying.

          Can you imagine them letting the kids run as freely or as often, if EB started carrying AO titles? Or, in the case of some parents, do you think they'd even let their kids be in the store? Especially if the AO titles aren't kept behind the counter, totally out of view. And if it's out of view entirely, the three mouth-breathers who read about it on the interweb and DIDN'T
          • by Phisbut (761268)

            That having been said, this applies to pr0n only. If it's AO because of dismemberments with chainsaws, I don't think the parents would change their current behaviour.

            That's what I meant. When GTA got re-rated AO, why did it get pulled off the shelves? It's the same game, and as you mentionned, parents won't care more. Manhunt 2 might be rated AO, but Rockstar might try to get it M. It will still be the same game, and only details will change between M and AO. I can't understand the AO not being available.

            • Ah. Actualy, one thing I should've brought up is the protest factor. It's kinda like when the first adult bookstore opened in the small town in TN I was trapped living near for 15 years. There were protesters, church groups taking down customers' license plates, a couple attempts at arson, and a few news and newspaper stories. The name of the store, in case any of the stories have made it to the internet, was "Southern Secrets", and the town was Clarksville, TN. Of course, it didn't help that the owner
      • Unfortunately, there is a catch-22 with AO games. Publishers know they won't be able to sell or advertise them much, so they're not willing to take much risk with them.
        What if there was another category higher than AO that can move the stigma to the higher rating? How about PC for Prurient Content?
        • by jandrese (485)
          Basically making AO the NC-17 of the game industry and making a new X rating? Look how well that worked for NC-17 movies.
          • by HTH NE1 (675604)

            Basically making AO the NC-17 of the game industry and making a new X rating? Look how well that worked for NC-17 movies.

            No, that's different. R wasn't stigmatized before NC-17 was created. NC-17 inherited stigma from X (not an official MPAA rating). An official ESRB rating higher than AO would clean up AO.

            An unofficial non-ESRB rating similar to movies' X might also have lifted stigma from AO if not for the NC-17 experiment serving as a counter-example.

            Seriously (since PC as Prurient Content should have been an obvious joke about Political Correctness), an official ESRB rating that restricted games under it to ages 21 or

    • by vimh42 (981236)
      Actually, let's forget about Porn for a moment. If there was a choice between buying an AO version Manhunt 2 or a MA version, which do you think gamers would buy? Honestly I'd like to see publishers would open up to AO ratings for games because it would allow developers to really push things creatively without worrying about the rating.
    • Perhaps with the notable exception of Caligula, have you ever....ever seen an adult movie with anything other than minimal plot development? Have you ever watched an adult movie and said to yourself, "Gee, I never expected it to end that way...."?

      Let's be realistic, in the adult movie world, "character development" means "he needs a fluffer".

      With this in mind, do you really imagine that AO rated games will be heralded for thier "clever design" and "stunning game play"? Do we really want to see the AO equi
      • by corsec67 (627446)
        "Midnight Cowboy" was rated X when it came out.

        More recently, Shortbus was really good, with a plot and tons of character devlopment.
      • Let's be realistic, in the adult movie world, "character development" means "he needs a fluffer".

        Only because that's how Americans WANT it. In Japan, 'eroge' (erotic games) are extremely popular, and run from plotless, pointless animated pornography to absolutely epic (and often well-written) storylines that occasionally have graphic sexuality, but take longer to read through than a full length novel.

        It's not that a game like that COULDN'T be successful, but I suspect it would take a while for the American

        • by 7Prime (871679)

          Only because that's how Americans WANT it. In Japan, 'eroge' (erotic games) are extremely popular, and run from plotless, pointless animated pornography to absolutely epic (and often well-written) storylines that occasionally have graphic sexuality, but take longer to read through than a full length novel.
          Obviously, Japanese men take a lot longer to get it up.

      • Perhaps with the notable exception of Caligula, have you ever....ever seen an adult movie with anything other than minimal plot development? Have you ever watched an adult movie and said to yourself, "Gee, I never expected it to end that way...."?

        Depends on what you consider to be an adult movie.

        If you're just talking about porn, then no.
        If you're including movies aimed at adults, even if you're not counting the rated-R and only including NC-17, then yes, I've seen quite a few excellent "adult" movies.
      • by grumbel (592662)
        ### With this in mind, do you really imagine that AO rated games will be heralded for thier "clever design" and "stunning game play"?

        Last time I looked that is exactly what happened with Fahrenheit and GTA:SA.
    • by rtechie (244489)
      The industry is keenly aware that there is big money in porn games. That isn't the issue. The issue is that video games are unfortunately regarded as a "kids media" like comic books. And just like comic books in the 1950 legislators have seized on video games (I'm looking at you Hillary Clinton) as a way to score easy "for the children" points against an industry that can't do them a lot of damage. Never mind that most of the legislation they pass is obviously unconstitutional.

      It's that last part that's the
    • by westlake (615356)
      Perhaps the industry should open up a bit more to AO rated games. Maybe they'll be surprised as to the results. Last I saw, the porn industry was still thriving.

      The market might be more open to AO content if "Adult Content" meant something more to the game developer than pornographic sex and violence.

      Rockstar's Manhunt 2 was nothing more than a late attempt to cash in on the success of torture porn [wikipedia.org] flicks like Saw and Hostel - box office poison this past summer.

  • The folks in the 'M' category are usually the ones who are earning the money. Sure, we buy the games for the little ones, too, but we enjoy a good game as well. And let's face it, the games we play most are the ones with exploding heads and scantily clad girlies.
  • M is the new PG-13 (Score:2, Insightful)

    by shidarin'ou (762483)
    And they probably have the same amount of objectionable material in them, since ESRB ratings are tougher than MPAA. It's interesting that both are directed at different age groups rating wise, have the same content and sell the same. Of course, I stood behind a parent pre-ordering 5 M rated games for their 6 year old, so why am I surprised?
    • by Sciros (986030)
      Very insightful and a very valid point to bring up. I too have noticed that an M-rated game is often less "objectionable" than many PG-13 movies. In other words, while M-rated games sell best, that does not mean it's necessarily due to violence/gore (let's face it, there's really no sexual themes in M-rated games to speak of).
    • by vimh42 (981236)
      Why should you be surprised. The rating is a general guideline meant to be informative, not something definitive that a parent should stand by.
    • by SanityInAnarchy (655584) <ninja@slaphack.com> on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @12:30PM (#20555587) Journal
      Many parents have learned to have a knee-jerk reaction to these ratings. For example, I've known a 12-year-old child who is not allowed to watch any R-rated movies.

      That's lazy parenting.

      If you really don't want your child to see violence, read the actual comments that come with the rating and see what is meant by "violence". Or, gee, watch the movie yourself before deciding whether to show it to your kids.

      Maybe if parents (and kids!) were made to actually evaluate the content used, we wouldn't have every game out there deliberately trying for an M, just as every movie tries for PG-13. This means, for example, tweaking a movie to have just a little more violence and a little less sex to fit into that rating.
      • "Lazy parenting?" Now that's a knee-jerk reaction.

        Many parents use the 'no R-rated movies for the preteen' as a good baseline for their decisions. If the kid hears about a movie he thinks he's old enough for, he asks his parents and they make a decision (by watching the movie themselves, reading reviews, by reading the 'graphic rape' MPAA tag, or what-have-you).

        In your proposed ideology, one thing is necessary; the parents have to filter everything their child wants to see. Now I don't know about you, but w
      • Heh. I was allowed to watch my first R-rated movie, "Terminator 2", at 16 or so.
        • I saw die hard when I was 8. And was playing Doom by 10. Well, mostly watching my dad play it, the bastard. But once he finished, then I played it.
          • Strangely enough, I was permitted to play pretty much any game I wanted, barring the dreaded Leisure Suit Larry series. That included the spectacular C-64 game "Commando Libya", which I used a hex editor on during Desert Storm to mutate into "Commando Iraq" (i.e. changing the messages displayed), much to the glee and amusement of various returning Army veterans on the BBS I was on back then. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commando_Libya [wikipedia.org]

            I kinda miss games like Commando Libya. So simple, yet so fun. I don't
      • "Deny all" is a sensible default, in parenting as well as computer security. You can quite reasonably make the determination that given what passes for a PG-13 these days (Die Hard, for crying out loud) there is no reason your twelve year old needs to be seeing an R.

        The entire point of having a ratings system is that so you can make a snap judgement about the likely content of a movie, without actually having to see the movie. With the rating system, you can browse the list of 12 shows at the movie theatr
        • Off the top of my head, "A History of Violence". Plenty of sexual situations there between the married couple. I do agree though, Hollywood ought to figure out that married couples are allowed to have sex too.
          • by patio11 (857072)
            Oh, now I remember: Mr and Mrs Smith. Granted, that isn't quiiiiite the behavior you want to be modeling for your kids. ("Its alright, honey, she's an assassin -- getting beat up is in her job description. And look, she got him back. Gender equality rules.")

            On a serious note, though, I wouldn't mind if more movies were like the Incredibles (which suggests, in a wink-and-a-nod way that goes WAY over the heads of the younguns in the audience, that marriage is sexy).
  • by alvinrod (889928) on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @11:37AM (#20554559)
    After looking over some information [theesa.com] from the ESA, this really doesn't come as much of a surprise to me. They point out that the average age gamers is 33. Does it come as any surprise to anyone that a 'mature' audience might prefer 'mature' content? This isn't to say that all gamers in their twenties and thirties like blood, gore, and other things such that they'll buy any game that has them, but if we look at a lot of the most popular games, they deal with subject matters (warfare, the mafia, etc.) that have violent content in them in order to stay true to the subject matter and portray it more accurately. These people have the disposable income to purchase these games which are most suited to their interests.

    Another factor is probably young children perceiving these games as 'mature' and that playing them will make them more grown-up. I don't know how much weight this theory holds, but I've heard it used before and don't find it as hard to accept. There might also be the allure of playing a game that you're 'not supposed to' play because it might be too much for you to handle. Curiosity has probably gotten more people to look at goatse (or something else described as incredibly sick), moreso than any actual attraction to such images. Of course, I don't think younger children have as much disposable income to puchase these games directly, but their parents probably do.
    • by p0tat03 (985078)
      The problem I have with this is that some of the best films of our time have not been rated R, and in fact many were PG, or at most PG-13. Hollywood doesn't seem to have a problem with making great films without decapitating someone. So why is it that the game industry, and gamers, feel the need to make bloody, violent messes in order for a game to even be good?
      • by Protoslo (752870)
        Perhaps because many of the best films of our time were released when the only choices were 'PG' and 'G'? The canonical example, I think, would be The Graduate, which was rated 'PG' when released, and very recently was re-released as a 40th anniversary edition, earning an 'R' this time around.
      • by Kymri (1093149)
        Because many games focus around conflict (if not outright combat, though that's clearly quite popular), and conflict and combat can get messy. Hollywood is less-inclined towards outright violence, but a character-and-dialogue driven drama that can work very well on the big screen (Clerks wouldn't make a very good game without throwing in stuff that wasn't much in the film for obvious gameplay needs, just as one quick off-the-top-of-my-head example).

        Of course, there are great games without that level of vio
      • by CastrTroy (595695)
        Great films span all ratings levels. If you look at the critically acclaimed movies, you'll find stuff like Wizard of Oz and Snow white, all the way up to Full Metal Jacket and Eyes Wide Shut. If you look at critically acclaimed games, you'll find the same thing. Very tame games like PacMan, Mario, and Tetris, all the way up to Quake, and Rainbow Six. On the other side of the coin, ask someone what their favourite movie of last 3 years was. It most of the time won't be something critically acclaimed, b
    • by MBGMorden (803437)
      You bring up a good point about preferring mature content. I'm now 25. Nintendo generation grown up. I still like gaming, but certain stuff I once would have played isn't appealing anymore.

      Now, it's NOT that I like blood and gore. Overall, I'd rather prefer that it's NOT in a game. I also don't need girl's bouncing around with obviously unnaturally exaggerated anatomies. But when I plug in the latest and greatest RPG and am faced with talking cats, 15 year olds with super powers saving the world, and
    • Take a look at THQ. They are the new Acclaim. Most of their games are shovelware, and they are mostly rated 'E.' Publishers put effort in "mature" games because they think they will sell. Yes, there are plenty of shitty "mature" games, but if a publisher is more willing to pay for shiny graphics and comprehensive marketing for those games, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy.
    • Not to mention those young children probably don't have the money to buy many games at $50-60 a pop. It's a prohibitive price to buy new when you are on a $5-10 a week allowance. The only some kid is going to be able to afford it is if they work at least a minimum wage job that pays more like $200-400 week, and that pretty much precludes anyone under 16 years of age in the U.S. market.
  • Duh! (Score:4, Funny)

    by Duffy13 (1135411) on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @11:40AM (#20554627)
    Everyone knows it's because us gamers are all violent killers who need our training to follow the orders of the internet hate machine.

    Jack Thompson is gonna have a busy week spewing BS.
  • have more money than people younger than 17. Kids 14, 15, and early 16 probably only have an income of allowance or an income of nothing. Kids younger than that probably only get games when their parents buy games for them. People aged late 16, 17 and 18 are starting their first jobs, but their still young enough not to have responsibility like paying for food, so they spend it on what they like.
    • by njfuzzy (734116)
      Obviously adults have more income-- however, young adults (high school and college age) often have 100% discretionary income. Sure, that kid only has allowance-- but she can spend all of it on things that are purely for fun. I'm not just talking about proportion, either-- in college I had far more "fun" money than I do now, gainfully employed in the tech sector at age 29.
  • Despite online connectivity being a marketing cornerstone for all new consoles, the study concluded that 45 percent of retail games are not utilizing it in any way -- 98 percent of Nintendo Wii games have no online functionality at all.

    Can't speak for next-gen consoles but my limited experience of PC online gaming was a complete let down. The major reason being that the team deathmatch type games are really teamy at all.

    You start the game and everyone runs off in different directions - the only thing th

    • by Pojut (1027544)
      Sounds to me like you should look into joining a clan...TFC (Team Fortress Classic) and CS: Source are quite popular, you could find a clan rather easily for either of those.
      • by Abcd1234 (188840)
        Yeah, I spent a lot of time in my youth playing TFC (well, TF on the Quake engine, but...). Truly a *great* game, and there was a very strong element of team play necessary if you wanted to succeed.
      • by pokerdad (1124121)

        Sounds to me like you should look into joining a clan...

        The thing is that not all of us are so inclined. And while the existence of clans has created a great environment for those who choose to participate in them, for those of us who do not it makes the online component of many games worthless; what team of random strangers stands a chance against an organised clan, regardless of the game?

        This has led to many people like me totally abandoning online gaming, even though it should be something I like.

    • by vimh42 (981236)
      You apparently never played on a team. Yeah, you've just described your general "team" play, but that doesn't mean teamwork doesn't exist. If you just join a random group of people, it's difficult to get any teamwork going, mostly because there is nobody to organize them. And since you used paintball as an example, I've played a few games, the majority of the time it's just like on-line "team" play. Just a bunch of chaos. But if you manage to communicate with people, you have a better chance actual teamwo
  • by sbate (916441) on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @11:51AM (#20554829)
    My wife says they should be rated IM for immature.
  • Ok .. this is supposed to be a shock?

    Let's name off a few "big-seller" franchises:
    Xbox360 - Gears of War, Halo, Bioshock, Crackdown
    PS3 - Resistance, Lair (yea they didn't sell, but bear with me)
    Wii - Mario, Zelda, Metroid

    Aside from Nintendo 1st-party, almost every big-selling has been rated M. Also, look at marketing dollars, most all spent on M-rated games. Microsoft and Sony push M-rated titles, publishers push M-rated titles, so that's what sells.

    The only franchises that sell that aren't M-rat
    • by random256 (676708)
      Just to pop your bubble real fast, you seem to forget that some of the biggest and fastest selling titles are sports and racing games. Y'know, which aren't M rated. And which are heavily marketed.
    • Okay you obviously know nothing about PS3 sales. Lair didn't sell (it's been out two weeks, for chrissakes). Best sellers are Resistance and Motorstorm [vgchartz.com], both of which have been out a lot longer. Oh, and they did sell - in fact Resistance would have placed 7th on the Xbox 360 list, just above Madden '07 and Motorstorm would be in the top 20 for worldwide 360 sales [vgchartz.com], which for a console that has been out one year less isn't that bad.
    • by p0tat03 (985078)
      60% in your world maybe. Keep in mind that the most successful gaming franchise of *all time* is rated E (I am, of course, talking about The Sims). That one series has kicked the collective asses of your 3 M-rated successful franchises...
  • It's because games which are awesome tend to (coincidentally?) be M-rated. At least in some genres. FPS comes to mind.

    I say that the industry is failing to exploit the biggest strength of a video game - on the fly decision making. Most games could support a variable level of sex, or gore, or profanity, or whatever without a lot of additional effort.

    Yes, sometimes it's an integral part of the gameplay, but just as often it's not. I say that for every game where turning off decapitation would scr
    • by CastrTroy (595695)
      The only problem I see with that is that if the textures are on the disk, then someone is going to find them, find a way to unlock them, and then the game production company gets in a lot of trouble for releasing AO content in a T rated game. For more info, see the Hot Coffee Mod [wikipedia.org]. What they would have to do, is release different disks with completely different content. It would still be possible, but might be a little more difficult.
  • M vs. PG13 (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Alzheimers (467217) on Tuesday September 11, 2007 @12:29PM (#20555539)
    How many "M" games with the gameplay removed would be rated "PG13" vs. "R" for a movie (machinima)? (hint) [imdb.com]

    Similarly, how many "R" movies, with the addition of the simple mechanic of "Press A to continue", would be reclassified as "AO" rather than "M"?

    The problem with Standards is that everybody has their own.
    • That is true enough. Without being able to get to your link (at work) I sat and thought about it. The fact is that such family classics as The Bad News Bears (1976) would get an M rating by the ESRB if it were a video game. Look at it:

      1. Smoking
      2. Drinking
      3. Underage drinking
      4. Mild violence
      5. Mild racism
      6. Suggestive themes

      And for the love of God that film has a scene with an eight year old boy in his underwear!

      The ESRB would have a field day with this movie. The MPAA should have made this at least rate
      • I caught 'Time Bandits' on HDNet the other and stopped because I vaguely remembered watching it when I was young. It's a pretty bad movie, but I finished it since it was almost over. I was shocked when they kill the main character's parents with an exploding chunk of evil at the end of the movie. I'm guessing that there's quite a bit of content that we just don't remember.
    • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      "Rated PG-13 for non-stop martial arts action"

      The MPAA is SO professional.
  • The ESRB rating system is fundamentally flawed. Essentially, the "E" rating is given to mostly sports games, and games like Mario Party that are aimed at all audiences. "E-10+" covers very few games, mostly those "E" games that want to slip in a swear word or two for shock value. "T" gets a bit more use, as it covers fantasy games with violence, and a few other games (Tony Hawk, Sims) with a bit harsher language or some barely sexual content. "M" covers most successful games, because almost all FPS game
  • Here is the link to the actual study [eedar.com]. I found it through Gamepolitics [gamepolitics.com], which has its own analysis.
  • Spin: This proves that kids are getting their hands on M-rated games, and we must fight to push these bills that classify video-games in the same camp as pornography!

    Spin: Well, duh, studies have also shown that the vast majority of gamers are adults, and that the average age of gamers continues to rise. It isn't shocking that adult gamers might purchase content catered to a mature audience.

    Spin: In addition to trying to get Bush to testify, Thompson will now subpoena The Pope, Nolan Bushnell, and Big Bird

1 + 1 = 3, for large values of 1.

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