Adult game titles are video games that contain significant amounts of sexual content, making them suitable for play only by adults or those aged 18 and up. The sexual content, however, is not just the basis for a video game to be classified as an adult game. Video game classification and regulatory boards also look at the amount and degree of violence depicted in a video game before they classify it as an adult game.
There has been much controversy surrounding video game ratings, as these determine what adult game titles will be available for sale in specific regions. Gamers are generally against adult game ratings ; according to them, such ratings curtail their right to choose which games they can play. Issues of freedom of creative expression and freedom of choice are often brought up when the topic of adult game ratings are being discussed.
Adult game ratings and restrictions in Australia
In North America, the Entertainment Software Regulatory Board or ESRB is the official body that issues ratings on video games released in the region. But in Australia, the Office of Film and Literature Classification or OFLC is the authoritative body on publishing official ratings for video games. Australia has long been on the map of the videogaming industry because of its history of having strict adult game ratings and restrictions.
One of the contentions in adult game ratings and restrictions in Australia is the fact that the country doesn't have video game ratings higher than MA 15+ (not suitable for users under 15 years old). This means that once OFLC deems a video game as an adult game title (not suitable for Australians aged 15-18), the said "adult game title" will immediately fall under the Refused Classification category. Once that adult game title is given the RC or Refused Classification rating, it will be banned for hire, sale, distribution and importation into Australia. Those caught buying, selling or in possession of adult game titles with RC rating will be fined and/or required to serve time in jail.
Adult game titles banned in Australia
Some of the titles branded by the OFLC as adult game titles include Fallout 3, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, 7 Sins, Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude, Manhunt, Manhunt 2 and Reservoir Dogs. Some games classified by OFLC as adult game titles are allowed for release in the country, so long as they are reworked to remove sexual and violent content.