Bully's boy-on-boy scenes causing a stir
Rockstar's latest lets players experiment with same-sex make-out sessions; ESRB says that content was considered in assigning the game a T-for-Teen rating.
Rockstar Games' Bully has been the subject of controversy since it was first announced more than a year ago. The game shipped to retail last week after a failed 11th-hour attempt by Florida lawyer Jack Thompson to have it banned.
However, the controversy surrounding the game might not be over with just yet. In navigating the angst-filled halls of Bullworth Academy as 15-year-old Jimmy Hopkins, players can participate in some extracurricular tonsil hockey with significant others. But while these significant others are typically female, there's at least one other boy in the game whom Jimmy can successfully court, as documented by this in-game video from GameBrink.
The Entertainment Software Rating Board surprised some people last month when it issued a T-for-Teen rating for the game. The content descriptors listed for the game on the ESRB's Web site are crude humor, language, use of alcohol and tobacco, violence, and sexual themes. When asked about the boy-on-boy make-out sessions, the ESRB told GameSpot, "That content was considered in the assignment of the rating."
Thompson addressed ESRB president Patricia Vance in an e-mail he claimed to have sent to "every major news organization in America and the UK," as well as a host of lawmakers and industry representatives.
"Dear Ms. Vance," Thompson wrote, "We just found gay sexual content in Bully, as Jimmy Hopkins makes out with another male student. Good luck with your 'Teen' rating now, Patty."
A representative from Bully publisher Take-Two had not responded to a request for comment as of press time.