The dreaded “Adults Only” rating in the world of the ESRB is a death knell for a game… especially a game attempting to go mainstream… especially a game attempting to go mainstream that’s designed by indie developers. Well, Hatred, the perpetually controversial isometric shooter from Destructive Creations, has managed to land an AO rating.
Blues News has a quick rundown of the situation where they explain that Harted has been classified as “Adults Only” in the U.S., by the Electronic Software Ratings Board.
Destructive Creations noted on their own forum board that…
“Well, I’m not quite convinced why Hatred got AO rating while it lacks any sexual content, but it’s still some kind of achievement to have the second game in history getting AO rating for violence and harsh language only. Even if this violence isn’t really that bad and this harsh language isn’t overused,” … “I would prefer to get a standard M+ rating, because with AO we will have problems to to get to consoles in the future, but on the other hand I think you guys (our fans) would be disappointed with it.”
Mature rated games are a dime a dozen on the home consoles, but anything rated AO isn’t even likely to appear through the normal distribution outlets. As they mention, appearing on the Xbox One or PS4 would be problematic.
Games Radar has a list of “Adults Only” games, but they’re mostly all sexually oriented games.
It is strange how Hatred gets the AO rating for violence and language, yet a game like Mortal Kombat X, which shows actual human mutilation in extreme degrees, is still scheduled to appear on the Xbox One and PS4. There’s even a strong likelihood that Mortal Kombat X will be rated ‘M’ for Mature.
Someone has to break down the logic of how showing people being mutilated, ripped apart and x-rays of human insides being shredded, sliced, burned, gouged and broken is less violent than a guy running around shooting and stabbing people?
I’ll be keeping a close eye on Mortal Kombat X and see if the game gets hit with an AO rating, too. Because if one gets it so should the other.