A Take-Two Interactive game re-rated by the ESRB for naughty content...
This time, however, the game is top-selling RPG Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, which was released last month by publisher Take-Two Interactive. The ESRB announced today that it was revising its original rating for Oblivion from "T" (13 and older) to "M" (17 and older). The sudden change was based on what the game industry's content rating body describes as "more detailed depictions of blood and gore than were considered in the original rating, 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."
A patch to disable access to the topless characters will be made available shortly. The Xbox 360 version is not affected.
"Parents across the country depend on ESRB ratings every day to make sensible choices about the games they bring home for their families," said Patricia Vance in an ESRB press release. "Rating changes are extraordinarily rare, but if ever one does occur, ESRB recognizes that parents must be made aware of the change as quickly as possible so they are certain to have the most current and accurate information."
The ESRB also alerted parents to the increasing availability of mods for PC titles.
UPDATES: Although the ESRB press release doesn't mention it, GameSpot is reporting that the ratings change will pertain to the Xbox 360 version as well.
Meanwhile, retailers were quick to react to the change. IEMA president Hal Halpin issued a statement saying, "The pace at which the IEMA retailers reacted to the change in the ESRB rating for The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion today stands as testament to the effectiveness and commitment to the industry's self-regulatory efforts... When we were notified of the game's ratings change today, we alerted our member company representatives who communicated to their stores the change in the game's rating..."
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