ELSPA, the trade group which lobbies for game publishers in the U.K., plans to introduce a color-coded rating scheme.
The move comes in the midst of ELSPA’s bitter struggle with the British Board of Film Classification for control of game content ratings in the U.K.
According to Gamasutra, ELSPA’s new system is based on something that’s familiar to everyone – traffic lights.
The new color codes would be layered on to the existing PEGI rating categories. Games with 16 and 18 ratings would get a red light, a yellow for 12s and green for games suitable for young children.
Of course, with three colors and five ratings, not all of the kinks have been worked out.
The new rating system is in response to the UK government’s upcoming consultation into video game ratings on November 20 and to child psychologist Dr. Tanya Byron’s recommendations in her recently published report on the effects of video games on children.
Not surprisingly, BBFC spokeswoman Sue Clark criticized the ELSPA plan:
There is a system in place already which people know and understand and which in fact uses the traffic light colours, and it’s called the BBFC system.