Video games, like films, are given age ratings based on how much language, violence, gore and sex they have. Contrary to what the media believes, video games don't encourage violence, but there are certain things that young children shouldn't see or hear.
However, in recent years children have been given more leeway, as a lot of parents allow them to play games rated 15 or 18. Although this isn't too bad with some games, here are five games you definitely shouldn't let your kids play.
5. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
Considered to be one of the most controversial games of the last ten years, Modern Warfare 2 was slated in the news for having a skip-able level ("No Russian") where the player is a terrorist, and murders an airport full of innocent people.
Although the level is optional, and the player doesn't actually have to pull the trigger to get through the mission, this level made the game particularly violent and almost got it banned in several countries. Furthermore, there is a level later in the game when a main character is set alight whilst still alive.
4. Grand Theft Auto series
These popular games have it all: drugs, sex, violence, swearing, you name it. Although the games won't turn your child into a criminal, as most of the media would suggest, their content gives them an appropriate age rating of 18.
The content could be potentially very disturbing, and when playing online other players are usually quite hostile. This certainly isn't a children's game.
This series was based on a concept of a last-man-standing murder game where the player has to find innovative and new ways to kill other people in-game. This is considered one of the most violent games ever made and is rated Adult Only.
2. God of War series
This series encourages the brutal and efficient murder of greek Gods. However, Gods aren't easy to kill - some deaths include the player button mashing in sequence to perform actions such as ripping off heads.
The brilliant graphics show all the gory details that no child's eyes should see.
Outlast is a first-person survival horror game. The player controls Miles Upshur, a journalist investigating trouble at a local mental asylum. The game features language, violence, gore, torture and sexual abuse.
The DLC, Whistleblower is even worse as the (male) protagonist almost gets mutilated into becoming a female. This game is terrifying and horrific, and even a lot of adults steer clear. It's certainly not for children.
As you can tell, the ratings for these games exist for a reason. Some games are a great form of escapism and fun, and we love to play violent games but not show our kids. Although they can seem annoying when we're younger, these ratings show us which games are age-appropriate, and mature games can be a lot of fun for adults. However, the ratings are there for a good reason, so we should always keep an eye out when buying games for our kids.