ESRB App Lets Parents Read About The Violence in Video Games

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It can be tricky picking what video games are appropriate for certain age groups without trying the game for yourself. While the Electronic Safety Ratings Board (ESRB) isn’t giving out free demos, their updated app might make it a little easier to figure out if that first-person shooter is appropriate for a 10 year-old. The non-profit industry group responsible for the ratings on video games created a program where information about the content in a particular title can be garnered simply by snapping a picture of the game. Perfect for the person on the go, a photo of all games before July 1, 2008 will show the letter rating and what that means and after the date will bring up exactly the level of violence they are talking about.

For example, popular game rated M game Call of Duty: Black Ops’ description reads “can generate pools of blood and dismembered limbs,” according to AP, while Kirby’s Epic Yarn, which is rated E, says “enemies lose feathers, yarn or beads when hit (and) Kirby reacts to damage with an ‘Ow!’ sound effect.” The search by photo app is available for iPhone and Android phones, and can be a valuable tool especially for the person who might not know what their Grand Theft Autos from their Need For Speeds. For a list of the ratings and what they mean, check out the ESRB’s official webpage.

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