Australian attorney general refuses to support 18+ game rating

Australia has a long, sordid history when it comes to banning the sale of mature games. Titles which exceed the limits of the Office of Film and Literature Classification's MA15+ rating are refused classification, preventing them from being sold in the Land Down Under. Following such a ban on Valve's Left 4 Dead 2, the introduction of an R18+ rating has been feverishly debated by the nation's officials -- however, a South Australian attorney general named Michael Atkinson is holding up the proceedings by vehemently opposing the adoption of the mature rating.

Atkinson told Australian news outlet News.com.au that he's uncomfortable with the interactive nature of the medium. "People are participating and 'acting-out' violence and criminal behaviour when they are playing a video game," he explained, later adding, "it certainly does restrict choice to a small degree, but that is the price of keeping this material from children and vulnerable adults. In my view, the small sacrifice is worth it."

Rarely can governmental actions be attributed to just one person, but the OFLC's refusal to rate mature titles is a direct result of Atkinson's opposition. Remember, this is the same guy who tried to censor a public document which canvassed Australians on the issue in an attempt to better advise the nation's ratings officials. He censored the study on censorship. Consider our mind truly boggled.

[Via GamesIndustry]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.