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What Happens When Governments Regulate Games?




Australia is notorious for putting heavy and often unreasonable burdens on both video games and video game development studios. The latest example with DayZ gives us an insight into what happens when we imbue government with the power of regulation.

Rarely do mass shootings occur within such a short time span as was the case with the El Paso and Dayton shooters in the United States. Since then, even president Trump joined in the absurdity of blaming video games. (It doesn’t matter that Dayton shooter has since been uncovered as fully-immersed into Satanism and the summoning of demons.)

Furthermore, all the previous studies debunking the link between violence and games don’t seem to matter. When politicians want to employ rhetoric that serves to avoid addressing the real issues, video games may come first on the chopping block.

You can always expect long-discredited talking points to come back in such an atmosphere. Still, it is unlikely that the Trump administration will set a legislative course on video games. Australia is another story.


Image courtesy of IGDB/DayZ press kit.

In most recent game-sabotaging news from the continent, Bohemia Interactive’s DayZ has been refused classification for its physical release. But that is not all; the classification for its digital version has been revoked as well. What is the reasoning behind this?

According to the Guidelines for the Classification of Computer Games 2012 by the Australian Classification Board, DayZ was sabotaged in such a way because of “illicit or proscribed drug use related to incentives or rewards.”

Specifically, regulators are referring to the restorative effect of cannabis — one of the numerous items which can be found in DayZ. Although it is a minuscule part of the game and is not directly linked to a “reward system,’ it was enough to sabotage the game on the whole Australian continent.

You see, this is what you can expect when a government is involved in something you like:

  • Vague and capricious rules, so you can be pummeled at will.
  • Extraordinary burdens that stifle creativity.
  • Extra costs for fighting the rules — Bohemia Interactive would have to splurge $10,000 in fees to fight this ruling.

What do you think of the status of DayZ in Australia? Let us know in the comments below! 

Images/videos courtesy of IGDB/DayZ press kit, YouTube/Sky News.

Freelance writer, VR and cryptocurrency enthusiast. Against totalitarian social control, be it in the form of governments or corporate oligarchs.

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