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Bethesda Responds To Oblivion Re-Rating

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the took-it-well-all-things-considered dept.

341

Gamespot has details on Bethesda's response to the ESRB for their (some would argue) knee-jerk reaction to fan-added elements of Oblivion. From the article: "There is no nudity in Oblivion without a third party modification. In the PC version of the game only - this doesn't apply to the Xbox 360 version - some modders have used a third party tool to hack into and modify an art archive file to make it possible to create a mesh for a partially nude (topless) female that they add into the game. Bethesda didn't create a game with nudity and does not intend that nudity appear in Oblivion." They go on to state they submitted a 60-page document detailing the violence in the game. If anyone is at fault here, I think it's the ESRB.

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341 comments

Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st cent (2, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261585)

You know one day we'll look back on the pre-Bush era in America as a golden age of freedom, where we acted more out of the desire to maintain our freedom than out of fear, paranoia, and ludicrous overreaction. We are now approaching the point where even the POSSIBILITY of an product's use is grounds for censorship or federal legislation, no matter how many might use that product legitimately.

Don't want the NSA monitoring your phone calls? Sorry, there is the POTENTIAL that terrorists could use it to call other terrorists.

Want to use myspace to talk with your friends? Sorry, there is the POTENTIAL that a pedophile might use it to harm you.

Want to mod your videogame? Sorry, there is the POTENTIAL someone could modify it to show more nudity or violence.

Want freedom of the press? Sorry, there is the POTENTIAL that something the press reveals could compromise our security.

Don't want the government to secretly demand all your Google search records, library book records, video store rentals, etc.? Sorry, there is the POTENTIAL that one of these could have been used by a terrorist to learn how to make a bomb.

-Eric

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (5, Interesting)

Sven The Space Monke (669560) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261640)

2 points:

1) I'm pretty sure you're referencing the DMCA. This was a product not of the Bush administration, but the Clinton administration.

2) Considering how most people seem to enjoy the concept of a nanny-state where their government will protect its citizens from "the bad people" (which may be Communists, terrorists, Socialists, homosexuals, hippies, pedophiles, athiests, intellectuals, liberals, etc), I'm pretty sure many people would enjoy living in a totalitarian regime that protects everone from being offended or shocked. Those who would not enjoy such a fate would likely be branded one of "the bad people".

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (2, Insightful)

jawtheshark (198669) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261692)

I'm pretty sure many people would enjoy living in a totalitarian regime that protects everone from being offended or shocked.

Except that the step from being the offended person to being the offending person is really small... One always has to keep that in mind when whiching for a nanny state.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (0)

CTD (615278) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261913)

Well that and the whole thing about totalitarian states being able to kill their citizens with impunity - I think a good number of people would rather be offended than dead...

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (4, Insightful)

'nother poster (700681) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262052)

But usually not until it's some of their friends and family, or even themselves, that are being sent to the prisons or dying. As long as it's the people they don't like being persecuted and killed they are fat, dumb, and happy.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (1)

tbannist (230135) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262246)

A lot of people won't really think about that until they or someone they love is up for execution.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15262014)

Yes except those who are crying "But think of the children" don't have any concept of this. They simply don't understand and don't want to understand. It's sad really.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (2, Insightful)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261725)

2) Considering how most people seem to enjoy the concept of a nanny-state where their government will protect its citizens from "the bad people" (which may be Communists, terrorists, Socialists, homosexuals, hippies, pedophiles, athiests, intellectuals, liberals, etc), I'm pretty sure many people would enjoy living in a totalitarian regime that protects everone from being offended or shocked. Those who would not enjoy such a fate would likely be branded one of "the bad people".

That's a little one-sided. Let's also add:

conservatives, neocons, Christians, et cetera.

There are just as many people out there who would like laws that silence those groups from expressing their potentially offensive opinions.

Oh...and pedophiles are bad people.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (1)

Sven The Space Monke (669560) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261802)

conservatives, neocons, Christians, et cetera.
My apologies, I should have included them in my list.
Oh...and pedophiles are bad people.
So are terrorists, but neither one are lurking on every corner and website waiting to blow up/molest people's children. I would argue that pedophiles, while a much more likely threat than terrorists, have been somewhat overblown by the people who make money and/or power by having the general poplulace afraid of things.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (1)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261870)

I would argue that pedophiles, while a much more likely threat than terrorists, have been somewhat overblown by the people who make money and/or power by having the general poplulace afraid of things.

"Pedophile" is a favorite of the news media to grab the people's attention and keep them watching through the commercials.

Just this morning (or maybe last night) I saw yet another report about how pedophiles are using the internet to abuse children. The story: a guy adopted a Russian girl and used her for his personal playtoy. I'm thinking the airline who flew him to Russia played a bigger part in her being abused than the internet, but whatever. Perhaps the Russians need to be a little more selective when giving their children to foreigners. There's a reason, after all, that he didn't adopt a kid here in the States.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (-1, Flamebait)

Maljin Jolt (746064) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261945)

That's a little one-sided. Let's also add:

conservatives, neocons, Christians, et cetera.

There are just as many people out there who would like laws that silence those groups from expressing their potentially offensive opinions.

Oh...and pedophiles are bad people.


Let me add another side to this multifaceted problem: for me, Christians, Muslims and Neocons are just as bad as Pedophiles. Because all of those groups are actually coercing others by force and violence. I hate them not for "potentially offensive opinions", but for their actual violence and crimes against humanity already exhibited. In the sense of elementary difference between potentiality and actuality, as defined in ancient greek philosophy.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15262042)

Oh...and pedophiles are bad people.

Fuck you. Pedophiles who give into their urges are committing bad acts, but bad acts do not inherently come from bad people--only wholesale surrender to their urges would. Pedophiles are just sick individuals, frequently under quite a lot of emotional distress from an attraction that they didn't choose, who need help rather than demonization.

You are part of the problem.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (0)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262329)

Yeah, that attitude and a buck fifty will get me a Washington Post

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (5, Insightful)

/ASCII (86998) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262397)

I have met my fair share of bad people in my life, but I have yet to meet anyone who considered themselves 'bad' or 'evil'. We have an amazing capacity to rationalize our behaviour. Most serial killers, dictators and child molestors consider themselves good people. Aside from a small group of mentally unbalanced, no one considers themselves 'evil'.

In the end, the _only_ good meassure I've seen of an individual is what they _do_. In other words, it does not matter if a practicing pedophile says he loves children and thinks that what he does is good for the children, it only matters that he molests children and by doing so scars them for life. That makes him a _bad_ person. Even if he thinks that he does what he does to make children happy.

A pedophile who does _not_ molest children but has the urge to do so is not a bad person. He is a sich person in need of help and with my sympathy.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (2, Insightful)

zaguar (881743) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262034)

1) I'm pretty sure you're referencing the DMCA. This was a product not of the Bush administration, but the Clinton administration. No, I'm pretty sure he refers to the P.A.T.R.I.O.T act.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (3, Informative)

(A)*(B)!0_- (888552) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261654)

"Want to mod your videogame? Sorry, there is the POTENTIAL someone could modify it to show more nudity or violence."
What does the government have to do with the ESRB?

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (3, Informative)

Sven The Space Monke (669560) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261729)

At this point, not much. However, there have been attempts at legally enforcing ESRB ratings. To my knowledge, most of them have been unsucessful (at least in the US). There is at least one law that I know for sure is an attempt to legally enforce the ESRB ratings, but it's in Canada. Bill 30 [legassembly.sk.ca] is the province of Saskatchewan's attempt to make it illegal to even advertise or display a game where someone under the ERSB rated age could see it. It doesn't have much opposition at the moment, as the government is playing the lame-assed "you want our children to see PORNOGRAPHIC VIDEO GAMES?!?" card to anyone who speaks up against it. While it isn't shutting me up, it kills almost any support I manage to cull.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15261898)

Well, basically, the ESRB was created in response to government threats. So while it's a non-governmental body, the shadow of legislation has always hung over it. (It was always a bipartisan thing, led by right wing Democrats.)

This is all turning into an anti-hacking (the good kind of hacking), anti-fan created content action. I don't know if it will work, but I wouldn't be surprised to see at least heavy policing of the mod community.

Meanwhile we have some other unimportant things going on, like 6 dollars a gallon coming soon. (I don't have to say for a gallon of what, do I?)

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (3, Insightful)

'nother poster (700681) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262017)

Hm, lets see. What DOES the government have to do with the ESRB? Well, they have publicly announced in the past that if the industry did not regulate itself, they, the government, would step in and regulate them. This was the impetus for the creation of the ESRB. Later the government said that the ESRB needed to broaden their ratings enforcement or the government would step in and do so. Lately the government has said that they think that games are not being given ratings that are high enough for the ages listed due to the potential of mods, expansions, and hacks, and therefor will step in with legislative relief if the ESRB doesn't meet their unpublished arbitrary standards.

So, what exactly does the U.S. government have to do with the ESRB? They are the Sword of Damocles hanging over the head of a self regulatory body that was created simply because of threats of legislative regulation of a sector of business in a free country. Pretty simple, see.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (3, Insightful)

(A)*(B)!0_- (888552) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262092)

"So, what exactly does the U.S. government have to do with the ESRB? They are the Sword of Damocles hanging over the head of a self regulatory body that was created simply because of threats of legislative regulation of a sector of business in a free country. Pretty simple, see."
You give a lot of creedance to idle threats made by politicians who have nothing to say so they spit out the easy, anti-free speech line. I don't have such a fear of such people. Any time legislators have tried to take it the next step and actually get involved in regulating video games, the courts have struck the law down.

Lawmakers may threaten the ESRB but there's no reason to think that the ESRB should be affected by such threats. Do you actually think any politician wants the ESRB to meet their demands? No, of course not. The politician wants the ESRB to be done away with and the creation of a government body to handle suppressing free speech as a little notch in their bed post.

Now, since you've gone to the trouble of defending the post I replied to - why is the main thesis of the point that Bush caused all of this when Lieberman, Tipper Gore, and lately, Hillary Rodham are the real root?

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (1)

'nother poster (700681) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262405)

Well, there is reason to think that the ESRB would take the threats seriously. Only an idiot would ignore threats by the government of a country, especially the one in which they reside.

Secondly, I don't expect the ESRB to ever be able to comply. Notice that I said "unpublished arbitrary standards".

Lastly, I didn't take the time to "defend the post" that you replied to. You need to read a bit more carefully. You asked a question. I answered that question. I never said a word about Bush. None. You will notice also that I used the terms "government" and "legislative" Never president, and I used no personal names at all.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (5, Insightful)

Kelt (85402) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261657)

As much as I agree, and many of those statements are true, the "going after video games" trend is a bi-partistan thing. One of the heads of the inquest recently over Hot Coffee was Hillary Clinton. Both sides want to be seen as "making the world safe for our children" and moreover, don't want to be labeled as "wanting to make the world unsafe for our children" in political ads.

It's sad, but in the end the uninformed, uncaring voters are to blame.

-Kelt

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (3, Insightful)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261876)

As much as I agree, and many of those statements are true, the "going after video games" trend is a bi-partistan thing.

No, no, no. All crazy government interference started with GWB. Al Gore wasn't a huge supporter of the V-Chip and internet "controls" to "protect the kids". Tipper didn't go after explicit lyrics to "protect the kids". Joe Lieberman didn't start the first major congressional inquiry into violent video Games "for the kids".

None of this actually occured until Bush. He is destorying the country.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (1)

Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262296)

Not to mention the fact that Tipper Gore was the original "Uninformed Shrill-bitch anti-Gamer" wife of a politician, LONG before Al was Veep.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (4, Insightful)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261702)

You know one day we'll look back on the pre-Bush era in America as a golden age of freedom

Kinda like I already look back on the pre-Bush era of Slashdot... where we didn't blame every single thing we could irrationally connect to the President on him, and get modded up for it.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (2, Insightful)

kaellinn18 (707759) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261765)

MOD PARENT UP! Seriously, it's amazing how anything questionable on this site gets pointed back at Bush. Granted, he hasn't helped the situation, but this shit has been going on for decades. I wish people would stop being so naive. It's not the president; it's the whole system.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (0, Troll)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261857)

Seriously, it's amazing how anything questionable on this site gets pointed back at Bush

That's called "responsibility." When you're in charge of the country, yes, you have to answer for everything that goes on.

Well, at least, that's the idea...

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (4, Funny)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261935)

That's called "responsibility." When you're in charge of the country, yes, you have to answer for everything that goes on.

That is so irrational. I got lost my virginity during the Clinton administration and I'll be god dammed if you are going to give him credit for it.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (2, Funny)

Beer Moon (894244) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262108)

That is so irrational. I got lost my virginity during the Clinton administration and I'll be god dammed if you are going to give him credit for it.

Sounds like you got a book deal on your hands!!

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (1)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262120)

Excellent riposte :)

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (3, Funny)

H0p313ss (811249) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261847)

where we didn't blame every single thing we could irrationally connect to the President on him, and get modded up for it

Exactly! That's what Microsoft was for, and we loved it!

Kids these days...

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (1)

(A)*(B)!0_- (888552) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261969)

"Kinda like I already look back on the pre-Bush era of Slashdot... where we didn't blame every single thing we could irrationally connect to the President on him, and get modded up for it."
Bravo. The state of intellectual discourse has sunk to a depressing level. People either blame Bush for everything or blame those socialist liberals for everything. There's no room for any discussion of points being made; there's just blind following of whatever label a particular person has decided to latch onto (usually without any real knowledge of what that label traditionally means - all they know is that they hate the other side.)

A lot of people strike me as rooting for a sports team when it comes to discussing politics. It's sad. Grandparent is a perfect example of someone who doesn't have any real knowledge or opinion on the issue - except that he read 1984, really liked it, and thinks it would be cool to fight the man.

Mod Parent Down (4, Insightful)

TooMuchEspressoGuy (763203) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261784)

The "security culture" that the parent speaks of isn't a purely Bush-administration thing. Clinton was just as bad (he passed the DMCA, for example, and helped work toward several "think of the children" measures.) Before that, the justification for anti-freedom laws was the threat of Communism. Before that, National Socialism. Before that, thwarting the Great Depression. And so on.

There has been an anti-freedom faction in American politics ever since the Alien and Sedition Acts. Blindly blaming everything on Bush, despite his horrid presidency, will get you nowhere.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15261808)

You know one day we'll look back on the pre-Bush era in America as a golden age of freedom...

I think you mean "pre-Clinton". Don't forget all the crap he let happen *cough*DMCA*cough.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (5, Insightful)

Dr Reducto (665121) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261879)

This "golden age of freedom" you reference never existed. Every president for the past 50 years has took away precious rights.

Clinton had a habit of pandering with the ever-so-popular "think of the children" in order to pass gun legislation in the wake of Columbine.

Even in the 1970's, Jimmy Carter first authorized the wiretapping many pan Bush (not to mention the countless other presidents who have used it) for employing.

Face it, the interests of those in power is to gain more power. It's not a left vs right thing.

Re:Why I'm ashamed to be an American in the 21st c (1)

F_Scentura (250214) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262027)

"You know one day we'll look back on the pre-Bush era in America as a golden age of freedom"

What the fuck, this is Hillary/Tipper nanny-stating. I'm as unhappy with Bush as the rest, but this is a different set of cunts at work.

The Good Old Days (4, Insightful)

Shihar (153932) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262200)

I agree with parent. Remember the good old days of freedom? Can you recall how pleasant this world was when women stayed in the kitchen cooking a man his supper instead of going off to college and getting a job? Remember back when anarchists were jailed during World War I? Remember during the great depression when the federal government sweeped up a massive amount of power? Recall the good old days of World War II when the entire economy was turned to war and everyone of age was drafted? Recall how much more pleasant things were when we rounded up every single Japanese American on the west coast and put them in internment camps? Remember the pleasant days before the civil rights movement when them negros stayed with their own? Remember when we had nice clean segregated schools, buses, and water fountains? Remember the good old days of McCarthy when we hunted down those evil communist? How about the pleasant days of the Korean War where we drafted and killed Americans (to say nothing of Koreans) in the tens of thousands? Or how about the wonderful days of the Vietnam war where we drafted an entire generation and left our soldiers so fucked up that they would line up men, women, and children on the side of a road and shoot them all.

Get a grip. I'll take today over pretty much any time in 20th century. I am not saying today is a utopia either. I am saying that all eras had their problems. In fact, I would say that this era is far less fucked up, even with Bush drunk at the wheel, then most of the 20th century. 50 years ago I wouldn't have been able to merry my current girlfriend in the south because she isn't white. Up until 30 years ago since the 1900, I would have stood the risk of being drafted and sent off into a meat grinder of a war.

I am not saying you shouldn't be pissed at how things are, but don't hold up the past like it was some magical fairyland utopia because in a word or four, the past fucking sucked.

Re:The Good Old Days (1)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262399)

I have a feeling, judging by your tone, if me and you had a long conversation, we'd end up disagreeing severely and it would probably end in a fistfight... that being said, that was an excellent post. I think, on all sides of every political argument since the the dawn of man, a lack of perspective is a common theme paralyzing the discussion.

This is insane. (2, Insightful)

incubuz1980 (450713) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261587)

People could paste a picture of "a partialy nude female" on their monitor while playing any game?

All games sould be rated M?

Hackers could possibly hack the ESRB website and add a picture of "a partialy nude female" on the site.

Sould the ESRB website be rated M?

Windows (M for Mature) (2, Funny)

slashbob22 (918040) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261736)

Heck someone could use their computer to view inappropriate material (I am shocked). Windows should be the next target: it allows you to play games (some M for mature), view pr0n, and even kill people (military systems).

ESRB cannot protect children from things they see or do in the real world - but at least they can keep them ignorant, of the real world, in the virtual one.

Re:This is insane. (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262153)

Pictochat on the DS should definitely be AO by that principle, judging from some of the things I've seen people draw...

Re:This is insane. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15262362)

Um don't let the ESRB know about my desktop, all games would be rated AO.

lol (1)

BisexualPuppy (914772) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261590)

lol, jews again. Yes, jews don't like nude people. That's why their women are ugly.

Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (2, Interesting)

Winterblink (575267) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261636)

One could apply the same thinking to the original Hot Coffee debacle, that the content was only accessible via a third party hack. They got rerated, but somehow Bethesda wants to be treated differently?

I'm not saying I'm agreeing with this kind of crap, but it's nobody's fault but their own for including the content inside the game in some capacity and not cleaning it out after GTA suffered the same fate. They should just suck it up, and enjoy the free publicity.

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (1)

pezpunk (205653) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261696)

if it's not in the game, the game should not be judged on that criteria. in order to see the pornographic content, users had to VIOLATE THEIR TERMS OF USE of the game. those pornographic images weren't in the game that rockstar sold. they were locked away and completely inaccessible, unless users broke the user agreement they agreed to when they installed the game.

it is the same as rating a movie based on scenes that were cut out, only visible by breaking and entering the studio editing room.

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (2, Insightful)

greyfeld (521548) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261722)

Apparently, you are misunderstanding the difference between Oblivion and GTA's "Hot Coffee" content. GTA had the sexually explicit content, a man and women engaged in a graphical depiction of sex, built into the game. This content was released by TakeTwo in all versions (Xbox, Playstation, PC, etc) of the game. Yes it did take a 3rd-party hack to unlock the content, but the content was an actual piece of code included in the game when purchased at retail.

Oblivion, on the other hand, does not have that content shipped with the game. It cannot be unlocked because it doesn't exist. What Bethesda did do, was make a tool set available so that players could make their own content for the game. There are dozens of player created mods available with new content that you can add to the PC VERSION ONLY. One of these player created mods happens to be a naked woman model.

Bethesda is complaining that this content was not included in the product that they shipped and thus they should not be rated on content they are not selling. I happen to agree with that. How can they be held responsible for something they really have no control over? If you buy a circular saw and proceed to cut off your hand, should the circular saw manufacturer be held accountable for your stupidity?

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (1)

Zebadias (861722) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261805)

This is not all true, in oblivion the females are naked under there tops in the relece of the game, the mod just removes the bra.

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (1)

Shihar (153932) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262244)

This is not all true, in oblivion the females are naked under there tops in the relece of the game, the mod just removes the bra.

Yeah? And I am naked under my clothes too. Quick, someone slap an M for mature on my ass.

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (5, Informative)

AnyNoMouse (715074) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261859)

Oblivion, on the other hand, does not have that content shipped with the game. It cannot be unlocked because it doesn't exist. What Bethesda did do, was make a tool set available so that players could make their own content for the game. There are dozens of player created mods available with new content that you can add to the PC VERSION ONLY. One of these player created mods happens to be a naked woman model.

Actually, that's not entirely true, at least in the PC version of the game.

In the packed BSA files there is a nude female mesh torso with a nude female texture associated to it. This mesh is meant to be used with armor and clothing to allow skin to show (arms, neck, upper chest, stomach, etc). The first nude mod released for Morrowind was simply this nude mesh and texture extraced from the BSA archive, renamed and placed in the proper directory.

As proof of this, Bethesda has not released a .nif exporter for Oblivion and only recently have people been able to create models for the game purely through the efforts of a few people reverse engineering the format (it's hardly complete and the support for models is limited at the moment).

Of course, I don't think it will be possible to use this mesh on the 360 version and Bethesda's 1.1 beta patch removes the nipples on the texture. Also, the nude mesh is horribly deformed to make it fit to clothing necklines better.

Just wanted to point out what the reality of the situation is... I think Bethesda is in the right on this matter (and Rockstar as well, btw).

-MD

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (1)

Winterblink (575267) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261926)

That's an interesting point, but again I'm not agreeing with either case to be honest. Both required a third party to intervene in some capacity either through a hack to show content already there, or a mod to introduce the content.

Personally I don't think either company should be held responsible in their individual cases, but with the legal and regulatory systems so heavily based on precedence there's not much Bethesda can do here.

Big difference. (0, Redundant)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261728)

In Hot Coffee, the data was on the disc, from an early concept for a minigame that was ultimately decided against including in the normal game. It was leftover data never meant to be accessible, but hackers found a way to access the nudity/bad polygonal dry-humping that Rockstar had originally created.

This is a far different case - fans created a mod which introduced nudity into a game that never had it on its original media. It'd be like me hacking a Super Mario ROM, adding boobs onto the Mario sprite, and then suing Nintendo for what I created and pasted into their game without their knowledge.

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (0, Redundant)

rabbot (740825) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261747)

There was no nude content included in the game. Please read the article.

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (0, Redundant)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261751)

The difference with Hot Coffee was that the content was part of the game, people simply gained access to it.

This is like rating Half-Life AO because someone might release a multiplayer porn mod.

For that matter...have you *SEEN* some of the stuff that's been done with Garry's Mod?

HL2...it's not for kids any more. (not that it ever was, but whatever).

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (0, Redundant)

lbrandy (923907) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261775)

One could apply the same thinking to the original Hot Coffee debacle, that the content was only accessible via a third party hack. They got rerated, but somehow Bethesda wants to be treated differently?

Yes, it could apply if we take two fundamentally different situations and irrationally apply the same logic, then yes. The "Hot Coffee" material was unlocked by a third party, and the Oblivion material was created by a third party. If your game can be modded and hacked into a mature game, then you should be a mature game? The game that comes on the disc contains nothing sexually explicit, locked or unlocked... you have to literally go out onto the web and download the explicit artfile yourself. If being able to "go out on the internet and download porno into the game" is sufficient grounds for calling something mature.. that's a wee bit ridiculous. Every game ever moddable, then, should be rated mature... since modders can make them mature at will.

Rockstar has mature materials actually on the game disc.. they created it, they sold it. It wasn't accessible, but it was there. It was their code with their name on it. I consider that situation to be materially different than Oblivion is getting blamed for art NOT on their game disc.

Re:Hot Coffee 2: More Cream Please (0, Redundant)

twistedsymphony (956982) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261809)

While I don't agree with the GTA decision or the ES4 decision there is a distinct difference.

In GTA the content WAS ON THE DISC, it might not have been accessible but it was on there. In ES4 the content didn't even exist, some user created it and added it into the game themselves.

Imagine this, you buy a computer with a hidden and locked folder that contains vulgar content... You don't know it exists but someone finds it out and starts telling people how to hack their computers to get at it... THIS is GTA.

Now Imagine you buy a computer with NO hidden or locked content at all. Someone starts a porn site on the internet and starts telling people how to download it to their computers... THIS is ES4

You might as well not sell computers, cameras, or even pens and pencils to minors because they might be inclined, to download, take pictures of, or draw their own nudity.

I think the REAL kicker is the 360 version, not having it's rating upped for nudity but for violence and gore, which according to Bethesda they noted as the highest possible level when submitting the game for review. It just shows the ESRB's incompetence, and THAT is the sort of thing that starts to draw the attention from the political types.

Free publicity (2, Insightful)

Cyrgo (784568) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262029)

They should just suck it up, and enjoy the free publicity.

Ah, but isn't Bethesda's response to the ESRB more free publicity?

I think that Bethesda has done right, publicity-wise, by not sucking it up and continuing the fight on the media.
As they fight, everyone else listens.

everyone loves analogies. (0, Troll)

pezpunk (205653) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261646)

let's say i go out and buy the lateset harry potter book. very nice. i find it in the children's section. then i decide to draw naughty pictures in the margins. uh oh! the book is now pornography! pull them all off the shelves and burn them!

Obviously an over reaction (4, Insightful)

arkham6 (24514) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261667)

The ERSB is obviously over reacting to this 'hack'. This isnt blatant nudity, this is a form that has textures applied over it to give the appearance of wearing clothing. If you actualy SAW the 'naked' image, all you see are wierd looking psudo breasts, that are not even complete. There is no nipple, there is no obvious sexuality. And there is certanly no minigame where you get to boink anywhere ALA hot coffee.

the ERSB is just rying to show they "putting their foot down" against nudity in games. Unfortunately they are doing it the wrong way, but that does not really matter to them. Walmart mom and k-mart dad don't really understand layered modeling and don't really care.

Not an over reaction (1)

Chris_Jefferson (581445) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262237)

OK, there are two seperate issues here, with hot coffee and this patch.

First of all, should they be rated M at all, even if the content was available in the game easily? I'm not sure about that, I don't know how the American rating system works.

However, on the other hand, I DO think that these things should be used when deciding rating. The ESRB has to have a blanket "If it is on the CD, it counts" policy. So, at the moment we are fairly sure you can't get the hot coffee mod without external hacking, but how we be 100% sure of that? Often people find cheats and hidden things in games years after they come out. There is no way the ESRB can hunt into every corner, try every way of playing the game. So they have to have this policy.

Why stop there ESRB (1)

rabbot (740825) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261681)

Why doesn't the ESRB just go ahead and label every PC game as mature since the same thing can be done to every other game. The ESRB has officially failed at doing their job.

Re:Why stop there ESRB (1)

spyrochaete (707033) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262379)

Why doesn't the ESRB just go ahead and label every PC game as mature since the same thing can be done to every other game. The ESRB has officially failed at doing their job.

You have a point but I disagree with your conclusion. The ESRB already appends their ratings with "Gameplay experience may change online" since they can't account for what 12 year olds spam in public chat channels. They should have another disclaimer saying that they are rating the product inside the box, and that the product may be modified by third parties.

AHHH !!! A TIT !!!! IN A MOD !!! (3, Funny)

Chaffar (670874) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261685)

Won't somebody think of the children !?!?!

I believe they should also ban US children from travelling to the French Riviera since they'll get to see many more corrupting (and real-live) tits over there.

Re:AHHH !!! A TIT !!!! IN A MOD !!! (1)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261786)

Ever been to New Orleans?

My first visit there was at the age of 12...let me tell you, walking down Bourbon Street in the middle of the day nowhere near Mardi Gras, a 12 year old still finds plenty of naughty things to look at when the parents aren't looking.

Re:AHHH !!! A TIT !!!! IN A MOD !!! (1)

twistedsymphony (956982) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261906)

It depends on the Age of the children, we're allowed to see breasts for the first few months of our lives but then we're not allowed to until we're 18

So... (1)

minusX (967653) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261698)

Why isn't FFXI M? Hackers did the same with the mesh.

Re:So... (1)

pezpunk (205653) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261712)

same with every sims game ever released, and hell just about every other game ever.

Yeah, it's rediculous (5, Funny)

Yuioup (452151) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261704)

I'm gonna hack Super Mario Brothers DS. I'm gonna make it so that the princess will be topless, and Mario will be running around with his tallywacker swinging all over the place.

I'm gonna put it on the internet so that people can download it and install it.

ESRB is going to change the rating of Super Mario Brothers DS to "M" for mature.

Just you watch.

Y

Re:Yeah, it's rediculous (1)

Kierthos (225954) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261813)

Ahem.... GU Comics [gucomics.com] beat you to the funny.

Kierthos

Re:Yeah, it's rediculous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15262322)

Wrong. GU Comics has never been funny.

Re:Yeah, it's rediculous (1)

LarsWestergren (9033) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261987)

ESRB is going to change the rating of Super Mario Brothers DS to "M" for mature.
Just you watch.


And rightly so! If only you knew what REALLY [vgcats.com] went on in those games. Tsk tsk.

Re:Yeah, it's rediculous (1)

Duds (100634) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262074)

Only if said skin was ALREADY in the game!

Why is it everyone is being ignorent of this very central point.

The content being rated is everything shipped on the disk whether you can access or not. If you create something that was never on the disk it won't affect the rating.

Hot coffee was on the disk, but hidden. This was on the disk, but hidden, your topless princess will not be.

Re:Yeah, it's rediculous (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262195)

You need to RTFA. The ESRB nudity complaint WAS NOT based on what was actually in the game or on the disc. It was based on the POTENTIAL for fans to mod the game to include nudity with new "skins."

-Eric

Re:Yeah, it's rediculous (1)

Duds (100634) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262275)

No, it wasn't. Bethesda are claiming that.

The ESRB said ", as well as the presence of a locked-out art file or 'skin' that, if accessed through a third party modification to the PC version of the game, allows the user to play with topless versions of female characters,' "

i.e - what's ALREADY on the disk.

if this keeps up Games will have to be sumited for (1)

aka_big_wurm (757512) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261714)

If this keeps up games may have to be submited for review by ESRB when they go gold and then given a rating after a review period.

america-where boobs are a bigger threat than guns. (5, Insightful)

bunions (970377) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261721)

I swear, we have more in common with the Islamic fundamentalists we're at war with than we have differences.

I can snap necks all goddamn day as Sam Fisher, but if there might be a possibility that a child might see OH CHRIST A BREAST HOLY SWEET JESUS FORFEND, everyone immediately jumps up their own butts.

Re:america-where boobs are a bigger threat than gu (1)

itchy92 (533370) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261911)

I know people say this all the time, but this may honestly be my favorite post on Slashdot ever.

I'm not sure if it's because this one statement is so acerbically accurate, or if it's the mental image of people jumping up their own butts.

Re:america-where boobs are a bigger threat than gu (1)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261939)

So, how long do you think we have until burka laws start getting passed?

Re:america-where boobs are a bigger threat than gu (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262186)

To be fair to parents, it's really easy to tell if your child is screwing up their life by being randomly violent-- in fact, usually the police will notice it even if you don't. But it's comparatively very difficult to figure out if your child is screwing up their life by having unprotected sex.

Re:america-where boobs are a bigger threat than gu (1)

bunions (970377) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262225)

I guess I'm unaware of the correlation of boob-viewing and increased incidence of unprotected sex, perhaps you would care to enlighten us.

Re:america-where boobs are a bigger threat than gu (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262400)

I'm not defending the ESRB, just trying to explain things from another point of view that's not generally acknowledged by Slashdot. Also I'm sick of seeing the exact same goddamned post on every single movie/game rating article on Slashdot... and always modded up to +5.

Personally, I think changing the ESRB rating is going to make people think they don't know what the hell they're doing.

Re:america-where boobs are a bigger threat than gu (2, Funny)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262238)

You don't want your children seeing a naked boob on the hooker they just butchered with a chainsaw either.

Re:america-where boobs are a bigger threat than gu (1)

bunions (970377) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262368)

once he's butchered the hooker the metaphorical cows are out of the barn, chief.

How long until.... (1)

shadowkin (863961) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261724)

someone realizes people have been able to have households full of naked sims, and rerates The Sims to AO+?

Re:How long until.... (1)

masterzora (871343) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261905)

Jack Thompson already tried that one.

Different Ratings? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15261779)

So based on the details and the platform difference shouldn't tne ESRB technically let the the Xbox version stay at "Teen" and the PC version be upped to "Mature"?

Now that's something that would be interesting to explain to parents. =P

Re:Different Ratings? (3, Interesting)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261968)

Isn't Counter-Strike rated teen?

I recall there being a lot of custom sprays depecting explicit...err...content.

How about a standard ESRB warning:

"ESRB ratings do not reflect potential changes to content by online or modified play."

Re:Different Ratings? (1)

jackbird (721605) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262263)

Sorry, what you're proposing is rational and sensible. Go to the back of the line.

Re:Different Ratings? (1)

scaryjohn (120394) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262276)

How about a standard ESRB warning: "ESRB ratings do not reflect potential changes to content by online or modified play."

It's either that, or all modifiable games get an —M— now.

Apparently it seems to matter that there were nipples on the CD. Grumble.

Re:Different Ratings? (2, Informative)

nsanders (208050) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262335)

Most online games all ready have this warning, and it should apply to Modable games as well. Usually when you launch the game you will see an ESRB warning that says something along the lines of "Online content may change and may not be appropriate for rated ages"

way to buckle under pressure (2, Insightful)

Ender Ryan (79406) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261817)

To the folks at the ESRB, way to buckle under pressure. Now you're (almost) useless as a ratings board. You can't ever please the people who are using you as a scapegoat, it isn't only futile to try, it's also damaging.

Fucking figures though... This kind of shit can be really scary in America. Go up against a jury of freedom-hating prudes, and you could be wiped out. But this sort of thing won't help.

Entertainment (1)

Joe U (443617) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261842)

What we really need to do is capture the hot coffee mod to video, then start releasing patches for games like SimCity, Railroad Tycoon, Bejeweled, etc... It wouldn't be that hard, simple dialog box and then play the video file.

Then sit back and watch the ESRB implode.

Re:Entertainment (1)

CTD (615278) | more than 8 years ago | (#15261946)

There is some wisdom in that. Get a team of volunteer coders to insert Hot Coffee into a random game each week as a 'mod' and make the point again and again until someone gets it: You can't rate what people do after they buy the product...

It's akin to changing the rating on a movie because someone may touch themselves inappropriately when certain actreses are on screen. Even clothed.

Hmmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15261953)

You know I have mods for most games out there that change the way a character looks. From now on when I don't like a new game I'm going to make a character look nude so they get rated as Mature.

Windows? (2, Funny)

Maljin Jolt (746064) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262000)

Please, someone make a nudity hack to Solitaire...

On a completely unrelated note (0, Offtopic)

GeekDork (194851) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262033)

Am I the only one who's getting a broken USAF flash ad that "leaks" over a part of the article due to borked transparency?

Well, if it wasn't for the ESRB.... (0, Redundant)

GuyverDH (232921) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262077)

We'd have just that many more welfare recipients running around.

I mean, where else can incompetant, lazy, worthless individuals rise to power to think they get to determine what content I or my children should or should not see.

That's a decision for me alone. If I determine that my 12 year old is mature enough to handle gore/violence/nudity whatever, that's my choice - not some dork pulling a god trip trying to force feed the nation their *opinion*.

Re:Well, if it wasn't for the ESRB.... (1)

spyrochaete (707033) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262358)

I mean, where else can incompetant, lazy, worthless individuals rise to power to think they get to determine what content I or my children should or should not see.

The ESRB summarizes potentially objectionable content in 5 to 300-hour games in about 10 words, and simplifies even that summary down to one blanket rating. You can base your purchase decision on the rating or summary so that you don't have to play the whole game to decide whether the most objectionable material is in line with your personal style of parenting. ESRB ratings are not opinion, they are raw data. A dismembered corpse strewn around a room isn't "gore" in someone's opinion, it's just plain gore.

The ESRB's only power is credibility, and that power is earned, not imposed. The new M rating means you can't buy this already bestselling game at Walmart, and that your kids cannot buy it unless you accompany them when they try to purchase it. Perhaps you'd like to abolish licenses for cars and firearms because they are parenting your children for you as well?

The ratings system empowers parents; it doesn't replace them. If you let a sticker on a box father your children then you are the worthless one.

Potential Nudity Aside... (5, Interesting)

lesleymac (954512) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262079)

If you've played the game, there's more than enough violence and gore to earn a mature rating. I'm thinking in particular of the final Dark Brotherhood quest, and that daedra quest with the mad wizard...it was pretty "Resident Evil"-esque. Personally, I like the violence and gore. I don't really care that it's rated M, but I'm pretty sure the M rating is appropriate. The real question is how did the ESRB miss all of that gore? Maybe their just making a big deal about the topless mod to smokescreen the fact that the game should never have gotten a Teen rating.

Support Bethesda in the Cause! (2, Interesting)

Durrill (908003) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262267)

I am sick of people hopping onboard the ethical bandwagon when something obscure, like nipples, could possibly be exposed to our once "breast fed" children. What the ESRB did was wrong. They should have done their homework on the nudity mod before making a re-rating of the game. I have placed a complaint to the ESRB concerning this problem and I ask that anyone else who loves this game do the same.

You can submit a comment/complaint here [esrb.org] .

Nudity vs. Violence (5, Insightful)

inflamez (885475) | more than 8 years ago | (#15262312)

Included in Oblivion without 3rd party plug-ins / add-ons:
Dismembered corpses; human skulls split apart by an axe; a person with his face crushed and his entrails hanging around; skeletons of babies trapped inside the catacombs of their own mother; and lots of other (very graphical) forms of violence .... Rated TEEN.

And now we have (through a 3rd party modification of a mesh already in game):
Nipples ... Rated M. Oh my god! Teh Horror! N I P P L E S . Ban it! O_o
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