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Illusion Space

A highly critical and very mature blog covering a lot of aspects of technology, culture and gaming. ^_^

Author: Shinami

Topic 001 - Age and Responsibility

Posted by Shinami Saturday April 30 2011 at 6:47AM
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Age and Responsibility 


There are many "Video Game Content Rating Systems" and each one of us is familiar with at least one content system. Here is a quick wikipedia page on the matter:


I am actually familiar with ESRB, PEGI and EOCS (Japanese System) and interestingly enough what we find is as follows: 


~Some of these organizations are non-profit and independent.

~Some of these organizations are government controlled and operated.


Regardless the case and status of such organizations operating in your nation or region, they have influence, power and popularity. In short a public agreement for their existence is supported..either at the government level or the local citizen level. 


Ok, so now it is established that a developer must deal with an "outside influence" when developing and attempting to clear these titles in order to obtain the "appropriate" and "targetted" group, not just a "publishing company." 


Now we come across a second part to this problem: Expansion. 


Ever since Forumboards were invented, developers and third parties as well as fan groups made up of players have used them. This adds a new element altogether...addressed below: 


Today we purchase a title and we find the rating on the box to be Adults-Only (18+) or Rated E for Everyone. Now we define two cases: 


Case 1) I am over 21 years of age and purchase a game rated "Adults-Only" and then enter the web-site for the game itself. I am asked to enter my birthdate to view a trailer. I lie and chose to enter my birthdate as January 1st and mark myself as 3 - 5 years older (as I usually do as I feel that giving my real birthdate is a problem). 


I then enter the web-site forum after watching a video intended for 18+. The user agreement clearly states "you must be 13 or older in order to register for this forum" as its a standard agreement on many forumboard packages. I know become part of a community to a game where its ratings board defined it as Adults-Only, but now I must be "Considerate" of Language and Others, as now I am sharing the space with many aged under 18 years of age.


Case 2) I am under 13 years of age and purchase a rated E game. I then enter the company website and proceed to the forumboard. The forumboard states "I must be 13 years or older to register." I know I am not 13, so I lie and state I am 13 years of age and start posting. I now share a forumspace with everyone, looking for threads to help solve my problems and post my own problem. 


Aside from this, we now have services like Steam, Impulse, EADM which make their own communities with game overlays. We are introduced to an environment that further breaks down the age barrier, yet have their own restrictions to age as well. Remember, before these services existed many gamers used instant messengers and even before instant messengers IRC was a center of communication for many gamers...once again with age restrictions and responsibilities. Today they all stack together!


Remember that not all nations have it "Legal" as "Law" for all content to be rated, but the influence is there.


The question(s) asked of you to explore in this topic are as follows: 


Question 1) How do you feel about the existence of video game content systems and their effects on you as the "player?" Do you personaly believe their existence warrants something good, or do you believe their existence is counterproductive?  


Question 2) The proliferation (rapid growth) of communication technologies and gamers have shaken the world and begs to ask if this system can survive such growth and expansion. A question of effectiveness and reasoning comes into play....and ultimately leads us to the central, human -age old question.


"At what point should responsibility come before age?" AND "At what point should AGE come before responsibility?"


The question becomes important as we gamers, while having different goals...use them a lot for recreation and entertainment. We see ourselves dealing with a lot of Intervention and for each intervention affecting us, it does affect the Quality and Cost to a game, which means we as gamers are the ones who will pay for the actions of others, but also reap the rewards of good thought as well. 


Thank you all for reading. ^_^ I look forward to reading your feelings on the issue. 



Illusion Space - Introduction and Purpose

Posted by Shinami Saturday April 30 2011 at 5:47AM
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Welcome to Illusion Space


I had thought of this blog for a long time and wondered what to write about. My approach will be a strong and critical view of topics related to gaming, technology, form and culture. The focus is not to write about things people "Agree" or "Disagree" upon but to represent problems and issues themselves. In short, topics are going to be analytical. You will choose your side and stance and defend it.


You won't choose to "Agree" or "Disagree" with me but bring to the table your experience on the matter. You have the responsibility of not just choosing the angle you represent but also defending it. 


After reading the topic replies (given a certain time range) I will write a conclussion in a new topic made up of your responses. The most analytical will have the greatest weight. Pure Opinions will serve as a measure to write about good testing and research ideas to further develop this topic under your own time. 


In this sense, you all will have your own Illusion Space and become observers as well as players. ^_^