World Censors

 South Africa

25th June

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South Africa's video game classification guidelines
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FPB logo The classification of video games in South Africa falls under the control of the Film and Publications Board (FPB).

Under the cheery banner, Striving to make the life of every child better without making the life of every single adult worse, the FPB rates all interactive computer games and assigns them a rating of PG, 13, 16 or 18.

The FPB strives to meet international classification standards, and for the most part their rating system adheres to what most would consider normal guidelines.

Games rated PG contain no references to drugs, no foul language and no nudity, but may contain minimal violence in playful, comic or highly stylised settings . What constitutes a playful depiction of violence is not explained.

Further, games rated 13 are similarly restricted in terms of drug references, foul language and nudity, but may contain sequences of mild violence , provided there is no mutilation or dismemberment of animal or human bodies.

The 16+ classification makes allowances for drug reference provided they do not glamorise their use and some nudity, provided it is not tied to incentives within the game. But with regard to violence, the game may include sequences of intense violence in graphic detail. Mutilation and dismemberment may occur in animated contexts.

On the surface, it would seem the FPB tolerates violence in video games, provided it is not tied to incentives or rewards in the game, for example: killing innocent people for money to buy better weapons.