We Dare remains PG in Australia

[UPDATE] Ubisoft's adult party game for the Wii keeps its original classification of PG after undergoing a classification review this week following an appeal from Federal Minister for Home Affairs.

The Classification Review Board has announced it will not alter the classification of Ubisoft's We Dare, a game that was initially rated PG (Parental Guidance) in February and received heavy criticism for its inclusion of adult content.

Earlier this month, the Board announced it would rethink the PG rating following an application lodged by Federal Minister for Home Affairs Brendan O'Connor. Yesterday, a three-member panel of the Classification Review Board unanimously agreed that the PG rating of the game should not be made higher, also retaining the consumer advice of "mild sexual references".

According to the Board, material classified PG may contain material "which some children find confusing or upsetting, and may require the guidance of parents or guardians." The Board's decision was based upon the fact that while the game encourages certain behaviour, there are no actual sexual references in the gameplay itself.

"This game contains a series of mini games which provide a single player (or a multiple of players up to four) with a variety of tasks. These mini games, which are randomly available to players based on a choice of 'moods', include dance moves and activities, which may require interaction with other players. There are no sexual references in actual game play. Text boxes, which contain miscellaneous facts about gender differences and interactions, randomly appear whilst a mini game is loading. Some of those text boxes contain mild sexual references. The text boxes contain no interactive elements."

"In the Review Board’s opinion the overall impact of this element does not exceed mild."

The Classification Board fell under fire in March over its decision to give the Ubisoft-published adult party game We Dare a PG rating for "mild sexual references." A number of early media reports blamed the board for inappropriately rating the game, which revolves around a number of sexually themed party minigames that ask players to simulate sexual behaviour such as kissing, spanking, and stripping.

The game also caused controversy in the UK, where it was given a 12+ rating by the Pan European Game Information (PEGI) ratings board. According to media reports, some British parents opposed the game's encouragement of sexual actions and deemed it unsuitable for teenagers.

The Board rated We Dare PG, ignoring Ubisoft's initial advice during the application process to give the game an M rating. According to the board's initial report, classifiers did not feel that the game deserved an M rating because there is no sexual behaviour actually displayed in the game and the graphics it contains are "highly stylised and cartoon-like."

"The Board disagrees with the recommended classification of M," the report states. "Given the reasons noted above, the Board is of the opinion the game warrants a PG classification with consumer advice of mild sexual references."

According to the report, it appears the board understood the nature of the gameplay involved. It concluded that it is not recommended for persons under the age of 15 without the supervision of a parent or guardian.

"The game contains mild sexual references that are discreetly implied and justified by the context. There is a sexual tone to the game…In the mini-game "The More You Dare", players are encouraged to remove as many clothes as possible in fifteen seconds…At the beginning of each mini-game, text bubbles appear…examples include but are not limited to: 'Many women prefer men who look like their fathers. This is called sexual imprinting' and 'Married women tend to have affairs when they're unhappy in their relationships.'"

Ubisoft responded to media criticism in March by claiming the game is intended for an adult audience and would be sold with a sticker advising as such.

This is the second time in two weeks the Classification Board of Australia has revised earlier classification decisions pertaining to games. Last week, the board revoked the initial classification of Tecmo Koei's Dead or Alive: Dimensions for the 3DS on the grounds that the contentious content in the game was not shown to the board during the initial application process. The game is currently being reclassified.

Stay tuned to GameSpot AU for more information on both of these stories.

UPDATE: O'Connor has just replied with the following statement, confirming that it was media reports who led him to contact the Classification Board about We Dare:

"I asked the Classification Board to review We Dare following media reports that the game's PG rating may be inappropriate. I believe that this game is unsuitable for children and I look forward to the outcome of the Classification Board's review of its PG rating. I share the concern of many parents that children may be inadvertently playing games that are more suited to adult gamers."

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Discussion

46 comments
superxtreme101
superxtreme101

Screw this game, I'm a teen and I don't care about this crap. What I want is quality first-party games on the Wii, besides this game is probably going to suck anyways. I know some cheeky monkeys are gonna enjoy this though

Angel_Belial
Angel_Belial

'Many women prefer men who look like their fathers. This is called sexual imprinting' Yeah, just what we should be teaching young children - sexualised Freudian nonsense. This tripe should be MA15+, what a joke is PG...even many British didn't like it getting a 12+ in their neck of the woods, and PG here is basically the same as G (all ages), only they recommend having a parent there for 'guidance'.Oh well, what can you expect when you see children watching what is basically porn/soft porn on MTV all the time. It's time to take a stand against this crap, and let children be children again.

majere613
majere613

Presumably if Ubisoft wanted an M-Rating, they should have called it "Chasey Laine's We Dare" and illustrated the mini-games with 'diagrams'.

xcollector
xcollector

This might be a first. Australia is known for banning almost any mature adult game that is made and then they give this adult oriented game a PG (Parental Guidance) rating. And for some reason an Australian rated PG game is not appropriate for the mature North American audience? The sad thing is all the crazy actions the game will tell you to do can be accomplished by simply flicking your wrist because we all know how accurate the wii's motion control is. Might as well just forget the wii-mote and do it for real.

Henrique2324
Henrique2324

Why the hell would a kid buy a s*** game like this one anyway?

King-gamer
King-gamer

Looks like lots of people are forgetting that there is also a PS3 version... -_-

Super-Poke-Bros
Super-Poke-Bros

@rasputin177 Seriously, I'm not saying that every game with little "sexual refrences" should be beaten down, but there's has to be a limit...If everything is okay like that in a few more decades the limit might just decrease to the point where there it's okay to be naked in public...It's not ignorance...there has to be some borders between what is and what isn't appropriate. "...such as kissing, spanking, stripping"...what the heck :? is that really PG?

Super-Poke-Bros
Super-Poke-Bros

How is it that Australia doesn't have an M/17+/18+ rating? It would be a lot easier than banning a bunch of games, and you can't complain that the game is bad for little kids, because it will say so right on the box. If you have an 8 year old kid, you wouldn't give him a game with that kind of rating, would you?

DeadrisingX1
DeadrisingX1

Just saw the trailer off of IGN... What the F*** was that???

DeadrisingX1
DeadrisingX1

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

rasputin177
rasputin177

Wow this thread is filled with ignorance. Another example of extreme violence being fine but a hint of sexuality is still dealt with as if we are in the dark ages.

jimmyzeke13
jimmyzeke13

Yeah, 'cuz when I look for a naughty good time, I think Nintendo wii.

hella_epic
hella_epic

teens who own a WII r gnna have a blast even though this will suck................

dstv
dstv

Adult party game for the wii.....lol....nice joke now whats the game really about ?

Freezezzy
Freezezzy

Wait a minute... did I just see the words "adult party game" and "Wii" in the same sentence? Wow. Just... wow.

EggVillain
EggVillain

'Many women prefer men who look like their fathers. This is called sexual imprinting' WTF! This part of Freud's theory has been voided for many years now...

covertgamer78
covertgamer78

@Jody R Please review this game ASAP. I am available for extended QA sessions. We will need to play this game nonstop 24/7 to make sure there are no bugs. :D

ANUBISZER0
ANUBISZER0

An adult party game for the Wii? Perhaps only adult's should play it then.

g1rldraco7
g1rldraco7

This is sooo wrong. Who's the genius that made this filth?

Death_Blade_182
Death_Blade_182

"Adult party game for the Wii"? ... Does not compute.

xxxKONVICTEDxxx
xxxKONVICTEDxxx

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Smokescreened84
Smokescreened84

@cjf187x - COD and GTA are marketed to adults, with the real intention of attracting the teen market. I feel that parents should be educated about video games and about the reason for age ratings, why they're needed and why they shouldn't just buy some adult age rated game for their child because of a very outdated notion. Picture yourself as a teen, you see the advert for this game and although it shows adults playing it, as a teen you would be curious because it shows adult behaviours and actions. As a teen you would want to understand those actions because your developing body and hormone surges as you're becoming an adult would be stimulating your developing body, and seeing this game with ti's adult rated content would cause an act of rebellion because it would be forbidden, and teens tend to ignore the concept of forbidden. The game has been marketed towards adults, aye, as was COD and GTA and other adult rated games, but the chances are it won't just be adults who will play it. Age ratings are used as a smoke screen to not teach parents about the purpose and reason for age ratings on video games, and many parents ignore age ratings. Maybe in giving this game the intendd age rating, consideration from governing bodies should be in teaching parents about reading age ratings and understanding why they shouldn't buy a game for their child if the child is younger than the intended age group.

Xplode_77
Xplode_77

Either way the game is still going to suck.

cjf187x
cjf187x

@Smokescreened84 I agree. However, games are given a Mature rating so that teenagers can't buy them because they have adult content, simulation or otherwise. If parents believe that their child is mature enough to play the game then let them buy it for them. I think that the nature channel is one thing. I remember when Playboy the Mansion came out, that game had cartoonish graphics and semi-naked women, yet it was given an M-rating. There was no simulated groping of real people. I don't think games should be banned, but I think that the people actually rating the games should maybe know what they are doing and give proper ratings for the games. I will reiterate, a game should be given a proper rating and the parents can decide when the child says "Daddy can I get it?" Even Ubisoft said the game should be given a M-rating, how many developers will say that. Furthermore, if you've seen the advert for this game, they are advertising it to adults not children.

Smokescreened84
Smokescreened84

The sad thing is that, as Ricardo has said, is that the ones who are most likely to play the game will be teenagers and pre-teens. Take most of Rockstar's games and COD for example, those games may have the M/18 age rating to indicate they are for adults, but parents will still buy the game for their child because of the misconception that only children and teens play video games. An age rating never helps, as long as the misconception that video games are only for children and teens continues then children and teens will continue to get access to games they really shouldn't be playing at all. And this game will likely be one of those games. I'm sure many of the older male members of this site when they were teens would sneak a peek at some porn mag and X-rated movie because they believed it was the thing to do, and because they were curious and wanting to see a woman's body. Children and teens are naturally very curious about things and they'll get their hands on anything that may make them appear mature and grown up in the eyes of their friends. Add that with the misconception there is about video games still being something only under 18s play, then what will an age rating do but make the game desirable to those who are too young to play it? I doubt it will make any difference, sadly.

robertwarnes91
robertwarnes91

Andrew Hansen from the Chaser and Bajo reviewed this game on Good Game last evening. Lets say they successfully made a mockery of the game and showed a condom will cover a Wii remote :D

ricardo-sene
ricardo-sene

Ya know? the commercial shows adults playing the game.. but it will be really sad when younger teens start to make that same kind of play of the video.. . which will be inevitable... since they will be the ones that will play that thing.. thats the great favor Ubisoft is doing to your childrens..

Smokescreened84
Smokescreened84

@cjf187x - No, I wouldn't be, although I'm not a parent and can never be one. But as much as a parent will try to protect their children from life, eventually the child will find out, they'll learn either by first hand experience, when they're older or by teenage experimenting. An age rating on a game because of some tacky content which doesn't give a very realistic view of what's encountered in real life doesn't solve anything. A game can be banned, but real life can't. And acting like a game will destroy some midguided ideal that life is perfect and everything is like a fairy tale is little more than sticking the head in the sand. Children learn, no matter how we may wish to protect them from what they'll end up learning.

cjf187x
cjf187x

@ Smokescreened84 So you're telling me you'd be alright with your 12 year old (assuming you have a daughter), grinding on one of her guy friends like a stripper straddling a pole? Or perhaps you'd be more comfortable with her lying over his lap being spanked... People are dumb. As much as I disagree with it, I see why California wanted to institute that silly law.

mbashour
mbashour

i'll never understand these ratings people. so if it's stylized, cartoon sex; that is fine for a kid to watch? i don't think anybody is debating that this should be M. why are they being lax for once? just because it might not show sex, "daring" people to give BJs...well i wouldn't want my 12 year old playing that

jasonzilla11
jasonzilla11

Lol, when the headline said "We Dare Aussie rating," I thought it meant a game so inapproiate that it was going against the aussie rating. XD

rahl247
rahl247

anyone that does not think this does not deserve an M rating clearly has no kids of their own

rahl247
rahl247

then if it was geared 4 the adult audieance they should put an M rating on it. this is just another thing corporations say the right thing but their actions speak louder then what they said.

JoSilver
JoSilver

Ahem..... AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Smokescreened84
Smokescreened84

Sounds like a bunch of prudes who's idea of one of life's most primal biological requirements is more based around the idea of pixie dust and a stork. Teens learn about such things without a game showing them, it's not like they don't experiment. Maybe they should place a rating on real life - 'Warning, may contain acts of nature, cower behind your comfort zones and live a life of little white lies, life is not perfect' Such things in a video game always come across as tacky anyway, hardly anything like real life.

just_for_kicks
just_for_kicks

Gotta be honest, wouldn't let my young kids play this game. I think it does deserve a higher rating.

hippiesanta
hippiesanta

aussie is harsh on videogames but not to bondi beach and mardi gras.....

FlamingFury
FlamingFury

If a game encourages you to strip, you have to take that into context. It all sounds like a big silly game to me though, nothing to worry about.

blasterchief
blasterchief

So basically our board are idiots who don't actually play the games they rate. This isn't really news.

mull20641
mull20641

This is somewhat historic don't you think? I think this is the first time in history where a game has been rated on its control scheme rather than its content.

wellrod
wellrod

I thought this game was a joke...

Ratchet_Fan8
Ratchet_Fan8

ADULT PARY games? erm...just go to some nightclub.. >_>

Krazykraz01
Krazykraz01

"It concluded that it is not recommended for persons under the age of 15 without the supervision of a parent or guardian." Well, THAT would be awkward.

robertwarnes91
robertwarnes91

Remember fokes this has nothing to do with the R18+ rating issue. Althought the boxart alones screams sexual content, so I'll say its the government's fault this time.