During a the annual general meeting of shareholders, Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa addressed some concerns regarding Nintendo potentially adopting the more hard-nosed content curation process that Sony has developed for the PS4 in the form of censorship policies. Furukawa, however, reiterated what they mentioned before when Sony’s censorship policies were under the spotlight: Nintendo won’t be stepping in to censor third-party games and will instead leave the creative content up to developers to work within the rules of the regional ratings boards.
Censored Gaming posted up the quote from Furukawa in post on June 27th, 2019.
Nintendo has reaffirmed that they believe existing 3rd party rating systems and parental controls are the best approach to content regulation. This is from Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa at this year’s Annual General Meeting of Shareholders pic.twitter.com/T5WM21BT91
— Censored Gaming (@CensoredGaming_) June 28, 2019
If you’re unable to read the message in the tweet, it states…
“Nintendo, as do 3rd-parties and their software, applies for an objective rating from 3rd-party organizations prior to release. If platform-holding companies choose arbitrarily, the diversity and fairness in game software would be significantly inhibited. We provide parental controls that can be used to apply limits.”
This is in direct contradiction to Sony and their current handling of content on their platform, where they not only censor first-party titles but they also have Censorship Officers who oversee and ensure the censorship of third-party games as well, such as Arc of Alchemist or Senran Kagura: 7EVEN.
Basically, what Nintendo is saying is that for their own first-party published games they’ll do what they feel is best suited for the audience they target, but for third-party games they won’t meddle with that content. Development studios’ only creative restriction will be whatever is deemed appropriate for the ratings within that region.
Usually Nintendo tries to steer clear of politics, but they did find themselves writing a joint letter with Sony and Microsoft recently to dissuade President Trump from applying tariffs to game consoles in the trade war with China. Game Informer reported that in the statement the trio wrote…
“”While we appreciate the Administration’s efforts to protect U.S. intellectual property and preserve U.S. high-tech leadership, the disproportionate harm caused by these tariffs to U.S. consumers and businesses will undermine—not advance—these goals. Accordingly, we respectfully request that the Administration remove HTSUS subheading 9504.50.00, covering video game consoles, from the final list of tariffs, and thus refrain from applying tariffs on these products.”
Game Informer noted that the tariffs could increase cost of production and manufacturing and in turn end up raising the price of consoles, which all three companies are trying to avoid.
At least on the software side gamers don’t have to worry about Nintendo censoring third-party games, but if the tariffs affect how all three companies manufacturer their new hardware then it may not matter much anyway because fewer people would buy the consoles, meaning fewer developers would make products for the consoles, and thus fewer games would be sold, potentially leading to a crash. Then again, maybe that’s not all that bad given the current direction the industry has headed in with all of the anti-consumer policies and sociopolitical propaganda?
(Thanks for the news tip Ebicentre)
(Main image courtesy of ColorWare)