Mothers Against Drunk Driving wants a stricter rating on Grand Theft Auto IV. The organization is calling on the Entertainment Software Ratings Board, the independent organization that assigns video-game ratings, to reclassify GTA IV as an Adults Only game. The action-driving game, which includes the ability to drive while intoxicated, is currently rated Mature.
“Drunk driving is not a game, and it is not a joke,” MADD said in a statement released Tuesday. “Drunk driving is a choice, a violent crime and it is also 100 percent preventable.” MADD is also calling on publisher Take-Two Interactive and developer Rockstar Games to consider stopping distribution of the game “out of respect for the millions of victims/survivors of drunk driving.”
Agreed, drunk driving is not a game, but Grand Theft Auto is. If the gaming industry were to follow that logic, then what would happen to games like Hit Man? Murder was still considered a violent crime the last time I checked. What would be left, Mario and Sonic?
“We have a great deal of respect for MADD’s mission, but we believe the mature audience for Grand Theft Auto IV is more than sophisticated enough to understand the game’s content,” Rockstar Games said in a statement to The Associated Press on Wednesday. “For the same reason that you can’t judge an entire film or television program by a single scene, you can’t judge Grand Theft Auto IV by a small aspect of the game.”