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ESRB Ratings Guide

ESRB Ratings Guide

The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) ratings provide concise and objective information about the content in video games and apps so consumers, especially parents, can make informed choices.

As a supplementary source of information, boxed video games have Rating Summaries that provide a more detailed description of the content that factored into the rating assigned.

ESRB ratings have three parts:

Rating Categories

Rating Categories

suggest age appropriateness

Content Descriptors

Content Descriptors

indicate content that may have triggered a particular rating and/or may be of interest or concern

Interactive Elements

Interactive Elements

inform about interactive aspects of a product, including users' ability to interact, the sharing of users' location with other users, or the fact that personal information may be shared with third parties

Rating Categories

Early Childhood

Early Childhood

Content is intended for young children.

Everyone

Everyone

Content is generally suitable for all ages. May contain minimal cartoon, fantasy or mild violence and/or infrequent use of mild language.

Everyone 10+

Everyone 10+

Content is generally suitable for ages 10 and up. May contain more cartoon, fantasy or mild violence, mild language and/or minimal suggestive themes.

Teen

Teen

Content is generally suitable for ages 13 and up. May contain violence, suggestive themes, crude humor, minimal blood, simulated gambling and/or infrequent use of strong language.

Mature

Mature

Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.

Adults only

Adults only

Content suitable only for adults ages 18 and up. May include prolonged scenes of intense violence, graphic sexual content and/or gambling with real currency.

Rating Pending

Rating Pending

Not yet assigned a final ESRB rating. Appears only in advertising, marketing and promotional materials related to a game that is expected to carry an ESRB rating, and should be replaced by a game's rating once it has been assigned.

NOTE: Rating Category assignments can also be based upon a game or app's minimum age requirement.

Content Descriptors

Alcohol Reference
Reference to and/or images of alcoholic beverages
Animated Blood
Discolored and/or unrealistic depictions of blood
Blood
Depictions of blood
Blood and Gore
Depictions of blood or the mutilation of body parts
Cartoon Violence
Violent actions involving cartoon-like situations and characters. May include violence where a character is unharmed after the action has been inflicted
Comic Mischief
Depictions or dialogue involving slapstick or suggestive humor
Crude Humor
Depictions or dialogue involving vulgar antics, including "bathroom" humor
Drug Reference
Reference to and/or images of illegal drugs
Fantasy Violence
Violent actions of a fantasy nature, involving human or non-human characters in situations easily distinguishable from real life
Intense Violence
Graphic and realistic-looking depictions of physical conflict. May involve extreme and/or realistic blood, gore, weapons and depictions of human injury and death
Language
Mild to moderate use of profanity
Lyrics
Mild references to profanity, sexuality, violence, alcohol or drug use in music
Mature Humor
Depictions or dialogue involving "adult" humor, including sexual references
Nudity
Graphic or prolonged depictions of nudity
Partial Nudity
Brief and/or mild depictions of nudity
Real Gambling
Player can gamble, including betting or wagering real cash or currency
Sexual Content
Non-explicit depictions of sexual behavior, possibly including partial nudity
Sexual Themes
References to sex or sexuality
Sexual Violence
Depictions of rape or other violent sexual acts
Simulated Gambling
Player can gamble without betting or wagering real cash or currency
Strong Language
Explicit and/or frequent use of profanity
Strong Lyrics
Explicit and/or frequent references to profanity, sex, violence, alcohol or drug use in music
Strong Sexual Content
Explicit and/or frequent depictions of sexual behavior, possibly including nudity
Suggestive Themes
Mild provocative references or materials
Tobacco Reference
Reference to and/or images of tobacco products
Use of Alcohol
The consumption of alcoholic beverages
Use of Drugs
The consumption or use of illegal drugs
Use of Tobacco
The consumption of tobacco products
Violence
Scenes involving aggressive conflict. May contain bloodless dismemberment
Violent References
References to violent acts

NOTE: Content Descriptors are applied relative to the Rating Category assigned and are not intended to be a complete listing of content.
When a Content Descriptor is preceded by the term "Mild" it is intended to convey low frequency, intensity or severity.

Interactive Elements

Shares Info

Shares Info

Indicates that personal information provided by the user (e.g., e-mail address, phone number, credit card info, etc.) is shared with third parties

Shares Location

Shares Location

Includes the ability to display the user's location to other users of the app

Users Interact

Users Interact

Indicates possible exposure to unfiltered/uncensored user-generated content, including user-to-user communications and media sharing via social media and networks

"Online Interactions Not Rated by the ESRB"

Warns those who intend to play the game online about possible exposure to chat (text, audio, video) or other types of user-generated content (e.g., maps, skins) that have not been considered in the ESRB rating assignment

"Music Downloads Not Rated by the ESRB"

Warns that songs downloaded as add-ons for music-based games have not been rated and that their content has not been considered in the ESRB rating assignment

NOTE: The "Shares Info," "Shares Location" and "Users Interact" notices are assigned to digitally-delivered games and apps whereas the Online and Music notices typically apply only to online-enabled boxed video games.