Another Take-Two Game Gets Re-rated, For Another Third-Party Mod

from the keep-that-skin-to-yourself dept

You might remember the uproar after the rating Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas got raised from “M” to “AO”, meaning it could only be purchased by those 18 and older, after a third-party modification unlocked some sex scenes in the game. The game’s publisher, Take-Two Interactive, found itself on the receiving end of some lawsuits for failing to disclose the content was inside the game, even though it was inaccessible without the mod. Now, the ESRB, which rates video games, has re-rated another game from a Take-Two subsidiary, boosting the rating of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion from “Teen” to “Mature”. The ESRB says that not only did the game’s developer under-represent the degree of violence in the game, but also failed to disclose the inclusion of a topless woman in the game, even though, again, it was inaccessible without a third-party mod. Bethesda Softworks, the developer, disputes both claims, saying it adequately described the violence (for which the game’s package carries a warning), and that the topless woman wasn’t actually included in the game — someone created a modification that hacks its art archive and creates the image. This is getting slightly ridiculous. Would the ESRB rate Windows Paint “M” because somebody might draw some boobs with it? What about text editors — somebody could create some wicked ASCII boobs images. The point here is that developers can’t have complete control over what people do with their software. If, as the developer alleges, the topless woman wasn’t included, but placed there by a third party, what’s it got to do with them, and why should they get punished?

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Comments on “Another Take-Two Game Gets Re-rated, For Another Third-Party Mod”

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Mike (profile) says:

Re: Deja Vu

I was like. man! i just read about ESRB re-rating a game. And they did it again 2 days later? then i realized i read this article on /. 2 days ago

The original re-rating happened a few days ago, but the explanation from the company is what came out today. The details that this was entirely a 3rd party mod is what made it interesting.

Moogle says:

Picked nits

Clothesless females in the game have a bra that covers areas that some armor types leave bare. Thus, the bra-less model is used for all body armor that covers the appropriate parts to avoid the exposed bra straps

So the content in question *is* in the game. In Bethesda’s defense, it’s being used inappropriately and was never intended to be a ‘naked female’, unlike hot coffee, which was intentionally a sex minigame that was taken out (from gameplay, not data files).

Unfortunately for Bethesda, the never-to-be-seen nipples are kinda embarassing and so are removed by the first patch. Not really useful unless someone made a wet t-shirt mod (*rolls eyes*). Would that be considered porn as well?

wiplost says:

That’s nonsence. Somebody else added in the naked person when they were bored. The company never sold the game that way. Somebody added it in. Like those servers that put stuff onto your computer. The game maker never wanted it to be like that.

Thats like raising the rating on somthing bacause somebody swears on that server. It says on the box,”Gameplay experience may change online.”

Curse you conservatives. Doesn’t Hillary Clinton have somthing better to do.

Dan says:


The textures were there already. All that the mod does is removes the bra that wasn’t removable before. Besides which, to actually see the boobies you have to kill the NPC and steal her clothes/armor. Frankly, I don’t see looking at the boobies of a dead computer generated fantasy character is being all that thrilling, but to each his own.

Oliver Wendell Jones (profile) says:

Re: Um...

I remember gettting bored with Morrowind at one point and installing the nude patch for it. I went on a killing spree killing all the townsfolk and stealing all of their clothes and leaving their naked corpses behind.

It was fun for all of about 20 minutes and then I re-installed without the patches to go back to normal.

Overall I’d say it wasn’t worth the effort.

DittoBox (user link) says:

It deserves anyway

What utter bullshit.

Anyone can mod any game to include nudity, Oblivion *DOES NOT INCLUDE NUDITY* from the manufacturer, but the re-rating has *nothing* to do with that.

From one of the articles:

“There is no nudity in Oblivion without a third party modification. In the PC version of the game only – this doesn’t apply to the Xbox 360 version – some modders have used a third party tool to hack into and modify an art archive file to make it possible to create a mesh for a partially nude (topless) female that they add into the game. Bethesda didn’t create a game with nudity and does not intend that nudity appear in Oblivion. There is no nude female character in a section of the game that can be “unlocked.” Bethesda can not control tampering with Oblivion by third parties. Bethesda is taking steps to ensure that modders can not continue to hack into Oblivion’s art archives to create partially nude figures.”

It has to do with the grotesque violence and gore. Mutilated, burning corpses, rotting heads on stakes, necromancy and dismembered corpses in many dungeons.

This game deserves an M rating for the amount of gore, this re rating though has nothing to do with the mod for it. If the ESRB seriously thinks that post-rating mods by 3rd parties should be included in a second rating of the game, then I’ve lost all faith in them for producing accurate ratings.

What’s the big deal, I see this kind of crap on the average crime or docter show, the worst word in oblivion that I’ve found is “bastard” and the most (standard no mods game) nudity is a bra and panties. The worst gore is tied up, hanging and rotting corpses and some hoaky sword play.

There’s worse on primetime network television.

garfalk says:

if it keeps on going like this

then everything will end up AO. in halflife 2 there is a mod, third-party i might add, that strips allmost all the clothing off of the main female character. but amazingly, no one wants to go after this, or no one has noticed it. people are just going after the newest big games because they want the greater publicity. a game from 2000 or so, isn’t going to register with a lot of people.

i think they should just leave the game makers alone again

like in the good old days of crappy graphics.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Oh My God......

Oh My God you are pathetic. All 17 year old guys have seen naked bodys in movies or on the web. In allmost all action movies today you have scene’s where you can see boobs. And most of the 17 year old have had sex. In some comericials you can see boobs too. AND WHY ARE NAKED BODIES DISGUSTING. MABY YOUR BODY IS DISGUSTING TO LOOK AT. AND THAT IS FOR ALL AGES. HAHAHAHA

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Oh My God......

Oh My God you are pathetic. All 17 year old guys have seen naked bodys in movies or on the web. In allmost all action movies today you have scene’s where you can see boobs. And most of the 17 year old have had sex. In some comericials you can see boobs too. AND WHY ARE NAKED BODIES DISGUSTING. MABY YOUR BODY IS DISGUSTING TO LOOK AT. AND THAT IS FOR ALL AGES. HAHAHAHA

EviLiu says:

Misleading article

The topless textures are shipped with the game. Bethesda created these textures and sold them to you. These mods simply remove a bra or shirt mesh to expose the nipple textures. This has NOTHING to do with drawing breasts in MS Paint, or setting a Windows desktop image to porn. The content already existed. Hot Coffee already set this precident.

The content is on the disc, NOT a third party mod.

Louis says:

I find it disturbing that people can be so afraid of a representation of the human body (and a bad one at that, one of the biggest problems I have with TES IV is that the models are so ugly). If your kid sees a naked woman before he turns 18, I promise you, he`s not going to turn into raving sexfiend. There are a lot more damaging things out there that we should be protecting our kids against.

Here in Germany, TES IV already has a Mature rating, but not because of the almost negligible nudity, its because ingame you can pick up a sword and impale a creature, an enemy, an ally, hell, even your horse. I can understand protecting your children against violence, but not from the female (or male) form.

As a sidenote Daggerfall (TES II) had lots of nudity, and there was a general disappointment with Morrowind (TES III) that Bethesda had chosen to exclude nudity to target the (american) teen audience.

nobody says:

The texture did NOT ship with the game.

The texture did NOT ship with the game. I repeat, it did NOT ship with the game. The braless MODEL was shipped so that the bra would not clip with female armor and make it ugly. Some third party used a mod to remove the bra and add nude textures to it. If you just removed the bra, you’d get a featureless female chest.

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