Beer Pong Wii Ware Game Prompts Protests From Virginia School & Community Groups

The Fairfax County Times reports that Beer Pong, a soon-to-be-released Wii Ware title, is sparking protests by local advocacy groups.

The game’s T (13+) rating has been called into question by Lisa Lombardozzi, chairman of the Greater Herndon Community Coalition. Lombardozzi, who has circulated a petition demanding a re-rating by the ESRB, told the Times:

The game encourages younger kids to emulate the patterns of college-age kids.

Gen. Arthur T. Dean, who heads the Washington, D.C.-based Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America, was also critical of Beer Pong. Of the game, Dean said:

Beer pong is an activity that normalizes and encourages heavy binge drinking, shows blatant disregard for the dangers of alcohol poisoning, and can cost lives and result in injury.

 

Furthermore, promoting the video game Beer Pong in the Frat Party Games series under a Teen rating ignores the fact that many youth involved in fraternities on college campuses are not of legal drinking age and that youth as young as 13 can purchase the game under this rating.

The Northern Virginia Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving are also said to be looking into the sitiuation. Readers may recall that MADD came out strongly against the simulated drunk driving in Grand Theft Auto IV.

(GP: although, in my mind the performance hit Nico Bellic takes when drunk is a strong motivator NOT to drink & drive).

JV Games spokesman Vince Valenti responded to the criticism:

I think it’s kind of funny. The game promotes the sport of beer pong. We are not advocating drinking any more than watching cartoons or watching the TV show ‘Cheers,’ or even going bowling or to a baseball game… if anything, you’re going to be drinking less. Because you are too busy playing the game, trying to beat your opponent, to be constantly picking up a beer and drinking it.

 

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94 comments

  1. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    Those aren’t exactly acurate comparisons considering the fact that this game does not contain any actual depictions of alchohol consumption. It’s called BEER Pong. That’s pretty much the only blatant reference to alchohol other than an icon in the game that looks like a beer cup.

    -If shit and bricks were candy and tits, we’d all be livin’ large.

  2. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    Yeah, this seems silly to me. There is no actual drinking, no elaborate "EVERY TIME YOU SCORE A POINT, BOOZE SQUIRTS OUT OF THE WII-MOTE!" system, and also, just because the title says "Beer", does that mean kids are suddenly gonna be alchoholics? If that’s so, parents shouldn’t be allowed to drink either, because kids could see them drinking and emulate it!

    -If shit and bricks were candy and tits, we’d all be livin’ large.

  3. Unruly ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I’m pretty sure they tried that after an 8 year old kid stole his teacher’s car and safely drove it home.

  4. Smarty Pants says:

    I could see it now, Boom Blox: rated M for object throwing.        

    When you think about it, if these folks had thought the same exact thing about pong, it could’ve been rated M. I mean, many overprotective groups could’ve read too into it and thought it was about two drunkards passing a beer bottle to each other.

    Back on topic, I believe it depends on how much they’re going to put beer in the game. If it’s just in the title and a barely visible cooler, I see no problem. If they are going to place it everywhere they can and allow the player to make hand motions to simulate drinking, I see a big problem. I believe that if it had a lot of beer placement before, they should just tone it down for the ESRB.

    One final note, if your going to make a Frat Party Games series, you’re just asking for controversy. Hopefully, it won’t convert kids into frat boys (most probably won’t)

                                                        

  5. Smarty Pants says:

    I could see it now, Boom Blox: rated M for object throwing.        

    When you think about it, if these folks had thought the same exact thing about pong, it could’ve been rated M. I mean, many overprotective groups could’ve read too into it and thought it was about two drunkards passing a beer bottle to each other.

    Back on topic, I believe it depends on how much they’re going to put beer in the game. If it’s just in the title and a barely visible cooler, I see no problem. If they are going to place it everywhere they can and allow the player to make hand motions to simulate drinking, I see a big problem. I believe that if it had a lot of beer placement before, they should just tone it down for the ESRB.

    One final note, if your going to make a Frat Party Games series, you’re just asking for controversy. Hopefully, it won’t convert kids into frat boys (most probably won’t)

                                                        

  6. Unruly ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Where is the kid going to get the credit card to buy Wii Points online, who is going to take him to the store to buy a Wii Points card, and where is a 13 year old going to get the cash to pay for the card in-store? More than likely, its going to be the kid’s parents. At that point it pretty much becomes moot over how they can restrict it, even despite the fact that the Wii has parental controls built in.

  7. Mike S says:

    How about we just say screw it and put this one on the parent’s shoulders… No? Alright, we should definitely excuse the whole idea of a parental guardian… Stupid, shouldn’t be an issue. I can’t wait till games recieve the same equality as a form of media that movies and music do…

     

    And I’ll dominate any 13 year old at beer pong. Bring it.

  8. Demontestament says:

    "The game encourages younger kids to emulate the patterns of college-age kids."

    Where exactly does the game do that? From the video all I saw were a bunch of adults playing a game where you throw a ping pong ball into plastic cups. Where is the beer in the game?(Aside from the name I mean) By emulating patterns of college-age kids, do you mean playing video games? And what the hell is a college-age kid? Last time I checked adults were the ones in college.

    And as for MADD getting involved in this I am not surprised. You show a beer on TV, say it in a sentence on TV, show it anywhere near a car or in a video game and they explode with their usual idiocy that it is going to make kids drink beer and crash cars.

     

    Beer pong is an activity that normalizes and encourages heavy binge drinking, shows blatant disregard for the dangers of alcohol poisoning, and can cost lives and result in injury.

     

    Furthermore, promoting the video game Beer Pong in the Frat Party Games series under a Teen rating ignores the fact that many youth involved in fraternities on college campuses are not of legal drinking age and that youth as young as 13 can purchase the game under this rating.

    Does the game in any instance show a character having to down beers? Does it show beer at all? Or does it just show those large party cups that beer is usualy held in? Kids who are already drinking will not be influenced by this game to drink more, kids who don’t drink will not be influenced by the game to start drinking. This game is not going to make college kids drink beer, they already do that on a regular basis. It got a teen rating more than likely because it has the word Beer in the game title and may or may not have references in the game to beer. From the video alone I see no reason to rate it M.

  9. Anonymous says:

    You know, maybe the ones who raise the loudest protest, are the very ones, upset, that someone will say, they’re ability to parent….SUCKS?  Watching that video, I could not see an instance of someone holding a cup filled with any kind of liquid (water, beer, hydrocloric acid, etc).  In every instance, the person shown is an adult, or looks to be of adult age.

    As one poster replied, that if kids are getting beer, its not the company’s fault.  Its someone who is of legal age and/or someone stealing without being ‘of age’.  Either way, thats responsibility.

    No, these groups are justing complaining to get noticed.  They are like little children, whom get in trouble, because no once takes notice of them when they are behaving.  Its pure ego, and zero ->REAL<- care of the issue.

    PS: MADD should ask themselves if they see ANYONE driving before, during or after, in that video.  Otherwise, they’ll have to rename to something like ‘Mothers Against Alcholic Anything’.  In which case, I think each and every member of the group should be tested for alcholic content every meeting, and random drug testings.  Cause after all….Who Watchs the Watchmen? (er….Watch-women).

  10. Stinking Kevin says:

    I didn’t see anyone saying this game will cause underage drinking. I didn’t see anyone blaming this game for anything at all, at least not yet. I far as I could tell, this story is not even about concerns that people will drink actual beer while playing it. So far, this story is simply about a group of people who say that a video game based directly on a drinking game should receive an "M" age-appropriateness rating from the ESRB.

  11. Stinking Kevin says:

    ESRB ratings are suggestions not laws.

    The enforcement of ESRB ratings in your house is up to you, and I bet you’ll be able to figure it out just fine. But the enforcement of ESRB ratings in someone else’s house isn’t really any of your business, is it?

    I don’t really want your help interpreting the ratings for my kids, at least. Thanks anyway.

  12. GryphonOsiris says:
    A rather tacky game, with limit appeal and replayability it looks like. More than anything its just a gimic with the Wii-mote (like 90% of all Wii games mind you). M rating? I’m not so sure, but it falls into the gray areas because it is Beer Pong, not soda pong, root beer pong or water pong.
     
    BTW Dennis, I agree 150% with you about the drunk driving in GTAIV making you not want to do it. It’s the only time in the game when the patrol cars actually chase me for speeding, red light running, cutting people off, ect. Not to mention it just makes me motion sick.

     

  13. Andrew Eisen says:

    Some of you (in my mind, anyway) are being absolutely absurd.  Watch the trailer.  The game involves bouncing ping pong balls into plastic cups.  Near as I can tell, the game is rated T for alcohol references: the title and a glass of beer icon on the HUD.  That’s it.  There doesn’t appear to be any drinking in the game and the game does not come with a coupon for a six pack.

    Lighten up folks.  It’s a video game.  If you’re that uptight about your kids playing it then do your job and pay attention to what they’re doing.

    It’s really that simple.  All the tools you need are at your disposal.  You just have to care enough to use them.

     

    Andrew Eisen

  14. Unrated ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Maybe I dont see it, but people on here seem to be objecting mostly to the fact that it is called beer pong… Yet think if it was called root beer pong everything would ok. Are you serious? No one would be fooled, except maybe MADD, but past that you seem to think it would solve something. We make fun of idiot politicans for things like this, then we turn around and do the exact same thing? Changing the name does not change the inner content. "A rose of any other name would smell as sweet", either the game doesnt have any objectionable content and you object to the name itself (at which point you have no reason to rerate it) or you object to the content, at which point renaming it is NOT the solution.

  15. R_Shackelford says:

    "Ciggy Flicking" isn’t illegal. And so what if LSD and coke are illegal. It’s not like the game dispenses either substance, which seems to be the defining factor on which many here are hanging their hats.

    And I didn’t say that the legal age limit needs to match the rating (though in Europe, the 18+ M rating would match the drinking age). The ratings tiers are, theoretically, tied to maturity levels, and capability to understand actions and consequences.

    I don’t need to be in any "games make kids do things" "camp" to think that drinking games encourage drinking. It’s pretty disingenous to argue otherwise.

  16. the1jeffy says:

    "Unless the game comes with a bonus pack of beer . . ."

    I won’t buy it it unless it did!

    ~~All Knowledge is Worth Having~~

  17. Andrew Eisen says:

    As I mentioned to the other poster, all you have to do is set the parental controls.  That works for off-the-shelf, VC, and Wii Ware games.

     

    Andrew Eisen

  18. Loudspeaker says:

    If you argue this game needs an M rating then you ARE arguing that GTA 4 needs an AO rating.  As has already been stated, M is still 17+ when the typical, legal drinking age is 21.

    -Loudspeaker
    "Volume helps to get a point across but sharp teeth are better."

  19. Loudspeaker says:

    Stealing a car is a felony therefore the game would be rated M for Mature.  (GTA anyone?)

    -Loudspeaker
    "Volume helps to get a point across but sharp teeth are better."

  20. King of Fiji ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Agreed.  Just give the thing a god darned M rating and let this be over with.

     

    Its alteast better than giving GTA 4 a AO rating because people might go drink and drive.  Drinking no be for teens so it getting a teen rating is sort of a puzzlement.  xD

  21. Loudspeaker says:

    How is blaming this game any different than trying to lay the rap of teen violence and school shootings on GTA?  And before one jumps on me about, "Well GTA IV is rated M for mature."  Yes it is, but on the subject of the Beer Pong game someone of legal drinking age still has to aquire the alcohol for them if they are going to play the game with alcohol.

    If you’re saying this game needs and M rating or it will cause underage drinking then you’re putting yourself in the "Games made my kids do it" camp.  Parents need to take responsibility for their parenting.  Can teens over the age of 13 get their hands on this game?  Yes?  Is that a crime or a problem no?  Can a 13 year old get their hands on alcohol?  Will the drink it if they do?  If you answer yes to both of those questions then you have an issue far beyond the scope of this game.

    Last I checked underage drinking was a problem BEFORE the invention of Beer Pong for the Wii.

    -Loudspeaker
    "Volume helps to get a point across but sharp teeth are better."

  22. Iliad ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Actually yes, it is an afront to gaming freedom, and its not the point, alcohol has a higher age limit than any other, its ridiculous to say the age limit of the game needs to be the same as that of the activity involved in it, and like I said below (sorry, triple post) even with an M rating they could still say it encourages underage drinking, the problem with your examples is they are all illegal, there is no age limit for them, so they rate them based on basic maturity levels of those playing, I was exposed to people drinking around me since I can remember, what they are trying to do is different.

  23. Iliad ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    And whats next? E rated driving games encourage kids under 16 to steal their parents cars and go for joyrides? Bullshit.

  24. Iliad ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Meh, it depends on whether or not the game is meant to be played in a way where you drink while playing it, which obviously isnt the case, they cant give it an M rating because the actual content in the game is only alcohol references, you can drink in harvest moon, big deal, there is nothing stopping these kids from playing with soda pop if they so choose, it all comes back around to the parents.

     

    Besides, teenagers dont need ENCOURAGEMENT to drink, if they are going to aquire and drink underage, they will do it, this wont have much of an effect.

     

    By the way, what ARE the supposed to rate it? Even rating it AO is still not enough, because thats only 18+! there isnt any 21+ rating, its ridiculous.

     

     

  25. R_Shackelford says:

    New "T" rated games!

    "Ciggy Flick" – can you flip the cigarette from thumb to mouth on the first try?

    "LSD Tripper" – make warped and wacky images and share them with your friends!

    "Coke Slalom" – try not to hit the Ajax in the tight turns!

    They might be neat games, but c’mon folks… obviously not for kids. Is an "M" rating really such an afront to your gaming freedom?

  26. Anonymous says:

    Hmm, now that I think about it, what I’m getting form these people is…

    Teens drinking beer for real = perfectly ok

    A video game that features beer but no actualy drinking of it = problem.

  27. Andrew Eisen says:

    Set the parental controls.  Then they won’t be able to play the adult rated titles.

    Simple.

     

    Andrew Eisen

  28. Keegs79 ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Beer are stupid to think this will encourage drinking. Kids will drink if they want a drink! They dont need a damn game helping them. Besides, they should go after the people selling freaking beer to minors since they go after people that sale games to minors. Maybe that is too politically correct and doesn’t work in the favor of these extreme groups. 

     

  29. Anonymous says:

    Unless the game causes beer to shoot out of my Wiimote and get me drunk, I’m going to be gravely disappointed by all of this hype.

    However, if that does happen, the game will have won my total support.

  30. Brokenscope says:

    "I think it’s kind of funny. The game promotes the sport of beer pong. We are not advocating drinking….."

    Okay, in context or out of context.. that sounds a bit stupid considering beer pong isn’t as fantastical a thing as your average game setting.

  31. Uh... ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    And if Nintendo folds to these fucking nimrods, I’ll be surprised and pissed.

  32. Uh... ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    MORAL PANIC
    Clap, Clap, Clap-Clap-Clap

    MORAL PANIC
    Clap, Clap, Clap-Clap-Clap

    Seriously, they need to clam down. Teens are not likely to start drinking alcohol because of what they played on their Wiis, they’re likely to drink alcohol if they’re at a party. I’ve seen more beer ads on TV than junk food commercials in my short time on earth and I turned out fine. So relax, ITS NOT THE END OF THE WORLD.

  33. JC says:

    I don’t think anyone forgets EZK; It is just that Nintendo has been trying to remove that image for at least over a decade now, and they persist in the image through their actions, especially even more so with their focus on new potential customers (soccer moms and old people) instead of repeat customers.

  34. Loudspeaker says:

    Unless the game comes with a bonus pack of beer I don’t see a problem with this game’s rating.

    Where would the alcohol be coming from if they’re under the drinking age?  Not from Nintendo.  Most likely from Mom & Dad, friends, older siblings.

    Let’s get real here people.  If you’re not playing Beer Pong with a Wiimote then you’re playing it the old fashioned way with red cups and a table.

    -Loudspeaker
    "Volume helps to get a point across but sharp teeth are better."

  35. JC says:

    Since underage drinking is a teen thing, it’s going to happen regardless of a game influencing them or not. Kids are stupid, and will do stupid things unless you keep your eye on them and parent them.

    I don’t agree with the rating, but as one poster said: How do you enforce it on the Wii Store?

    Or what if a friend gifts it to them? There doesn’t really seem to be a way to enforce the rating and making a fuss out of it that it should be rated "M" to prevent kids from getting it will likely have an adverse effect and make kids want it more because they think M equates a fun game that their parents don’t want them playing.

    I say make kids drink beer when they are little, it’ll taste bad and they’ll avoid it like a plague. Then when they get older, introduce them to manly drinks and mixes instead of crappy beer. I say do it at your own risk though, I just find it a funny way of something that could work.

  36. requieminadream says:

    I do find it strange that Nintendo is releasing this on their Wii Ware store, seeing as how they are a relatively family friendly company.

  37. the1jeffy says:

    When did adults forget that they ignored the drinking age when they were kids?  Once again, a problem that is solved with a modicum of parenting is blown out of proportion.

    Where do 13-17 yo kids get booze if they are influenced (pun intended) by a Wii game to drink?

    Adults.  Parents or adult relatives.  But yes, blame the game for something that adults are responsible for, that makes perfect sense. Stoooooopid.

    ~~All Knowledge is Worth Having~~

  38. Robert Rence says:

    I’m going to side with the inappropriate rating on this one. You’re simulating an activity that is basically synonymous (sp?) with underage drinking.

    The major issue I have here is how do you enforce a M rating over Wii Ware? A kid can go into a store, buy Wii Points, and then activate it over their Wii and circumvent the process.

  39. oto kirlama says:

    Gallagher can araç kiralama say all he wants, but I strongly rent a car believe it’s due to his crappy leadership and E3 being a joke. ESA’s Board of Directors need to find a way to get out rent a car of this horrid contract with this Bush cronie before there’s no one left on the Board.

    Btw, I think Atari and Midway will drop out too, but mostly travesti because  these guys have done nothing ttnet vitamin or little and need to start saving costs.

     

  40. Anonymous says:

    ok this is ridiculous. news flash to all the paranoid soccer moms, dumbshit politicians, and anti videogaming activists: ITS A FREAKING GAME!!!! there is no real alcoholic beverages involved unless the person decides on their own  to drink and sincw when does bouncing a ping pong ball into a damn cup encourage binge drinking? what the hell are the idiots in virginia thinking. this is the same damn issue as the violent videogaming issue. just because i kill someone on GTA4 or GOW does not mean im being brainwashed into thinking MURDER and DEATH is ok. I know the laws well enought to assume that killing = bad and wrong. Ask any gamer that may have murdered someone if they were influenced by videogaames to do it and they would laugh in your face. my conclusion, SHUT THE HELL UP AND PLAY WHATEVER GAME WE WANT WITHOUT ALL OF THE BULL S!

    thank you. 🙂

  41. Anonymous says:

    Does the hot chicks in the video come with it? And they missed the cup so they need to show tits or gtfo

  42. Gregg says:

    Why do random morons try to be the parent for my children?!?    I don’t need some jack off from some high-and-mighty organization trying to tell me how to raise, how to protect and/or how to set moral standards for my children, that is a job for my wife and I – not Christians, not special interests groups, and it never is the job of the government.

    My daughter is oldest of three children who is growing up fast.   We just enroll her in college at 14.   She will be exposed to a lot of stuff much earlier than most kids.   But I have very little worries, why?, because we talk to her very openly about life.    Do I think this game would encourage her to drink?  No.   Actually, I more worried about the non-stop beer and liquor ads on television (remember, liquor ads on television used to be banned – but the right-wing controlled (and liquor industry lobbied) government lifted that restriction – where is the right-wing concern for the children in that decision?!?).  Anyone been to a NASCAR event lately – alcohol ads – how does that not promote drinking and driving?

    Anyway, I am not worried.   I have told my daughter to never get in a car with someone who has been drinking – I will come and get her – no questions asked – anytime day or night.    I have also told her that if I catch her drunk while she is still a minor – she better pray the cops find her first – I think she got the point.

    Stop this stupid nonsense about video games.   I have played them since 14 years old – the criticism is just hype – usually religious backed pious morons trying to tell me that I need to live in a bubble.    That’s ridiculous and they really should just shut the F! up.  I think for myself,  make moral judgements based on common sense and really don’t need your help at all in raising my children.

  43. Anonymous says:

    I don’t get it, how are they promoting drinking?  It’s just the name of game.

    If it’s just a name that’s upsetting them, then they should do something about the liqueur store across my street that has "BEER   WINE    SPIRITS" in huge neon lettering on the front of the building.

    As well, I can’t think of an episode of the Simpsons or Family Guy were the main characters aren’t always drunk and stumbling around and that’s primetime TV…

    I love this country but I really think America needs to grow a skin.

     

  44. Lilli says:

    Watch the commerical…there isn’t any drinking.  It’s throwing a ball into a cup before the other person does….Are you telling me the violence in GTA or RE or any other game out there is ok and they don’t protest that, but you better not let the kids throw a ball in a cup!! Are you serious with this?!?!  I’m curious to know if these people let thier kids watch The Simpsons or Family guy where they get loaded and it’s a great laugh.  I think these people are bunch of hypocrites with too much time on thier hands!!!

  45. Jason says:

    Its unbelievable how these idiots have a job looking out for kids yet the very problem they say they are fighting gets worse and worse every year.  They say they want to fix the world but sue parents, schools, teachers etc… that try to correct their kids.  NOW, They actually have a coalition against the Wii Fit balance board because it can tell a person if they are over weight.  Can you believe this???  As far as the rating of this game they really need to get with how the rating system works.  Its just like the movie industry…Just because it says "Beer" doesn’t mean that it needs to be rated M, otherwise you may as well change the whole rating system of everything including puting baracades in 711’s where beer is sold!  of course I wouldn’t put that pass them

  46. JustChris says:

    Our high school JROTC marching band had to censor out the word "Tequila" while playing that classic in our marching cadence. The class leader thought the song still needed a verbal hook, but not the word "Tequila"

  47. Stinking Kevin says:

    Pretty sure they already paid the guy who thought to rename "Tapper" as "Root Beer Tapper." Good idea, but you’re about 25 years late.

  48. PHOENIXZERO says:

    Then some group would try to twist it into promoting childhood obesity or something. >_>


  49. nightstalker160 ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I wonder, if they were to re-title the game "soda pong" would there be the same outcry?

    How about two different versions "soda pong" rated "T" and "Beer pong" rated M

    Simple texture swap to turn the Beer cans into Soda cans

    There…controversy solved.  Someone pay me for that stroke of genius.

  50. Katie says:

    Do these people actually have jobs?!  I love how the Tipper Gore’s in the world have nothing better to do in thier spa filled days, than to bitch about how other people should be "babysitting" thier kids.  I don’t see what the big deal is here.  There’s not even any drinking in the game.  I agree with Mike.  Be a parent.  Don’t let your child play it if it bothers you that much.  Most of the people complaining prob don’t even know what games thier kids even play!!! 

  51. MIKE says:

    I think it’s up to the parents to say yeah or nah to what thier kids do or do not play.  Grand theft auto is more damaging to kids, thus the reason I do not allow mine to play it.  It’s called parenting.  Give a try! Give it a rest already. 

  52. Anonymous says:

    This is a classic example of where parents should understand the games that they buy for their children and actually take responsibility instead of passing the buck.

     

    On another note, the ESRB doesn’t have black and white rules as to why a game gets a rating.  It is my understanding that they get a panel of people to decide what they feel a game should have.  Further, games can be submitted multiple times until a game gets the rating the publisher wants.  So if you want to rant and rave, go after the ESRB for more consistant rating systems.  However, this game isn’t a poster child for change with the ESRB.

     

    End of story, leave it with a T rating because of alcohalic reference and parents if you are that worried about this game don’t buy it for your children. 

  53. bpm195 says:

    If a parent doesn’t want their child to drink, but is willing to with their children around then they’re setting a bad example.

    Furthermore, I’m believer that reasonably realistic games tend to encourage behavior. For example, playing Skate enough a child may want a skateboard, or playing rock band may lead to instrument lessons, but a playing Flatout won’t make  you want to crash your car and Unreal Tournament won’t make you go on a rampage. Granted, I’d call anybody who starts going to frat parties because of this game a dolt moron, it still encourages bad behavior.

  54. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    How does this game glorify/ trivialize drinking games? It references them, yes, but does it really glorify or trivialize them? I fail to see how just because a game is about a drinking game it glorifies that game. If that’s so, then if a parent drinks in the same room as their child, and their child can see them, are they glorifying the act of drinking? Or is it because the entire game is based around this driking game that it glorifies it?

     

     

    -If shit and bricks were candy and tits, we’d all be livin’ large.

  55. bpm195 says:

    People do everything thing drunk and pretending my argument is that "if a game has something people do drunk it warrants an M rating" is utter nonsense.

    The issue is simple. The game takes place in a bar and makes use of peer. It simualtes Beer Pong only stopping short of handing you a glass of Beer. The mechanics of the game aren’t an issue, the presentation is. It takes place in a bar and revolves around beer and that’s the entirity of the gameplay (or at least as far as the trailer would have one believe). A game taking place entirely in a bar and revolving around beer is inappropiate and deserves an M rating. I think it’s been universally recognized that this game isn’t intended for children. The ESRB should reflect this in their rating.

    Conversely, if Beer Pong was present in a game like Pokemon as a minigame, it would less inappropiate as it’s not a game taking place entirely in a bar and revolving around beer, and would be unquestionably appropiate if it was a minigame mechanically the same as Beer Pong but themed to fit the Pokemon universe.

  56. E. Zachary Knight says:

    People play darts and pool while at the bar drinking. Should all dart and pool video games be rated M? Growing up, my brothers and sisters and I played plenty of games that involved throwing an object into some other object. So should all games based on the premise of throwing an object into another object be rated M because people do it while drunk?

    E. Zachary Knight
    http://www.editorialgames.com

     


    E. Zachary Knight
    Divine Knight Gaming
    Oklahoma Game Development
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  57. bpm195 says:

    I poorly phrased that.

    What I mean is that games intended for adults suffer nothing from being rated M, as that merely filters them to thier intended audience. Whether or not the game deserves the M rating is a diffrent story. Suggesting that a game rated T isn’t allowed to be fun for adults is just mocking the rating system.

    I do believe the game deserves an M rating for glorifying and trivializing a drinking game. Admittedly I haven’t played the game and don’t intend, but even though there’s no drinking, it’s clearly taking an activity based around drinking and making a game out of it and using that as its primary gameplay. That’s almost as bad as a game that revolves around substance abuse. At least in games like GTA4, getting drunk is only a part of the game. This game seems like BYOB Pong.

    This is a situation where they could adjusted chand the name and adjusted the theme to make use of double entendre and have it be complete innocent, but as it stands you’re playing a drinking game where whenever you’re supposed to drink you get points instead. I do realize that even if they changed it from "Beer Pong" to "Lemonaide Pong" there will still be plenty of 13-17 olds that will easily see it for what it is, but keeping this as an electronic version of a frowned upon 21+ activity then release it for 13+ is ludicrous.

  58. rdeegvainl ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    "All it is about is whether or not a video game called "Beer Pong," based on the drinking game called "Beer Pong," should receive a "T" rating."

    Should kids not be allowed to play racing games cause they are not old enough to drive? Should they be stopped from playing risk and chess, cause they are not old enough to join the military?

  59. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    Elder Scrolls: OBLIVION had alchohol consumption even before the re-rating from T to M.

     -If shit and bricks were candy and tits, we’d all be livin’ large.

  60. E. Zachary Knight says:

    That is just it. The ESRB weighs alcohol reference and alcohol cunsumtion differently. The latter being heavier. As long as the game only refences alcohol, it most likely will not cause it to pass over whatever threshhold they have between T and M.

    On another note, I cannot find any information on the ESRB’s website about this game. So how do we even know that it has a T rating?

    E. Zachary Knight
    http://www.editorialgames.com

     


    E. Zachary Knight
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  61. Stinking Kevin says:

    Nor does it make it any less a game about being drunk, as far as we know. If you are trying to justify why a game that promotes the dangerous overconsumption of alcohol should be rated "T", I believe there are a lot more people than just the group in Virigina who would step up to disagree.

    I mean to say, is this a game that merely references alcohol in passing, or is it a game that features alcohol consumption as an integral part of the narrative? Probably the former, but I don’t know for sure — and neither do you.

    Nobody said that all alcohol references warrant an "M" rating. It sort of sounds to me like you are arguing that no narrative content involving alcohol use should ever warrant an M rating, however, and that is something very different.

    At this point, though, I agree with what you’ve been saying elsewhere on this board, that without firsthand expeiencve with the game, the best we can do is assume the ESRB has assigned an appropriate rating and that the game’s narrative content is suitable even for people still too young to legally drink.

    If so, though, I do wonder why they chose the name "Beer Pong." Seems either they’re courting controversy such as this, or else sorely lacking in creativity and foresight.

  62. E. Zachary Knight says:

    My point is what you said the ESRB ratings are not set in stone.

    Just because people play a game about tossing ping pong balls into a glass while drunk, does not make this game any less of a game about bouncing ping pong balls into a glass.

    If anyone here can really justify why a game about bouncing ping pong balls into a glass should be rated M and make a convencing argument of it, I will step down. Until then, just alcohol references does not justify an M rating.

    E. Zachary Knight
    http://www.editorialgames.com

     


    E. Zachary Knight
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  63. Stinking Kevin says:

    The ESRB system is not black-and-white, set in stone, and there is not black-and-white, set-in-stone definition of "adult oriented activity theme," either. All there is is subjective judgment based on precedent and general ESRB guidelines.

    I think the "M" rating actually does sort of mean the game is for adults, or at least that the ESRB has judged its content suitable only for people 17 years old or older. 

    In any case, this story has nothing to do with "T" or "E" rated games that are so sophisticated (or boring) that they go over the heads of younger players. It has nothing to do with making a game illegal, or legally restricting its distribution due to its narrative content, as far as I can tell. All it is about is whether or not a video game called "Beer Pong," based on the drinking game called "Beer Pong," should receive a "T" rating.

    None of us can say for sure what we think to that regard, since none of us has played the game. Same goes for these people protesting — they don’t really know what they are talking about either, yet. 

    Although I agree with it, the argument that "not all games featuring alcohol use need to be rated M" is moot. The only question here is whether the alcohol use as featured in this particular game warrants an "M" rating, according to existing precedent, ESRB guidelines, and subjective judgment.

    To me, getting drunk is a key part of the real-life game Beer Pong, because part of the challenge comes from reduced motor skills due to intoxication. Same goes for most other drinking games, like Quarters. And so, if this Wii game were to involve alcohol consumption as integrally as its real-life counterpart, I would understand people second-guessing the "T" rating, just as I might question a movie like Beerfest or Cheech and Chong’s Up in Smoke receiving a PG-13 rating.

  64. Loudspeaker says:

    On that note World of Warcraft allows you to get your character blitzed but I’ve yet to see anyone cry foul on them.

    -Loudspeaker
    "Volume helps to get a point across but sharp teeth are better."

  65. Anonymous says:

    but it’s a drinking game and doesn’t even hide it.

    True, and it doesn’t help their claims as such when they say things like:

    if anything, you’re going to be drinking less. Because you are too busy playing the game, trying to beat your opponent, to be constantly picking up a beer and drinking it.

    Like others have said, then why not pull a "Tapper" with the name?  Sure it isn’t going to completely hide what it is based on or use to be, but it is just stupid of them to say such BS to defend it.

    Then there is the free PR issue, and them playing up what will probably turn out to be yet another Wii shovelware title.

  66. Anonymous says:

    I agree, the name is stupid and I wouldn`t be suprised if this game`s name was only picked just to gather free attenttion.

  67. bpm195 says:

    It’s pretty clear that the gameplay itself isn’t questionable at all, but to actually call it "beer pong" when no beer is involved is just stupid. It’s recreating a drinking game, but just not supplying the beer. It’s not teaching kids how to drink per se, but it’s a drinking game and doesn’t even hide it. Needs to be renamed or rerated.

    For the record, teaching kids the straight edge version of a drinking game is perfectly fine, but teaching them the adult version and just not supplying the booze isn’t good.

  68. Aliasalpha says:

    Tits & Candy are the 2 most glorious things on the planet already, they hardly need glorifying!

    Every time I see one of these objections, I can’t help but think of mrs lovejoy on the simpsons screeching "Won’t someone PLEASE think of the children!"

  69. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    Boy, they sure do like to throw around the terms "normalize" "encourage" and "glorify". Seriously though, this is silly to me. If someone get’s wasted and plays Super Mario, is that game considered a horrible influence on the wee sponge children? Whatever.

    -If shit and bricks were candy and tits, we’d all be livin’ large.

    EDIT: Seriously though, how does this glorify drinking? There is a reference to drinking, but does that mean it glorifies it? If that’s the case, does my sig glorify TITS and CANDY? C’MON! That’s fuckin’ rediculous!

  70. Anonymous says:

    I didn’t see anyone using the Wiimote to simulate tossing back brews. It looked more like a bouncey version of skee ball. If you used the Wiimote to actually do a drinking motion THEN I coudl see it.

    -kurisu7885

  71. Stinking Kevin says:

    And the people who follow the rules of an actual beer pong game to determine how much they drink are…?

    I am impressed that you can determine a person’s stupidity based solely on his drinking habits, but how does that tie in with this game’s "T" rating?

  72. TheTrueMrJack says:

    If you’re folloing the example of a videogame to know how much to drink you are stupid. No exceptions.

  73. E. Zachary Knight says:

    So just an adult oriented activity theme constitutes an M rating for you? It doesn’t matter that the ESRB saw no M rated content? There is not killing, no blood, no real life gambling, not sex or nudity. But because it has heavy references to beer, it deserves an M rating?

    I am sorry, but the M rating does not mean that the game is for adults. I have seen some E and T games that kids couldn’t play because the gameplay was over their heads, but nobody called for those games to be rerated as M.

    E. Zachary Knight
    http://www.editorialgames.com

     


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  74. Dan J ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Actually, I absolutely agree that a T rating is inappropriate for this game, given the specific nature of Beer Pong. It *is* a real-word game that encourages binge drinking, and it *is* very popular with underage drinking. The last thing we need is a 13+ game to introduce it to kids even younger.

    I’m not saying this kind of game shouldn’t be made; actually, the video looks like a pretty damn good implementation and use of the wiimote. But it *is* inappropriate to only give it a 13+ rating.

  75. LightWarrior ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    So well I’m guessing from all this that adults can’t have fun. That everything in the world must be made for kids.

  76. Cheater87 says:

    All I see is people hitting a ball into cups. OMG ban cups to PROTECT THE CHILDRENS!!!!


  77. Anonymous says:

     Does the game advocate playing beer pong while driving?  MADD needs to reread its own name.  Hopefully "looking into the situation" means waiting to play the game prior to being against it.

  78. Belgarion89 says:

    I dunno, I can see actually drinking beer going along quite well with playing this game.  Course, actually drinking beer goes along quite well with most things.

    ———————————

    So speak I, some random guy.

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