Games News

2013: April-June

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Hoards of Zombie Censors...

Australia's advert censor bans TV trailer for video game Dead Island Riptide

Link Here 30th May 2013

A TV advertisement for the zombie game sequel Dead Island: Riptide has been banned by Australia's advert censor.

The ad, plucked from the game's opening cinematic features a young couple choosing to blow themselves up rather than face the zombie hoard.

According to Australian website Mumbrella claimed:

The ad is too graphic in terms of its depiction of suicide, particularly the final image of the man hanging from a tree because it may be very traumatic for those who have lost a family member to suicide.

The Advertising Standards Board upheld the complaints, claiming the issue of suicide is a very significant community concern and (the Board) considered that the use of images which are strongly suggestive of suicide is not appropriate in the context of a television advertisement for a computer game.



Yes, It's Called Adrenalin...

Study finds that teenagers playing Manhunt for long periods leads to a lack of sleep

Link Here 11th May 2013

The Effect of Violent and Nonviolent Video Games on Heart Rate Variability, Sleep, and Emotions in Adolescents With Different Violent Gaming Habits

By Malena Ivarsson, BA, Martin Anderson, MD, Torbjorn Akerstedt, PhD and Frank Lindblad, MD


Objective To study cardiac, sleep-related, and emotional reactions to playing violent games versus nonviolent video games  in adolescents with different gaming habits.

Methods Thirty boys (aged 13--16 years), half of them low-exposed (1 hour/day) and half high-exposed (3 hour/day) to violent games, played a violent games/nonviolent video games for 2 hours during two different evenings in their homes. Heart rate and heart rate variability were registered from before start until next morning. A questionnaire about emotional reactions was administered after gaming sessions and a sleep diary on the following mornings.

Results During sleep, there were significant interaction effects between group and gaming condition for heart rate. There was also a significant interaction for sleep quality, and sadness after playing.

Conclusions Different combinations of the extent of previous violent games and experimental exposure to a violent games or an nonviolent video games are associated with different reaction patterns---physiologically, emotionally, and sleep related. Desensitizing effects or selection bias stand out as possible explanations.



Update: Immature Legislation...

New Jersey Lawmaker proposes law to ban 17 year olds from buying 17 rated games

Link Here 8th May 2013
Full story: Newtown School Killings...Gun lobby vs violent media

New jersey State Assemblyman Sean Kean has introduced two bills that stem from reports that Adam Lanza, the 20-year-old shooter behind the Dec. 14 Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Newtown, Conn, owned some violent video games, including games that carried a '17' rating, mature.

Kean's legislation would restrict the sale of video games rated mature or adults only to minors.

Officials in several states have attempted to pass laws that would prohibit the sale of certain video games to minors, but none have succeeded. Citing First Amendment protections.

The first bill proposed by Kean would prohibit retailers from selling video games that are rated mature or adults only to anyone under 18. The second would require the presence of a parent for a minor to purchase a violent video game.

Any retailer found to be in violation of either bill would be subject to a $10,000 fine for the first offense and up to $20,000 for each subsequent instance; be forced to cover any punitive damages to the minor who purchased the game; and could be on the receiving end of a cease-and-desist order from the state Attorney General's Office.

Though both of Kean's pending bills are currently backed by a small cadre of Republicans. Assembly members from the other side of the aisle have also taken on the violent video game debate. Democratic Assemblywoman Linda Stender (Union) is preparing a bill that would ban violent video games from public places such as arcades.



Will Child Protection Requirements Lead to More Adults Only Spaces?...

Playstation Network to be restricted to credit card carrying adults in South Korea

Link Here 4th May 2013

Last year, a law was passed in South Korea to prevent gamers under sixteen from gaming during a six-hour block at night. A year later, the consequences are expanding.

When the law went into effect July 1, 2012, Sony temporarily took down the PSN Store. Sony had hoped to get it back up sometime later in 2012, because it needed to revamp the PSN to comply with the new law. That apparently meant that there were no new PSN games and no other downloadable content during this blackout.

This week, Sony Computer Entertainment Korea announced that the PSN is finally returning to South Korea starting May 16. However, people under the age of 18 will not be able to use the PlayStation Network at all.

According to Sony's South Korean arm, it was difficult for them to come up with a system that could limit game play time for minors as well as a system to verify parental permission. Thus, the PSN in South Korea will soon be ages 18 and up only as verified via a credit card.



Offsite Article: Violence and guns in best-selling video games...

Link Here 1st May 2013
Pretty diagrams show that about half have some violent content noted in ESRB ratings

See article from


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