Recently, South Australian Attorney-General Michael Atkinson made headlines when he refused to support a vote that would create an R18+ video game rating in Australia. The most mature rating for video games in Australia is an MA15+ that classifies mature games as suitable for ages 15 and older. Many gamers in Australia believe that the ratings system is restrictive and irresponsible and wish to make the game rating system uniform with that of movies and television.
Mr. Atkinson said, when discussing why he wouldn't vote for a mature video game rating, "there may be games some people consider too violent for for the MA15+ classification, but the solution is not to create a classification to permit even more violent games." In addition, Mr. Atkinson invited any people who felt differently than him to challenge his run for office, stating, "I am next up for election in March 2010. The state district I represent is called Croydon. I would welcome advocates of R18+ computer games testing public acceptance of my policy by standing a candidate against me. I think you will find this issue has little traction with my constituents who are more concerned with real-life issues than home entertainment in imaginary worlds."
Gamers4Croydon is the political party that was founded in response to Mr. Atkinson's challenge. We had a chance to chat with David Doe, founder of Gamers4Croydon, to learn more about his party and the gaming situation in Australia that has led to the controversy.