BBFC, British Board of Film Classification, company, Eidos Interactive, game, gaming scandals, Giant Bomb, Grand Theft Auto, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, GTA, release, Rockstar Games, scandal, Video game industry
Gaming industry is one of the most prosperous industries in the modern world. There is no wonder that the companies want to earn more money using the popularity of the computer games, and sometimes they may perform illegal actions in pursuit of benefit. Some examples of their unlawful behavior were discovered and led to great scandals in the society.
One of the most famous gaming scandals is connected with Rockstar Games Company which created the Grand Theft Auto series. Everything is all right with the game except the fact that a secret mini-game was planted by the developers in the game “GTA: San Andreas”. If you think that it is not a big deal if a company has decided to add a bonus to their product, I want to disagree and inform you that this game called “Hot Coffee” had a strong sexual subtext. The company tried to convince the society that the hackers are to blame for this abusive addition, but the evidence was found that the hackers had nothing to do with this affair. Finally, the game received 18+ classifications and was even forbidden in Australia as this country does not use mature rating for the computer games.
In 2007 another scandal has taken place in the UK, where the second part of famous “Manhunt” video game was released by the same Rockstar Games Company. The scandal has arisen from the disagreement between the company and the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC). BBFC claimed that the game is too violent and refused to give it any classification rate. The game developers said in their turn that this organization has no right to put any restrictions on the gaming sphere as it deals with films. However, after long and tense debates Rockstar accepted this decision and changed the game in order to make it less bloody and aggressive. On the whole, this situation looks like the act of discrimination against video game industry as BBFC practice another attitude towards the sphere of film making, where such films as “Saw” and “Hostel” are allowed to take their place, although they are much more horrible and disgusting than the second part of “Manhunt”.
Another big scandal concerns the sphere of game reviews. In 2007 the company GameSpot.com has fired its employee, a journalist Jeff Gertsmann. Gertsmann produced honest though almost rude review on the “Eidos Interactive’s Kane and Lynch: Dead Men”. The decision to fire Getsmann produced a highly negative effect on the gaming industry. People began to doubt whether the gaming reviews are real ones or produced by specially hired people who are being told what to write. This scandal became the beginning of setting a new trend of providing independent reviews which are considered to be more reliable. Thus, Gertsmann together with some of his former colleagues organized their own site called Giant Bomb.
Sometimes bad reputation is earned not by the launching of bad product but by bad performance of it. In 2006 Sony released Sony Playstation 3 and organized a press conference which appeared to be the worst conference ever performed. As a result the company was followed by anti-Sony jokes for a long time afterwards.