With TIGRS you can rate your game for free and let your players know what kind of content they are expected to see in your game
ESRB has been the industry standard for rating video game entertainment products. You can see below example images that ESRB uses. Their main intention is to help customers to know is the content is suitable for everybody or perhaps only for adult people. TIGRS is giving an alternative way for indie games to rate themselves.
TIGRS is different from ESRB in 2 major ways. First of all: it’s free. ESRB ratings cost a too big pile of money for casual games to get a rating, with TIGRS everybody can get their game rated. Secondly: it’s rated by developers.
Extremely easy and fast to use
Developers and publishers can use the extremely simple TIGRS generator to create a suitable rating for their game. The rating is fully customizable between “family, teen and adult” and takes care several kinds of elements like “drugs, alcohol, profanity” and so on. You may test the system and then simply use the generated HTML code to show the rating at the game page. I just created a rating for my Highpiled game, and it didn’t take many seconds to complete it.
Something to consider
Naturally there’s always the problem of misuse, since everybody can give their game the kind of rating they want. TIGRS website has an email address where players can report abuse so I suppose they can quite easily ban developers if they don’t use the system properly. The other problem with this system I see is that who is going to pay for the costs? At the moment TIGRS is said to remain free forever but with Internet, there’s always somebody who has to pay the costs. What if suddenly there’s million games rated with this system – who pays the increased bandwidth (since the rating image is fetched from the server) for example?
Bottom line – try it
While I see some tiny problems, that’s no excuse not to use the system. I think the author said the whole point of the system quite well:
By appealing to the good nature of people, I hope that TIGRS can facilitate a change among free and low-cost downloadable games developers and publishers by alerting their audiences of both positive and negative content contained within their games. TIGRS is by no means necessary, but it’s important that we show initiative and responsibility within our community if we want to be taken seriously.
Thumbs up for Daniel.
Anyone interested, check out TIGRS.org.