How Would You Change Australia’s Video Game Classification Ratings Rules?

Joining the likes of Fallout 3, Crimecraft and Risen, We Happy Few is the latest victim of the Australian video game classification rating system’s “drug clause”.

As revealed by Kotaku, it was the use of “Joy” as essentially an unavoidable game mechanic that promoted the banhammer. That’s not an R18+ rating, which we fought for years to have – a straight up ban.

I don’t know about you, but it seems weird that I can go to the movies and watch someone get dismembered in Deadpool 2 (it’s not a spoiler, it’s a Deadpool film, don’t yell at me) but this is called out as being something a grown adult shouldn’t be allowed to play:

The player consumes a Joy pill and a swarm of brightly-coloured butterflies appear as well as rainbows and coloured pathways on the ground, improving speed and visibility for the player.

Hmm, sure. Super dangerous. I totally see why you’re protecting me from this, classification rules.

To clarify, this is the clause: “Computer games will be refused classification if they include or contain ‘drug use related to incentives and rewards.”

So to be fair, this ruling is technically a direct result of the board simply following the rules, which prompts the question – do the rules need changing? Should adults be told they can’t play a game where they have to take drugs to play as intended?

What would you change about Australia’s video game ratings system?

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