MS: New ratings might make games more costly

Written by Joe Martin

June 30, 2008 | 11:17

Tags: #byron #cost #esrb #ratings

Companies: #bbfc #microsoft #pegi

Microsoft executive Neil Thompson has voiced concerns recently that the proposed changes to the UK ratings systems put forward in the Byron report may end up making computer games in the UK more expensive.

"We're in the business of providing great games to a broad audience of gamers, and we need to be able to fulfill that role by getting products to consumers quickly and at a good price," he told GI.biz.

"We're concerned with any measures that would mean this process is made more unwieldy, or incurs additional costs which have to be shared with the consumer."

Although Dr Byron suggested in her government commissioned report that games should adopt a new rating system where any game rated 12+ by the opt-in PEGI standard should be re-rated by the governmental body the BBFC, Microsoft is cautious about such a change. At the moment only games rated as 15+ are examined by the BBFC.

"We want a steady stream of product to consumers via retail and therefore support PEGI as the single ratings system in the UK," said Thompson. "That way, we're able to ensure the right content goes to the right audience, as efficiently as possible."

The comment comes shortly after EA;s Keith Ramsdale voice similar worries that the proposed system could slow down UK releases.

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