Q: What is the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System?
A: The Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System is a user-friendly system, endorsed by all sectors of the coin-operated amusement industry, Members of Congress and various child advocacy organizations, that allows consumers to quickly ascertain the content of coin-operated video games. The System uses a color-coded, “traffic light” approach so that even young children are able, following instructions from their parent’s, to make responsible game-playing decisions.
Q: How is the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System different from the rating systems for home and PC-based computer games?
A: While the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System provides information to consumers comparable in certain respects to the information provided by the ratings established by the Entertainment Software Rating Board for home video games, our System it is not age based and uses color-coded Parental Advisory Disclosure Messages to alert players to game content. Fundamental differences between the coin-operated and consumer segments of the video game industry (e.g., product development, marketing, cost, life-cycle, packaging, venues in which games appear, player demographics, access by children, etc.) led to the development of a separate system for coin-operated video games.
Q: Why is the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System necessary?
A: While many coin-operated video games are suitable for play by children of all ages, some coin-operated video games contain scenes of violence that some parents may not wish their young children to play. The trend in coin-operated video game development is toward development of games that are suitable for all ages, and the coin-operated video game industry has put in place a user-friendly method to quickly ascertain the content of coin-operated video games in the event parents wish to limit game play by their children.
Q: Who decides which Parental Advisory Disclosure Message will appear on a particular coin-operated video game?
A: The manufacturer and/or developer of each game uses a Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System “Guideline” that poses a series of detailed questions regarding the content of video game releases. By using the Guidelines, the manufacturer and/or developer is able to accurately identify the appropriate Parental Advisory Disclosure Message to be placed on each coin-operated video game. Game ratings forms can be obtained by contacting AAMA at 847.290.9088.
Q: Who decides which game a child should play?
A: The Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System is designed to provide parents with sufficient information about the content of coin-operated video games so that they may make informed decisions about the games their children may play. Parents are encouraged to educate themselves about the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System, and to accompany their children into locations where coin-operated video games are available and to assist their children in making game-playing decisions. As part of the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System, whenever feasible, the staff at locations where children who are unaccompanied by a parent may have access to coin-operated video games are encouraged to discourage such children from playing coin-operated video games which carry a “Strong” (i.e., red color) Parental Advisory Disclosure Message.
Q: Where will Parental Advisory Disclosure Messages appear on coin-operated video games?
A: The Parental Advisory Disclosure Messages will appear either in a color-coded sticker that is affixed to the header of coin-operated video games or incorporated into the artwork on the header of such games in a location that is readily visible to the players of the game at all times. The Disclosure Message will typically appear in the lower right-hand corner of the game header; if the header is more than three feet from the player, the Disclosure Message must be repeated in the control panel of the game.
In addition, at the discretion of the coin-operated video game manufacturer or developer, a Parental Advisory Disclosure Message may also appear in the “attract mode” of the game. The attract mode is a digital message that is flashed every few seconds and that repeats an infinite number of times, without the need for a coin to be inserted. Posters and other information about the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System will be posted when feasible at locations at which children may have access to coin-operated video games. Since AAMA and AMOA, do not have control over every location at which coin-operated video games are available to children, we are working with allied organizations and the trade press to heighten industry awareness of the need to implement all aspects of the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System.
Q: Where can I obtain additional information about the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System, including additional copies of this Kit, posters, or the Parental Advisory Disclosure Message stickers to be placed on coin-operated video games?
A: Additional information about the Coin-Operated Video Game Parental Advisory System may be obtained by contacting Jennifer Anker at email@example.com or 847.290.9088. To place an order for stickers and/or posters, please return the completed PAS Sticker & Poster Order Form via fax to 847.290.9121 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.