Haha!!! “M” and “A”! What a clever way to frame up a computer gaming story you “CB”

linkbuy.gifSo, anyway, if you read the computer gaming blogs and follow the gaming industry, then you know that Electronic Arts bid something like $40 trillion (that’s 800,000,000 rupees, Legend of Zelda fans) for Take-Two, those fine gentlefolks behind Grand Theft Auto, and publishers of a fun little ditty called BioShock—a game that I really really liked that gave a lot of cynics a lot to gripe about all day on the Internet. Take-Two said no, because they’re releasing GTA IV in about 15 minutes, at which point the value of their stock will catapult into the stratosphere, making the company more valuable than a mountain of pure gold wrapped in a diamond tortilla shell. That’s right, hard-hitting market analysis right here: GTA IV will make Take-Two more valuable than the world’s largest gold-diamond burrito.

burrito.gifSo what am I acting all bratty about? Well, I heard a story on the NPR program Day to Day about the bid on the way to the dentist this afternoon (good news, no cavities). And the whole thing was framed with a silly little bit about how normally M and A [sic] mean “Mature” and “Adults Only” in game-rating parlance, but today they mean “Merger” and “Acquisition.” That’s right, everyone’s favorite murder simulators have grown up! They’re taking time out of corrupting the children to make a shit-pile of money. The whole intro to the story raised my ire, most notably this little quote, “…M and A are supposed to mean N and O, as in ‘no,’ for young gamers,” interspersed as it was with the gravelly-throated game ad voice-over artist whispering menacingly, “Rated M for Mature!” (link here to listen)

burrito.gifOkay, maybe I’m a little oversensitive, but does every news story about gaming always have to start or end with some little stinger about games’ virulent, corrupting, soul-devouring influence on our poor little babies? Do young gamers really have any relevancy to this news story at all? I’ll concede, talking M-ratings is relevant, since apparently EA’s head taco said that acquiring Take-Two would immediately bolster their roster of M-rated games. But nothing is going to bolster anyone’s AO roster of games (there isn’t actually an ESRB A rating) because no major developers release AO games for the same kiss-of-death reasons you’re gonna be waiting a long time for that Disney-approved Aladdin / Jasmine hardcore porn cartoon you’ve been craving since 1992. AO games don’t exist in any practical sense in mainstream retail. That means even mentioning the A [sic] rating is just being reductive and pointless for cuteness’s sake.

Okay, okay, I’m sure some producer got zany after too much coffee and came up with that lead, but I’m tired of the narrative perpetuated in mainstream culture—by Condescending Bastards—that games are pretenders to adulthood.

One Comment

  1. Posted February 26, 2008 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    no cavities


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