New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings Awareness Commercial

November 25, 2008 -

New Jersey State Senate President Richard Codey (D) has teamed up with the ESRB on a public service announcement designed to remind parents about video game content ratings.

Timed to coincide with the holiday shopping season, the PSA will air on local television and radio. Codey and ESRB President Patricia Vance unveiled the new campaign during a press conference at the Statehouse in Trenton yesterday.

In addition to his long service in the State Senate, Codey also served as New Jersey's interim governor after the 2004 resignation of James McGreevey.

Of his involvement with the ESRB, Codey said:

As a father, I know parents face tough decisions these days about the media they allow into their home. There’s simply no substitute for parental involvement and responsibility, and it’s important that parents play an active role in choosing games for their children. With the ESRB ratings, parents don’t have to feel like a Scrooge if their kids want a game that’s not appropriate for their age. The ESRB is a great resource that provides plenty of tools for parents to determine if a game is appropriate or to find a suitable substitute...

 

While many parents are aware of the ratings, and are making sensible game purchase decisions as a result, there is always more that can be done to raise awareness. Working with ESRB, we hope that these ads will help arm parents with the information they need to make the right choices about the video games they deem appropriate for their children and families.

Vance added:

Video games are no different than movies and TV shows in that they are created for a diverse audience of all ages. That is why it is so important that parents remember to check the rating when purchasing games for their children. I’m pleased to be joining Senator Codey in announcing this effort to reach out to New Jersey’s parents and educate them about the ratings.

Also on hand to support the campaign was Diane Zierler, president of the New Jersey Parent Teacher Association.


Comments

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I love Richard Codey, the man is an honest politician in a state overflowing with corruption. He actually acted as governor twice: once for McGreevy and the second time when Corzine was involved in a serious accident.

The guy also brings some hilarious comentary sometimes. He commented that the ugly and overpriced Xanadu complex in the meadowlands "looks like Andy Warhol threw up." :)

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Hey, the video game industry naturally wants a public official involved in a scandal to be its spokesman, because corrupt birds of a feather flock together.

 

Codey also implicated in Property Tax Assistance and Community Development scandal

Posted Monday, October 6th, 2008 by Andy Min •

Remember how Codey had no comment before when fellow state senators Bernard Kenny and Wayne Bryant were implicated in the Property Tax Assistance and Community Development scandal? Now we know why.

Three top senate Democrats, including then-acting Gov. Richard Codey (D-Essex), had exclusive control over a $20 million pot of state funds under a special 2005 budget provision, state Treasurer David Rousseau testified in a fraud trial today.

(source)

Just keeps on getting better and better, don’t it?

 

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

As a New Jersey/Essex County reporter, I can tell you NJ.com is filled with half-informed allegations and stupidity, an overglorified rumor mill. I've been following this story for a while, posting a link you got on google doesn't make you an insider to the world of NJ politics.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

What.

Honestly, Jack, can your argument get ANY lamer? This man is simply trying to EMPOWER PARENTS and maybe help keep a few of those HORRIBLE GAMES out of the hands of chidren (isn't that what you WANT?) and you go and bring up a totally unrelated incident.

 

Also that purple text makes my eyes bleed. You're really pushing the attention card lately, aren't you, Jack?

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I thought you hated Min?

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Compared to what? You've tried to get a convicted cop killer off of Death Row and back on the streets, as well tried to get a convicted rapist back on the streets in a futile attempt to get your law license back.

Practice what you preach, hypocrite: Grow up and get a life.

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Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I played Grand Theft Auto 3 on my PS2 when I was 10 years old (Yes I am 17 now). I can't recall one time I ever committed suicide or shot up my school. I did run away from home once, but every kid does that. Video games didn't invent killing or violence. I think the ESRB is a dirty joke and should be beaten to death with a Plasma Rifle for god's sake. Violent video games will never equal violent children. DEAL WITH IT! Because you know, there are no such things as bad parents, certainly not.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Do you mean the ESRB specifically or the concept of ratings in general? Because no matter how much I might disagree with on how they get ratings on specific games, the general idea I much appreciate. Hell, I get squeemish from the gore in Prince of Persia, and with XIII I made my aunt damn clear why it wasn't that fit for her 12-year old to play. Ratings are good, blind faith in them bad. But GTA:SA and stuff have a 17+ rating with a reason, so I'm sick of parents who just blindly give it to a 10-year old and whine later on, or people who blindly claim violent games ruin our children. CHECK THE DAMN RATINGS! THE ADVICE IS TO BE VERY CAREFUL WITH LETTING THEM PLAY THEM, SO DON'T BLAME THE DAMN GAMES! It's as if you let a kid play with a gun and get upset if he shoots people with it, are you going to blame the gun industry because someone ignored the law regarding gun licenses? Prolly not. Yet people do blame games for acts of kids that weren't supposed to play them and the parents didn't even bother.

/rant

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

The problem with the ESRB rating system is that the very parents it targets (i.e. parents who blindly let their kids play any game, then complain later) are the very people who will blindly let the ESRB raise their kids for them.  Ratings are only good for the kinds of parents who have already done lots of investigating of a game BEFORE they even see the ESRB rating.  Thus, ESRB ratings are completely useless at best, and at worst they are harmful.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

To be honest I actually believe that with young children many games meant at (near-)adult gamers can be harmful if not properly compensated for by parenting. They ARE aimed at adults for a reason... Nobody will ever be able to convince me that every child can play eg. GTA without problems, it's one of the reasons why I'm glad there's a rating system and some way of enforcement, and really like the system being rubbed under parents their noses.

Attaching a label to a game to make clear to people they shouldn't just blindly let their children play it, is a good thing to me. Sure, many parents might still act as dumbasses and blindly follow (as opposite to people who might use their brains for once), but I consider this option less harmful. So from my perspective, having no rating is useless as best and at worst extremely harmful, because fucked up parents that already raise their children badly, combined with many games of the wrong time and the current 'gangsta' culture, will end up in bigots I want to beat the shit out the minute they open their mind.

I got violent from being bullied by the way, Sonic had nothing to do with it.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I still feel that the ESRB is doing all that they can. Although I get kinda angry having a politician that tries to say that parents need to watch what their kids are playing, instead to just let them know that if they don't know about a certain game, the ESRB is there if they want an opinion from a group who have seen the content of the game for advice.
TBoneTony

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I'm really surprised that people would actually attack a politician by helping parents figure the content of video games for their children.  Extremes on both sides never help but always hurt a cause.  Its disappointing to me personally to see of this extreme behavior in a community that prides itsself on its intellectual capacity.

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Gaming online since 1999 If you enjoy source based games please check out www.3pointgames.com Running TF2 and other popular games.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

The thing is, there's no evidence that I can see that there's any need for parents to be informed of ESRB's rating system.  As far as we know, parents may not read the ratings because they either think the rating system is bogus, or simply because they don't care what games their kids play as long as they stay out of their hair.  If that's the case, this public service announcement is a useless waste of money.  Even if there are parents who really need this ad, they can't exactly be all that smart (since apparently they can't look it up for themselves on the net, nor are they capable of asking a store employee, nor can they watch the kid play the game they buy for him/her), so I very much doubt if such an ad will even penetrate the layers of cotton wool or other insulation that's wrapped around their moron-level consciousness.

Anyway, it's not that we're attacking a politician for helping parents figure out the ratings system.  It's that we're attacking an ex-politician and the ESRB for wasting money and time on a PSA that doesn't really do anything useful.  There are far better ways of spending money - the industry could start by scrapping the ESRB and putting the money they save into making better games.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

"It's that we're attacking an ex-politician and the ESRB for wasting money and time on a PSA that doesn't really do anything useful." Tecnically, that's what you're doing. Of course the style and tone doesn't always make that message clear. It's the internet, we misinterpretate. Others, however:

"I'm tired of hearing idiot politicians saying violent video game will harm our children.  What a bullshit broken record."
"If only that politician would have made more of an effort to educate parents instead of scaring them about the dangers of violent videogames."
"Although I get kinda angry having a politician that tries to say that parents need to watch what their kids are playing,"

Some people blindly jump into the defensive without even checking whether or not they're actually under attack. Amen4u comes to mind, people would get pissed at other people and she'd reply "why are you saying this to me? yadiyadiya" and then not bother apologizing when people said "uhm, we were berating this guy, not you."

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Well, the thing is, the responses you criticize may actually have a point.  Although the politician doesn't come straight out and say 'videogames may harm your kids', that message is implicit in what he's saying.  Organizations like ESRB spend money on PSAs for a reason, and usually that reason has a lot to do with persuading people that the organization in question is needed.  The ESRB is needed only if videogames are SCAAAARYYYYY.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

See below.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I'm sorry... I was paying more attention to the blonde chick.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I'm just gonna sit over there and laugh my ass off, okay? =)

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Kudos!  A politician that speaks with some sense.  I love that he acknowledged that games (like films) are for a diverse audience, from kids to adults.  I don't see this as a waste of money.  I know it's hard to believe, but there are still a lot of parents out there that don't know anything about the ratings on the side of the box, nevermind what the ESRB is.  Anything that educates parents on useful parenting tools, is ok in my book.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

*thumbs up*

Nothing wrong with this inititive and I appreciate people being made aware of something rather than having it forced upon them.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Well there is one thing wrong with it, and that is that taxpayer money is going towards the government telling parents to look at a rating label that's RIGHT THERE ON THE FRIGGEN BOX WHEN THEY BUY A GAME!  I mean what next - will the government be telling us which end of the ketchup bottle the ketchup comes out of?  Will they be telling us to put blue jeans on with the zipper to the front?  Will they tell us that light bulbs screw in clockwise?  I mean these are things that are LESS OBVIOUS to the person buying the articles in question than is the bloody ESRB label.

JEEZ!

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

With many politicians and parents not realizing the bloody ratings are there, crying wolf instead and demanding limits, etc, etc, while refusing to just keep GTA out of their own damn living rooms, this kind of initiatives is unfortunately quite necessary. As such I am really glad so many instances point people at the ESRB ratings, not only will it help many parents make somewhat-informed decisions for once (IDIOTS!), but also it gives a political exposure to the fact things ARE actually done but simply require the parents to use their own brains as well.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

The thing is, I hear a lot about this supposed mass of parents who are unaware of the ratings and desperate for some way (short of actually parenting) of stopping their little proto-psychos from getting their hands on games like 'Prostitute Strangler 2', but is there REALLY a big bunch of parents with these concerns?  'Cos I get the distinct impression that the only ones really concerned with this issue are the talking heads on Fox and CNN who get paid for filling in 5 minutes on a slow news day.

I mean, real parents tend to have bigger concerns than what videogames their kids are playing - things like how they're going to pay the mortgage since the father lost his job, or whether Johnny is being bullied in school - you know, stuff that ACTUALLY makes things tough for a real family.  There are lots of things that make family life difficult, without adding stuff that merely MIGHT make things difficult.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I have no idea how many idiots and busybodies there are out there. However, just in case there are a lot, this helps. Also like they say, paying attention to the rating supports a parent's backbone.

And most importantly of all, I consider all these guys who point at the ratings and say "read them people!" wonderful PR for the fact the industry DOES in fact care about not letting children blindly play any game.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Trust me, the industry only cares about warning parents about letting their kids play certain games because the industry knows that if they aren't seen to be caring, they'll lose revenue.  If you think there's a higher motive involved, I can probably find a bridge to sell you.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Thanks for the insulting comment, I'll shut up now.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Ya i saw the same thing "Video games are no different than movies and TV shows in that they are created for a diverse audience of all ages."

Thats the first time I've read of a politician saying that, I'm amazed. Hopefully more will have this epiphany and they will stop trying to pass more dumb laws and instead just try to educate people.

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Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

"With the ESRB ratings, parents don’t have to feel like a Scrooge if their kids want a game that’s not appropriate for their age. "

Yes parents, thanks to the ESRB, you no longer have to take responsibility for parenting your child.  Now you can blame the ESRB for all those pesky game-buying decisions that your kids used to blame you for.

I think it's funny that these folks are actually saying out loud that it's okay to avoid doing the tough job of parenting.  And we wonder why kids stray off the straight and narrow.  If this is what the ESRB thinks of as good parenting, I see many problems for tomorrows youth.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Funny, you see I read that as "Mom!! Everyone at school has GTA, it's not that bad, please let me play it!" "No Johnny, the game is not meant for a twelve year, it's only meant for adults. It's clearly rated M, so you're not supposed to play it." (Which isn't exactly what a rating means and there will be plenty of parents who make a well-based decision to let someone play/read above their age, but I digress.)

You see the point they seem to be trying to make is that a parent doesn't have to feel guilty about not letting their child have a game, despite the begging. They have a rating they can fall back on, even if they don't know everything about the content of the game, they can simply say "it's not meant for people of your age so I won't buy it".

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

My point is that such decisions are SUPPOSED to be hard.  That's why parenting is a big responsibility.  It's not supposed to be something you can just do half-assed.  Again, the ESRB doesn't help parents make good decisions - it only helps them make ESRB-approved decisions while they're avoiding the responsibility of parenting their children.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

You don't make sense at all. What do you say parents should do then to decide whether or not their child should be allowed to play a game?

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Codey said that, not Vance.  Why are you so quick to rip the ESRB?  We gamers may not need it, but a lot of parents and grandparents find it very helpful.  Put yourself in the position of a parent who doesn't understand today's media.  I guarantee you'd be grateful for the guidance.

Also, ditto what EZK said, sarcasm included.

"There is no sin except stupidity." - Oscar Wilde

"De minimus non curat lex"

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

The ESRB is just a crutch used by lazy parents to avoid doing their job.  No wonder today's kids are the way they are, when parents turn over the responsibility of figuring out what's best for their kids to a corporate cartel's spin factory.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Yes parents, thanks to the ESRB, you no longer have to take responsibility for parenting your child.  Now you can blame the ESRB for all those pesky game-buying decisions that your kids used to blame you for.

That's funny, I translate "With the ESRB ratings, parents don’t have to feel like a Scrooge if their kids want a game that’s not appropriate for their age." as "With the ESRB ratings, parents can do their job guilt free!"

-Gray17

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Guilt is part of the job.  If a parent wants to live guilt free, they should have worn a rubber.  A parent ought to be willing to take responsibility for his/her parenting decisions.  If they can't, they shouldn't become parents.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

You know you are right. They should have to play every game themselves to make sure that there is no content they don't want their kids exposed to. Why should anyone tell them what is in the game when they can simply buy it and waste money when they find out the game has content they don't want the kid playing. That is the real way parents should parent.

Nothing should be convenient for parents. They should be forced to grow their children's food, build their children's furniture, spin and sew their children's clothing, build the electronics their children use. They shouldn't have any sort of convenience to make their job at parenting easier.

All tools that make a parents job easier should just be ignored or thrown out completely. They don't need them.

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Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

As a parent myself, I'm all for making parenting easier, but a parent's job isn't made easier by handing off responsibility to others - it's just making the parent lazier.  If a person wants to be a parent, he or she should be willing to do that job, not hand it over to others whenever it becomes inconvenient.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I can't view the commercial yet due to my job(Yay no flash)...

However, being from NJ... I can say this-Codey is a really good guy in the senate President. In fact, he saved the state twice as Acting Governer yet he wouldn't run. We get the crooks and he saves us.

I think he's just trying to raise awareness to parents, which is what they SHOULD be doing instead of trying to ban things and blame the companies. Although I can't see it, I can't say for sure. From the comments, I'm guessing the experts they've used make no sense.

Least someone's just speaking out instead of saying, "Ban this! Blame that!"

I can comment further when I get home later on today.

Amy Levandoski

Amy Levandoski

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Please do, Amy. We'll all be waiting.

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Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

"Videogames are no different from TV shows and Movies, they are designed for a diverse audiences of all ages."

Well done Patricia Vance. If only that politician would have made more of an effort to educate parents instead of scaring them about the dangers of violent videogames.

The only danger I see is that the parents would get easily offended because they may not be used to seeing a videogame that violent, as I have experienced by talking to a few parents in my local community.

So yeah, like I mentioned in the shout boxes earlier, I wanted to shout a word that we must to our own education as let parents know about the ESRB/BBFC/PEGI/OFLC from what ever country we come from and share our voice about Videogames.

Besides, we have got the experience because we have played them, right?

TBoneTony

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Since he mentioned that there are games meant to be for an older player, I guess that politician is not all that bad. I guess it is because of us gamers being used to the same old scare tactics of other politicians that we might have been too quick to judge him. Even I made that mistake.
TBoneTony

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings


Yup, but I rather have stupid scared parents, than stupid confident parents.  The scared ones will play it on the safe side normally.  The problem is, there are still confident ones that will buy the M rated games for their kids, then their kid will shoot up a school, run away from home, commit suicide (the boy left home alone to play halo, with his dads gun on the night stand, great idea), and so on, and then the parents blame the games for every little thing, because it cant be their parenting.

---
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How to set Xbox 360 Parental Controls

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Personally, the kind of person that I really can't stand is the kind that thinks they have the right to tell other parents how to raise their kids.

Since when has buying a mature rated game for an underage kid ever demonstrably been shown to have resulted in a school shooting, a kid running away from home or a suicide?

It's never happened, and to suggest it has is the same sort of ludicrous hyperbole that certain disbarred lawyers engage in.

If it did happen, you can bet your life that mature rated games would be banned from being used by kids the same way that porn is.

So please stop trying to intimate that your way of raising kids is right for everyone.  I'll decide when my kids are ready for a mature rated game.  When I decide that is my business, not yours.

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

Ya beat me to it, although I agree that it's inappropriate for parents to cave in and buy their pre-teen kids mature rated games, it's certainly not the cause of school shootings. People quickly forget how cruel kids can be treated in school. I remember in 9th grade I was new to my school because I had just moved into the area. I was a rather quiet kid and not very outgoing. Kids often picked on me and even the teachers did! you would think teachers would try and stop that kind of thing (one of them actually did and encouraged me to punch another kid for what he had done to me haha). Soon i started translating insults and racial slurs between the hispanic and black kids in my school so I was friends with most of them after a while. I mostly vented on street fighter on my SNES, now imagine someone without a source to vent, that kid would explode. You think it's the video games causing violence? no no, it's the unchecked cruelty of adolescent children and apathetic teachers that drive a kid beyond his breaking point.

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Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

I had a similar experience in school.

First school children older than me at that time teased me because I talked funny.

then when I started following the football, kids teased me every time my fav team lost.

I got upset and asked the teachers for help but they just told me "Big boys don't cry" as if I am meant to stand up for myself all because I was taller than the other kids.

then the fatal blow came when someone pulled my pants down and everyone called me a "hairy ape" because I was starting to grow hair, down there...

that insult led me into a deep dark depression where I just did not even talk to anyone my age for a long time, over a few years to be honest.

Meanwhile videogames for me was an escape from all the school bullying that I had suffered and with games like Pokemon was one of the positive games that I felt I could still make friends again if I was brave enough to not be afraid anymore,

I still talked to people my age and communicated with others but I was never able to join in with any peer groups because of the way I was being treated at school when I was in my pre-teen years.

TBoneTony

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings


It isnt really that mature rated games are bad for all kids, it is just the poorly raised kids.  It isn't even the majority of the parents that should get their asses handed to them for how horridly they raise their kids, it is the minority.  And you are right, a mature rated game has never resulted in any of those things, but JT and the media love to act like it does.  (what they say: doom cause columbine, halo caused VT [though the guy never played a game in his life], halo caused the one kid to shoot himself in the head, CoD caused the one kid to run away then he ended up dieing in the process)

Is porn legally banned?  I didn't think so, but maybe I am wrong...

None of this stuff applies to you anyways, unless your child has depression, anger problems, or something of the like.  So just ignore it.  It is more of the idiotic parents that are not a part of their child's lives that dont realize that billy is depressed and sinks himself into his games because his parents do not give him enough attention, and he is winy about all the other problems in his little world, and needs to see a therapist.

---
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How to set Xbox 360 Parental Controls

Nido Web Flash Tutorials AS2 and AS3 Tutorials for anyone interested.
How to set Xbox 360 Parental Controls

Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

"Is porn legally banned? I didn't think so, but maybe I am wrong..."

You mean banned from purchase by minors? or in general? I believe state law regulate that not federal, in florida I know this much for a fact:

Title: XLVI Chapter: 847.013 - Summary: you can't sell any form of porn to a minor without a parent present to make the purchase.

Here's a link to read the whole thing, i dunno if this covers what you meant though.

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Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

He probably meant in general.

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Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

ohh, irrelevant then :) my bad.

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Re: New Jersey Senate Leader Teams with ESRB for Ratings

No worries. 

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james_fudgeWhat he said :) They want to make it worse than it already is.12/24/2014 - 12:14pm
Papa MidnightDMCA has been broken since 1998. Good luck getitng Congress to do something about it.12/24/2014 - 11:39am
Craig R.At least they owned up to the mistake. But doesn't change the fact that DMCA is thoroughly broken.12/23/2014 - 5:23pm
MaskedPixelanteSpeaking of Dark Souls OMG I'M MAKING ACTUAL PROGRESS WTH IS THIS WHAAAAAAA12/23/2014 - 10:49am
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.neogaf.com/forum/showpost.php?p=144500932&postcount=740 Yup, DSFix was part of an unrelated take down, and is being resolved.12/23/2014 - 8:04am
prh99Of course had they not done such a rush on the port we wouldn't dsfix to make the game not look and play like ass. 720 internal renders aren't so hot scaled to 1080.12/23/2014 - 7:38am
 

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