Think Hollywood filmmakers have a fractious relationship with the MPAA and their ratings system? That ain't nothing compared to game coders and the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB), whose apparent goal is to make sure Little Johnny isn't corrupted by the violence in GRAND THEFT AUTO — or that Big Johnny won't be corrupted by any sex scenes hidden in GTA. [Sarcasm may be inferred.]
To that end, the ESRB is releasing an updated iPhone and Android app that will aid consumers in making sure the video game on Junior's Christmas list is age-appropriate. The app lets you take a snapshot of a game's cover art with your phone, does some pattern recognition, and tells you the game rating.
Really. Ignore the fact that most games have a big honkin' ESRB rating right on the package front. In which case, you can use the most accurate pattern-recognition system of all: Your Own EYEBALLS.
Needless to say, the gaming community as a whole is pointing and laughing at this news item. Computer and Video Games, for example, is daring its readers to deface videogame artwork with…um…hand-drawn phalluses in an attempt to fake out the ESRB software. If you're of a like mind (i.e. entertainingly twisted), the app is free — do your damnedest to corrupt it.