It seems every week, the biggest news to come from the video game industry involves Grand Theft Auto. It's annoying for the gamer to deal with when there are far better things to be discussing, but politicians and so-called "watchdog" groups never seem to have enough. So, here we go again, another backlash, this time about the hidden content in the latest entry in the series, San Andreas.
Supposedly, on every commercial copy of the game, there is game code that involves a rather explicit sex sequence. You cannot access it without downloading the necessary mod. In other words, it was never intended to be seen and was likely cut by the developers when they had second thoughts. However, the code is still on the disc, and that has critics bashing the company for being irresponsible and ESRB for not being strict enough.
Actually, the critics are getting their names in the spotlight because they have nothing better to do. The sequence in question is admittedly explicit, yet the critics have apparently forgotten that the game also involves shooting cops and hookers. That doesn't seem to matter now, and since those complaints fell on deaf ears, they're going to point to a sex scene that a small number of people are going to go through the trouble to find.
This has nothing to do with "the children." The game is rated appropriately. The AO rating, one above the game's given M, is rarely used (and never on a console game). Does GTA deserve it? Possibly. Would it make a difference to the millions of people who own this version and will buy the next? Not at all. The ratings gap between M and AO is one year. Supposedly, a 17-year old can handle the gore and violence; only an 18-year old can handle the sex.