The Australian Classification Board has weighed in on Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 and found it somewhat morally objectionable—at least for anyone under the age of 18.
The country’s consumer ratings organization, which weighs in on all films, computer games and publications sold in the country, slapped its R+18 rating on Black Ops 3, which prohibits sales of the game to anyone younger than 18. According to the rating, the game features “high impact” violence (yup, it’s a game about shooting guys), “strong impact” themes (…okay), “moderate impact” language (so not that big of a deal, then) and sex (wait, so how much sex is that?) and “mild impact” drug use. Surely that information be helpful to parents when making purchasing decisions.
Australia is somewhat notorious for getting censorious and ban-happy when it comes to video games, but what’s weird about Black Ops 3 is that it’s only the first Call of Duty game to pull the adults-only rating. Until now, all the other titles have been MA15+, meaning it was rated for age 15 or older. Could Black Ops 3 really be much more violent than something like this scene of betrayal and throat-slitting, from Black Ops 2?
Apparently, Black Ops 3 is more violent—the difference between “strong impact” violent and “high impact” violent, which is also the difference between a game for 15-year-olds and one for 18-year-olds. Guess we’ll have to wait till November to find out what that all means.