Here is another news article that I found regarding the Grand Theft Hypocrisy of the gaming industry. It turns out that Rockstar has decided to manufacture an M rating of the game after all and hopefully it will be in stores soon.

Take that Hillary!

‘Explicit game’ to be modified
22/07/2005 11:56 – (SA)

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San Francisco – The maker of the cult video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas said on Thursday it had stopped production of the game after a ratings board ruled its sexy content meant it should be sold only to adults.

The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) slapped an adults-only label on the game because a software modification called Hot Coffee, available on the Internet, allowed players to view graphic levels of sex, violence and drug use, the board said.

Making a more suitable game

“Rockstar Games has ceased manufacturing of the current version of the title and will begin working on a version of the game with enhanced security to prevent the Hot Coffee modifications,” the firm stated on the website of its subsidiary, Take-Two Interactive.

“Rockstar Games will be providing adults-only labels for retailers who wish to continue to sell the current version of the title,” the New York City-based software maker added.

Grand Theft Auto features graphic designs that allow users to play the parts of street gang characters carrying out robberies, car hi-jackings, shootings and other nefarious deeds to earn points.

It sold a whopping 5.1 million units last year, making it the top selling video game in the $10bn a year United States games market.

Its new adults-only rating will significantly limit its sales to the lucrative youth market.

Controversial scenes to be deleted

Rockstar has told the board the controversial scenes were never intended for game users and it will delete the coding from the programming, said ESRB president Patricia Vance.

Rockstar said the modified game will be crafted to regain the “M”, mature content, rating the board stripped it of this week.

“If they do intend to sell the product as an ‘M’ product, they must delete the content from the disk and assure us there is nothing left a hacker could access,” said Vance.

The “mod”, or modification, that unlocked sex scenes in Grand Theft Auto software showed the risk gamers take when writing around or encoding unwanted programming instead of deleting it, according to Vance.

“This is software, not like a film where your edits are left on the cutting room floor,” Vance said. “Leaving things on a disk you don’t intend for game play is risky.”

The ESRB “has no reason to suspect” that Rockstar left the nasty secret scenes on the disks as a treat for savvy players, Vance said.

“There is no incentive for a publisher to hide content from the ESRB,” Vance said. “Because, we will find it.”

In the recent case, Vance pointed out, the scenes in Grand Theft Auto became a controversial issue after a hacker posted the access key on the Internet.

Rockstar will offer a free software patch for parents or others who want to block the unauthorised game scenes from being accessed.

The company predicted interrupting production of the Grand Theft Auto game and modifying the software will cost the company millions of dollars.

http://www.news24.com/News24/Technology/News/0,,2-13-1443_1741761,00.html

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