R18+ Legislation Passes Parliament

Progress on the R18+ rating front overnight, and it's worth getting excited about. Minister for Home Affairs Jason Clare announced last night that the legislation for an R18+ rating for video games had passed the Parliament successfully.

Mark over at Kotaku writes that the states now have to implement complimentary legislation in their respective parliaments. If that's wholly successful, we can expect our first R18+ ratings in Australia by January 1, 2013. It's a wonder anything gets done, as Jason Clare himself noted saying that the legislation was "over 10 years in the making". And not a moment too soon, Minister. [Kotaku Australia]


    Won't somebody PLEASE think of the children?

      Thinking of the children comes under the heading of "parental responsibility". I'm sick of being told I can't play a particular game, legally, because other people are bad parents and allow their children to play them.

        Simpsons quote = sarcastic comment

          It's amazing how many people missed that

      Troll. State level laws regarding the R rating will aim to prevent the sale of R and M rated to persons under the age limit. The parents, as it has always in the past still have the power to give their child the M or R rated game, but now those games that should have been rated R will not be shoe-horned into M.

      When thinking of the children R18 games are theleast if your worries. Implementing R18 legislation aims to bypass the very easy way if importing illegal games into Australia and puts the ownus on the parents and shopkeepers to be responsible adults. If you want to worry about the children worry about easily accessable pornographic material and predators in the internet and the potential for them to get their hands on more harmful things such as cigarettes, drugs and alcohol. Get out of your box and understand the progressive nature of passing this legislation.

    They have, hence why an 18+ rating is coming.

    Do they really think that the pimply 15 year old at the game shop is going to tell the pimply 16 year old that he is not allowed to buy a game because it is rated R18+

      Do you really think he'd like losing his job and a rather large chunk of money? Besides its not really their job to stop people getting access too them.

        In fact it is their job to stop people getting access to them, that's part of the responsibility of working in a shop that sells restricted products, the same as selling cigarettes really, or R rated movies, the difference is that R18+ games are generally targeted at children because that's who are mostly interested in them. Most people over that age don't care if you see pieces of brain running down your screen or if the woman you are shooting is naked because we are more interested in decent game play than irrelevant gratuitous graphics and explicit language.

          @Steve - This argument is long dead... We have had R18+ movies for many years and the cases where these films have been sold to minors are small. Shop owners are bound by law as are the sales clerks. Failure to comply results in anything from massive fines (for each offense no less) and loss of license.

          As for targeting adult games at kids... Really!? Did someone replace the team from left for dead with the boy band one direction? Has the role of Niko Bellic suddenly been replaced by Justin Bieber?

          Understand the difference between content that is targeted at kids and adult content that may appeal to both adults (the people who should be free to enjoy it) and children (the ones that are not ready for this content).

          I wonder if there is a way that we could only make this content available to adults and yet somehow restrict it from children?

            @David, the statement was more a response to Tom saying it was not the sails persons job to stop the minors getting access to the games, and as for the argument being long dead, I think that the only thing long dead are the poor innocent souls of the children killed in school shootings such as Columbine and the others since after the children have watched movies or played games that were not suitable for them. I agree this content should not be restricted from those old enough to view it in a mature way, but how do we police it? When I see my kids pretending to shoot people, and they don't play those games, it makes my heart sink.

              Not sure if troll or seriously thinks videogame and movie violence caused a person to kill a bunch of other people, if former well played, if latter well there is something mentally wrong with a person who commits murder for the fun of it, I would have been 10 or 11 when i first got my hands on GTA3 and i didn't end up going around shooting a bunch of hookers. id go on a full blown rant but i have to get back to work at my stable full time job that pays well even though i played gta3 and other violent games as a child and should be socially incapable of serving society according to you

              Steve. I hear your concerns about what video games might do to children. BUT, I think it lies with the parents. And only the parents. If you have raised your kids well enough to have them think that a computer game is just that, a computer game (and not a reflection of how things work in the real world), then you should feel comfortable in their understanding of the content. If you think your kids are going to take the game's actions literally, DON'T LET THEM PLAY IT! Your kids don't tell YOU what to do. YOU tell them. I watched Braveheart and Rob Roy when I was 10 or 11 (can't remember) and I played Doom when i was about the same age. I also managed to get my hands on Leisure Suit Larry at some point. My parents knew I was subject to these things and I can clearly remember them talking to me about the content. Did it make me a violent, sex craved, pychopathic murderer. No. And that's because my PARENTS were there to put it all into appropriate context. If any parent out there thinks that this is going to change their children's behaviour to a degree that they commit crimes / murder, then that parent needs educating on how to communicate with their kids.

              And just on the matter of selling games to kids, I do think it is the resonsibility of the sales person to think twice on selling an R18+ game to a kid without ID. Alcohol? Tobacco? Same principle. I also think it is the parents' responsiblity to take note of what their kids are playing. If it's inappropriate either A) explain to them that they are not old enough to play the game or B) Explain the content to them so they realise that the actions in the game do not reflect real life and should not be taken literally.


          There's a good chance that a pimply 15 year old will be unable to sell an R18+ game to a pimply 16 year old, just like a pimply 15 year old can't sell you a drink in a pub, but they can serve you food.

      Do you think he will keep his job if he did? And I have never been served by a under 17 year old at EB.

    Will this impact mobile app stores?
    If yes, how much will it cost devlepers to get a rating?
    Will we see less gaming apps in australia?

    Legislation takes far too long! I've been downloading banned games for over a decade now. Australian leaders should be ashamed of themselves. This was a no brainer and should have been put in place when the original ratings legislation was drafted.
    Special mention to the complete wanker Michael Atkinson who wasted millions of Austrlaian Tax payers dollars during his attempts to big name himself in turn delaying the release of this common sense legislation. Michael Atkinson, you can kiss my hairy man arse.

    This is great news, I mean, I'm only 16 but when the times comes around that I want to buy an R rated game, it's nice to know it's there and available and not because of people like Michael Atkinson who stopped it for so many years.

    This will be a slippery slope for sure. Like Saudi Arabia who have rightly predicted that if women are allowed to drive, there will be no more virgins in the country. I can't take that risk! I won't take that risk and I can't take that risk!

    Throwing money at politicians to stall talks HO!

    Believe it or not this actualy going to bad for games, many games that would have been MA15+ will now be bumped up to R,publishers like movie studios will self censor to ge the M rating to widen their audience and lets not forget games can still be refused classifcation outright.

      Nonsense. The games aren't made for this market. In the past, many developers have simply not bothered to release here because editing is too expensive.

        Uh, wtf. Developers have nothing to do with what markets a game is released in.

      Not entirely true, the majority of gaming consumers these days are on average at least 25 years of age. With the MA 15+ rating a lot of publishers have had to remove large amounts if content to allow the games into the county and a number of the larger publishers are simply refusing to change the content and don't release the game in the country in question. A large number of countries have had an R 18 rating for years and the industry hasn't suffered, the majority of games released as MA 15+ in Australia tend to be R 18 in countries like the US and Germany. If anything this will inrich the gaming community.

    10 years in the making... carbon tax ... prob 6 months.... go figure!

    So, what sort of person is it that wants to play this sort of game?

    Finally! Can't wait.

    Though some poxy extreme lobby group will do their best to overturn this legislation...

      I really hope they now release a GOTYE of Left 4 Dead 2 with all the content back in that would be the ducks nuts!!!!!!

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