Microsoft: British Ratings System Spikes Costs

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Microsoft is worrying that the installation of longer review procedures may drive up game costs in England.

After England announced a round of regulations for the games industry based on the Byron report, the country’s development community was quick to voice its concerns, including the argument that increased regulation would not promote proper parenting. Electronic Arts even suggested that a lengthened ratings system will force game delays in the country, where games from North America and Asia already take additional time to be shipped for PAL regions.

Microsoft’s senior regional director in the UK and Ireland, Neil Thompson, sees the lengthy approval process as a potential cost increaser that publishers will pass on to consumers.

“We’re in the business of providing great games to a broad audience of gamers, and we need to be able to fulfill that role by getting products to consumers quickly and at a good price,” he explained.

“We’re concerned with any measures that would mean this process is made more unwieldy,” he continued, “or incurs additional costs which have to be shared with the consumer.”

One effort the British government plans to pursue is to force the BBFC to review titles for children above the age of 12 alongside the widely-accepted PEGI system.

Thompson said in support of PEGI, “We want a steady stream of product to consumers via retail and therefore support PEGI as the single ratings system in the UK. That way, we’re able to ensure the right content goes to the right audience, as efficiently as possible.”

Source: GamesIndustry

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