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Australian govt backs 18 rating for games

Minster for Home Affairs pushes for adult labels ahead of decision on Friday

Australia's government is backing the introduction of an R18+ rating for adult games in the region.

Backed by the Minster for Home Affairs and Justice Brendan O'Connor, the announcement comes ahead of a Standing Committee of Attorneys General meeting on Friday, where classification ministers will make a decision on the issue.

"We want to provide better guidance for parents and remove unsuitable material from children and teenagers. The introduction of an R18+ classification will help achieve that," commented O'Connor.

"We believe that this is the right decision for Australian families and the right decision for parents who want to be able to make informed choices about the games their children play."

"Children and teenagers shouldn't be exposed to the gratuitous sex, violence and adult themes that are contained in some computer games," he added.

Some games released as MA 15+ in the region could be reclassified, said O'Connor, and titles that are currently unclassified will be reassessed - but may still be refused classification should they not meet new criteria.

The Standing Committee of Attorneys General also commissioned a national survey on ratings in Australia, which found that 80 per cent of the 2226 people contacted supported an R18+ classification.

Australia does not have a rating higher than MA15+, leaving many titles from hit franchises unable to get an official release in the country.

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Matt Martin


Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.