Google Slammed Over Violent Mobile Games For Kids
  • Google Slammed Over Violent Mobile Games For Kids

    Admin 0 0 875 Date: 10 Apr 2019
  • Google Play may not have Epic Games’ Fortnite, but the Android mobile game storefront is still a big deal in the mobile games industry. It’s home to thousands of games, many of which are family-friendly titles designed to educate or entertain younger audiences.

    However, an investigation by Wired has found that Google Play may be promoting many violent mobile games to children. The report reveals that games like Mad Max Zombies – a shooter which features gruesome gameplay and zombies spurting blood – has been rated as Pegi 3. The Pegi 3 rating (from a European ratings system) would mean that the game is suitable for players over three-years-old.

    Another grim mobile game with a Pegi 3 rating is Baby Panda Dental Care. The game stars a baby panda more suited to a Five Nights at Freddy’s game, and tasks players with removing rotten teeth from its mouth. If the horrific, wide-eyed design of the panda doesn’t scare younger players then the sight of panda’s terrible oral hygiene just might.

    Wired spotted 36 games with incorrect ratings as well as 16 mobile games with “other forms of dubious content and permissions” such as location tracking. 16 of these mobile games, such as Baby Panda Dental Care have already been totally removed from Google Play or have been re-released with updated ratings and permissions.

    Bacioiu Ciprian, a mobile game developer, says that it’s due to the “honor” based system that developers use when submitting their games. It’s up to each developer to rate their games appropriately when they submit them to the store and Google trusts the developers in this process. Google says that it will remove a game if it violates its policies or has an incorrect rating.

    However, some would argue that the potential revenue a developer could gain by opening its game to a wider audience outweighs the risk of having that game removed. The illuminating report may cause the Google Play team to be more strict with its app submission processes. The company also faces increased competition with the younger mobile gaming demographic because of Apple’s Apple Arcade game subscription.

    Many believe that the subscription service could be hugely popular with families with young children and parents who don’t want their children to be swayed by expensive microtransactions. The games on the Apple service will be ad-free too, meaning they won’t be exposed to anything untoward.

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