Japanese Industry Group Cracks Down on RapeLay, Similar Games

A Japanese industry standards group has issued a ban on the controversial RapeLay and games of its ilk, according to Bloomberg.

While reports last week that the Ethics Organization of Computer Software had taken such a step were premature, the ban, which carries no legal authority, has now been confirmed. 233 Japanese software firms belong to EOCS, including 90% of the country’s makers of adult software. In issuing the ban EOCS made reference to a February motion in the British Parliament which condemned RapeLay.

Such games are a thriving business in Japan, Bloomberg reports:

The adult software games industry had sales of 34.1 billion yen ($353 million) in 2007…

Computer games containing rape scenes are readily available in Japanese stores. Yodobashi Camera Co., an electronics retailer, sells ‘Rape!Rape!Rape!’… at its store in Akihabara, a shopping area of Tokyo famous for stores popular with fans of the Japanese cartoons known as manga.

With RapeLay requiring players to assault a 12-year-old girl character, Bloomberg notes that possession of real child pornography, much less the virtual kind, is not illegal in Japan. Former U.S. Ambassador Thomas Schieffer criticized Japan over the issue in January of this year:

Only Japan allows people to possess these hideous images without penalty…  Is it not time for Japan to find a way to punish the guilty?

Although the EOCS ban lacks the force of law, Singapore’s Straits Times reports that most Japanese retailers will follow the edict.

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  1. TBoneTony says:

    I do believe that the whole controversy is silly and just plain stupid.

    IF it happens in another country, then there is nothing you can do about it.

    I am more offended by the trash and slander the news does each night. But do I try to ban it?

    No way, I just turn the TV off and turn onto something I like, like Videogames/Anime/Manga for example.

    People who go on moral cursades like this have no lives…

  2. Tammej says:

    That’s it, the politicians responsible for this are grounded.

    No video games,
    no TV,
    and no wan*ing.

    For a full month.

  3. dan888 says:

    There are two legitimite ESRB like organizations that deal with Hentai games


    This is the EOCS, the larger and more restrictive of the two.  However several large and a bunch of small companies are under the CSA, which many of the pure rape game companies are under due to traditionally less strict standards, and as of now are not effected by the current restriction of the EOCS.


    More importantly, in the past "bans" tend to be rather toothless in the long run, because the actual wording of the restrictions are not that strict compared to the headlines that were generated. 

  4. halfcuban says:

    Please. Japan is the only developed country to be labelled in the 2nd Tier in the annual Human Trafficking report released every year by the State Dept., and its unwillingness to confront its lax attitude towards sexual trafficking, creation and exploitation of child pornography, and domestic violence/rape laws does not make it some sort of flag waver for freedom of expression, but a facilitator of criminal enterprises it chooses to ignore.

    When the Japanese government and civil society seriously tackles the well-organized sexual trafficking trade, than I will worry about offending their right to free expression.

  5. KaylaKaze says:

    That’s how they got their current porn laws in the first place, leading to the dreaded mosaic censoring on all the best parts.

  6. Ratros says:

    That is stupid, outrageous, insulting, and sickening.  I just wish I could say it was untrue….

    I once had a dream about God. In it, he was looking down upon the planet and the havoc we recked and he said unto us, "Damn Kids get off my lawn!"

  7. MaskedPixelante says:

    "Dear Japan. Please accept our morals in place of your own. If you do not comply, we will be forced to invade. Don’t think we won’t, look what we did to Iraq.

    Signed: The US"

    —You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

  8. KaylaKaze says:

    Then you don’t read much fiction since it’s an absolutely dreadful book in every conceivable literary way (with the possible exception of a few small parts).

  9. Ratros says:

    But the Bible is the greatest peice of fiction I’ve ever read (no I did not mix up words).

    I once had a dream about God. In it, he was looking down upon the planet and the havoc we recked and he said unto us, "Damn Kids get off my lawn!"

  10. AbsumZero says:

    Where does it say Japanese animation is called manga? Because the posted excerpt only calls cartoons manga and a cartoon doesn’t necessarily refer to an animated medium, despite that being the most common use in the U.S.

  11. E. Zachary Knight says:

    Actually, it is nothing like the ESRB. The choice to sell AO games is a store level decision. There has never been and pretty much never will be a trade group ban on selling AO games to its members.

    What that means is that neither the EMA, the organization that represents retailers, or the ESA, the organization that represents publisher, have ever issued a policy banning their members from producing or selling AO rated games.

    The decision to not license AO rated games was individual decisions of Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. The decision to not sell AO rated games was the decision of each individual store that does not sell them.

    E. Zachary Knight
    Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA

    E. Zachary Knight
    Divine Knight Gaming
    Oklahoma Game Development
    Rusty Outlook
    Random Tower
    My Patreon

  12. Wraith108 says:

    Bloomberg = Research fail. Japanese animation is not called Manga, it’s Anime, Manga is graphic novels.

    As for the ban, well in a way it sounds like ERSB, no real teeth as it’s reliant on retailers following their rules, and while most will, there will be some that won’t.

  13. TBoneTony says:

    I was just talking about the Otaku people who DO like their Hentai.

    NOT ALL of them like Hentai, only just a few certain groups of Otaku like their Hentai, not all of them.

    Also I have known some people who do like Anime and Manga to not like Videogames.

    I have known some people who do like Videogames to not like Manga and Anime.

    I have known some people who like Anime and not Manga.

    Some people who like Manga don’t like Anime.


    Some people like Anime/Manga/Videogames don’t like Hentai.

    Some people like Anime/Manga/Videogames do like Hentai of those mediums.

    Please don’t look at my words as hypocricy, I was only refering to the Otaku who do like Hentai. They are only a small group, but also remember that the group of people who are offended by Hentai are also allot more smaller than those who do like Hentai.


    That is all I was getting at. Plus as long as the Japanese PM knows about the Otaku culture, because he is an Otaku himself, I don’t see the Japanese Government cracking down on anything that has nothing to do with real life crime in Japan.

    And this is what some people in America, UK, Europe and Australia don’t really understand.

    Violence and Rape happen all over the world, and yet Hentai content is only sold commercially in Japan and also on the internet.

    Yet if you look at the countries that don’t allow Hentai content in their commercial stores, and yet they still have violence and rape in their society, then does that give you some sort of feeling that trying to look for scapegoats will never solve those problems in real life?



  14. TBoneTony says:

    the legal age of consent is 16.

    But to have sex is set at an age of 13 as long as the age difference is no more than 2 years.

    At least that is what I am lead to believe.


    I had to think about what I wat taught at school in Sex ed, and trying to apply it to what I know in Japanese law.


    I do know that the legal age of concent is deffinately 16 in Japan, 18 in most western countries and other areas will be at the age of 21.


    However in other countriues many laws will be different, don’t forget that in the middle ages (600 AD to 1500 AD) it was natural for people to be married at age 14.

    So it has everything to do with life expentancy in different cultures where some people only live to the age of 30 because of living conditions.


    And when the legal age of marridge is at a certain age, then the legal age of sex is a few years lower as long as the age difference is no more than 1 or 2 years.


    That is how I understand it.



  15. Wraith108 says:

    The age of consent in Japan being 13 is a half truth. In the constitution it is true that the age of consent is 13. However the individual prefectures have set the age of consent at either 16 or 18.

  16. gamadaya says:

    I thought that only the distribution was illegal, which is a really retared way to prevent something from happening. Also, since the national legal age in Japan is 13 (really Japan?), a lot of this "child" porn may actually be regular porn. But the average age of actors is probably below 13 anyway. I don’t really know.


    Believe in something! Even if it’s wrong, believe in it! -Glenn Beck

  17. tony selby says:

    Except that the possesion of child porn is illegal in Japan.

    However the question is do you consider cartoon characters child porn? there is technically no children involved assuming that the artist is over the age of 18.

  18. lumi says:

    The hypocrisy is just…unbelievable, for someone to get all bent out of shape over the correct usage of "manga" vs. "anime", and then to end it with the statement that "The Otaku people will always love their Hentai games".

    Saying that all people who are into anime and manga are also into hentai and ecchi is as grossly misleading a stereotype as saying that all gamers love bloody violence.  Thanks alot.

    Also, to the original commentor, regarding "Bloomberg = research fail"… the actual pertinent details of the story appear to be accurate.  For someone who’s uninformed about Japanese entertainment culture and needs to look this stuff up, it’s an easily made mistake, and doesn’t really take anything away from the story itself.

    Try to make comments that don’t cast us as uninformed kneejerk reactionaries, please?  Thanks.

  19. TBoneTony says:

    There will always be Hentai games,

    Either in Japan or on the Internet.

    But some people will never change.

    Hey instead of trying to target Videogames because they are a soft target, people should crack down on REAL rape.


    Also Manga is not animation, ANIME is the Japanese Animation. Manga is for Graphic Novels.

    Plus I don’t think that Japan would give up their Hentai culture easily. The Otaku people will always love their Hentai games.

  20. hellfire7885 says:

    No real people are being harmed, but I guess anything to put a dent in the game industry’s wall.


    What next, are people goign ot start calling on Obama to have Japan "finished off"?

    And next tiem anyone argues for a game ban they can cite this saying "even Japan does it"

  21. hellfire7885 says:

    I would go and call conspiracy theorist on you, but, there are some dickheads who really would go through all that trouble.

  22. Killj0y says:

    Really makes me wonder about the original amazon sale.  I’m sure it wouldn’t be that hard to track down the guy who was offering rapelay for sale.

    With the amount of press this has gotten it almost beggers the imagination that no one has found out who was selling the copy that brought this to the UK MP’s attention.

    What if it was a plant?  What if that guy was working for an anti-gaming group and just needed a straw man to have all the morality cops burn in effigy.

  23. Sukasa says:

    The sad thing is that all this publicity has probably done more to get to boost the sales of the game (or pirating). I (an most people) would have never heard of this game if the media and politicans had not made such a big deal about it.  Now, I can maybe understand if someone goes out and rapes someone and after they arrest them, they find this game in his home.  However, just the idea that this game is bad and no evidence to show that it causes someone to go out and rape is silly. If we are going to start banning things that might cause people to do bad things, we need to start banning lots of things, probably including the bible.

  24. Waffles says:

    Honestly, I really don’t think that an outdated game only available (and only ABLE to be available) in one country shouldn’t have garnered this much press and controversy.

  25. Rodrigo Ybáñez García says:

    This is more a matter of "morals". I don´t like neither rape games, but if they success on banning them, they won´t stop. Instead, they will start attacking other porn or hentai genres like it were "dooming" the japanese society.

    I believe virtual child porn is wrong, but banning it is gonna resolve anything. The real rape is still gonna happen. Real child porn is gonna still be produced underground.

    The cynical side of videogames (spanish only): http://thelostlevel.blogspot.com/ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com/

  26. Yellowchposticks says:

    "…most Japanese retailers will follow the edict." So…everyone but the porn shops?  Sort of like how you can’t buy porn at Wal-Mart?  What’s the significance here?

  27. Wraith108 says:

    What made me think of the comparison is that unlike the BBFC here in the UK neither the ESRB nor the EOCS have the force of law behind them, so it’s down to the retailers to decide weather to stock the games in the end. That ofcourse only really applies to the PC market as the console makers also want to nanny us.

  28. Alyric says:

    I believe, in this case, he was referring to the fact that possession of child pornography is not illegal in Japan.

    Which very much *should* be illegal.

  29. Charax says:

    "Is it not time for Japan to find a way to punish the guilty?"

    Yes, those dispicable people who are guilty of something which isn’t a crime. Punish them all!

Comments are closed.