I find it funny when countries try to protect people from games. It’s the same when they censor art shows or prohibit literature – it says more about the country than it does about the creative product being restricted. Now Russia is giving The Sims 4 an 18+ rating – but my blood boils at the reason.
18+ [rating] has been assigned in accordance with the law number 436-FZ ‘On the protection of children from information harmful to their health and development.
Wait wait wait, The Sims 4 is harmful to the children? Let’s look at this a bit more closely. The Sims generally gets ratings of T for Teen (ages 13 and up in the US) or a PEGI rating of 12 for the EU. Even the notoriously rigid Australians only give the game an M (ages 15 and up) rating. So, what’s in the game that makes the Russian’s so upset? Well, it’s most likely the same-sex options that have been possible since the game’s inception.
Russia has been causing tons of international controversy with their anti-gay laws. Now, it has extended to gaming. You can expect the LGBTQ community to add this to the pile of issues with Russia at the moment. Coming on the heels of Nintendo’s anti-gay Tomodachi Life, it seems apparent that gamers are fairly universally accepting of same-sex options in games. It doesn’t detract from the experience for straight users – it simply adds to the game, giving people of all orientations a sense of acceptance and normalcy. Shame on you Russia, simulating a gay relationship in the Sims isn’t harmful to kids. I think my midnight waking of my Sims to wash their hands because they didn’t have a shower and needed to get their hygiene levels up would be way more traumatic.
Last Updated: May 12, 2014