Age restrictions RR2 stores vs TOS

As there recently has been some effort by @GalaMorgane to protect younger players from evil forces I have a question:

According to Flares Terms of Service ( https://www.flaregames.com/terms-service/ ) the minimum age for accessing the service and RR2 game is 13 years at least. Until 17 a parent/guardian has to review the game and allow the kid to play or not.

So then how come, when you download the game via the different app stores you were shown a lot younger minimum ages?

6 years for german Windows 10!

Or nine years on the Apple Store!

7+ years on Google play store as I hear.

So, supposed it would be considered normal a young (or even older) person does not read the TOS before playing… 

…is it not terribly irresponsible by Flaregames to allow younger ages in the App stores as they are not really allowed to use the game?

Would it not be better to raise the ages in the app stores? I guess that should not be a problem for a company really showing concern about younger players. Right now it seems like letting kids steer right into an illegal situation. It also looks like Flare is tring to make more money by lowering the minimum age for the stores?

I really like to know the answer to that as a father of a nine year old son. I am confused. Could I let him play? Would you ban him in Forum and game if he was writing on the forum and say he is nine?

Lol, that is a tough question indeed, then…

Though, I’d argue not to let him play RR2 anyway. Just the other day, I watched an ingame ad video for a free chest. The ad contained numerous TV movie scenes featuring real, naked people engaging in fairly explicit… well, let’s call it… love scenes… from various movies. No dedicated adult movies, seems to have been just “regular” movies, but the particular scenes featured in the ad looked like they’d be not particularly appropriate for 9 year old’s anyway. I didn’t bother paying close enough attention to the video to remember what particular product or brand the ad wanted to advertise, but as a parent, I definitely would be concerned about such ingame ads… especially as nothing in the RR2 game world would give even the slightest hint that such ads can be displayed ingame. 

Add to that the micro transactions and legal risks for potential under-13 players that could have their accounts + all (monetary as well as time/effort) investments in it banned due to being under-13, and it simply isn’t worth it imho… 

 

On a broader scale, I think we might (hopefully) see some general activity in the near future, regarding some new EU law regarding data usage etc, which will most likely affect, among many other companies, those offering online games etc: 

https://www.wbs-law.de/it-recht/datenschutzrecht/die-eu-datenschutzgrundverordnung/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Data_Protection_Regulation

 

You are probably right about not letting him play. Still I would like my question answered by someone from Flare. Six years like in Windows store is definitly too young and even might let parents believe the game is suitable at this age while it is not, even according to Flares TOS.

As to your mentioning of inappropriate In-game Ads, @Heroesflorian I of course have encountered lots of them. The most offensive were those of a game called “Goddess” or something, in a japanese s*xual manga style. Not hent*i, but still the camera angle was clearly directed to partly uncovered private parts of the female heroines body for the most time the commercial was running.

Not only s*xual explicit Ads are the problem here, I even encountered other problematic ones like a kind of “Earn 6000 EUR in one day while sitting at your Computer” or similar shady stuff. But maybe I should start a new thread where we post inappropriate Ads and Flare can react and ban them. As to my experience sending this to helpdesk will not lead into getting any satisfactionable feedback or any feedback at all, so the forum seems perfect for it.

I would rather have no adverts than to have adverts that could be harmful to little kids who wouldn’t understand/have misconceptions of how life really is. (you don’t “zoom” into those things on a day to day life.), unless you play those games. Anyway, those kids might think its a good idea to “earn 6000 bucks” from sitting on the laptop to be like “cool” only to lose money and have trouble. These adverts shouldn’t be posted inside flares games. I would recommend that gala looks through the adverts to see whether or not they are suitable or not “related” to rr2 enough that it might be “offensive” or contain too much “graphic” material that would result in the advert not being shown in-game.

I agree. Especially there could be questions asked about the low amount of his pocket money. :wink:

And I would rather have Gala concentrate on answering important questions in the Forum than to review all Ads. Right now there are a lot of unanswered questions in the Forum. Those Ads are different from country to country anyways, so it understandably is not easy or possible for Flare to review them beforehand.

So a thread to collect the inappropriate stuff appears to make a lot of sense.

Thanks @MagischerKoenig for the well research info.

The only thing lacking is an incident with a minor where he/she “stole” a KT card after being enticed by the many “pay of winning” adverts and this will be a big court case.

What if a minor did what I once did?

I once played with 8 accounts (with 4 @ 1mil alliance donation - meaning huge investments) - but Flare has given me the T&C’s warning. I was mad at first and written messages to the forum officials about this. My messages were never answered. I finally decided to abide by the rules no matter the lost (and the cost) - and I think Flare should do the same.

I can only blame myself for doing the above stupid things - but if a minor does the same - I wonder?

I`m pretty sure, that the Age-Warnings in the different App-Stores are not given by Flare but the App-Store owners. I think they check the Apps for that.

You guys are getting such fun ads! All I get (right now) is this lame-ass slotmatchine game.

(okay that was a joke, I hate all ads and avoid them like the plague whenever possible, and sometimes they can be pretty nasty - not just imagery/content but also plain malicious)

It’s better to increase younger minimum ages: children shouldn’t spend money for games to buy gem chests, one time offers, throne room offers, subscriptions.

Do not play with life!

This is from the entry page www.flaregames.com

How can this be for 6/9/13 year old kids? It has his guts hanging out!

I really still like an answer to that and my initial question!

And really? That slogan? I thought it was a funny mistake.
You are not supposed to guard the joy, you have to spread it!

bump @GalaMorgane

Ostrich technique is not good enough. Parents have a right to know.

bump

But it is very obvious @GalaMorgane ignores the topic and willingly choses not answer a concerned parent wanting to know wat what age his kids can play RR2.

So I have no choice but to find someone else at Flare to answer my question. Also forwarding it to a computer magazine hopefully gives me some answers.

My current guess is, the age at the App stores is important for advertising the game there. It might be about money and Flare is knowingly risking kids to play at a too young age even though they do know better. I really do not think this is acceptable at all. How many kids or parents chose a game after seeing the age recommendations in the app stores? Almost everyone, I would say.

sometime I ask if the game is not for 18+? Flare try to pass some twisted message. Like in the current festivals sometime i think if some stuff in the game don’t have a second meanings or a hiding message like this : 

we all know F don’t means friends but F*** if you remove the word ‘‘for’’ that sound like F*** is Friends and with number that look like a P**** series movie.Maybe i am the only one to find this but still this kind of message should not be in a game like this

 

 

 

Hello there,

I did not ignore you, I actually went to discuss with one of our lawyer to provide a meaningful reply.

So, age rating vary from country to country. We do not make the call on that. We send the game to private companies from all around the world that will review the game. They are the one deciding what rating the game will have in which countries. We actually cannot do anything about it, as if we were, it would be against the laws in place in various countries.

So all in all, it depends where you come from and the specific set of rules enforced in this specific country. And this is not something we have any say or action on it at all. We cannot change nor modify anything related to age rating.

Many thanks,

Gala

Edit: So, age rating vary from country to country. We do not make the call on that. We fill out a questionnaire, then the Apple age rating system and IARC for Google and Windows, generate the age ratings. They are the one deciding what rating the game will have in which countries. We actually cannot do anything about it, as if we were, it would be against the laws in place in various countries.

 

Okay, thanks for the answer. Finally. ?

I can understand this is not easy, especially as you are dealing with many different regulations and different rules for App Stores. Still, strictly speaking, if one wants to respect Flares Terms of Service, 13 years is the age at which playing would be allowed.

I am not saying it should be lowered, as I think it is a reasonable age for playing RR2, especially due to the social component, not the “brutality” of the game itself. But still. If an App Store says this game is suitable for six-year-olds this is what people will see and parents will make their decision with to allow their kids to play. If Flare is accepting those young players, it might be better to lower the age in the TOS to not create a situation that is not covered or at least could be called a “grey zone”.

@GalaMorgane

Thanks you our technically/legally correct answer.

I believe 13 years is still to low. 15 years would in my view be a better age. So while your answer will stand in court if it ever came to that I would still volunteer a moral decision can be taken by FG if the company deemed a higher age appropriate regardless of private companies telling you otherwise.

Btw, any age limit per country is a minimum age a company has to uphold, true enough. However you can as a company deviate from the minimum age to any higher age. Of course a deviation like that may grant less revenue/profits for a company so it basically comes down to getting access to people at a lowest legal permitted age for maximum profits.

 

Hello there,

I’ve added more info in regards to this in my previous reply.

Many thanks,

 Gala

Thanks for specifying.

This indeed sounds difficult, but the system seems to be flawed here. If the publisher thinks this game is suitable for a certain higher age group only, this has to be be taken into account.
Obvously Google and Microsoft can not judge those games very well.

As an example, the german Windows App store: Just look at the Difference for RR2 (6 years) and Olympus Rising (12 years).
These are in many regards very similar games, but OR has more realistic style of graphics and more naked skin for the Heroes. I guess this is the reason for the different ratings as I can not think of any other different age-relevant factors between those two. For RR2 they clearly made a mistake. If you take a shart look at it you might think it is a nice and funny “build your castle” game while it really is about something else. Like competitively beating the hell out of everybody elses personal bases. ?

So, while you are discussing those things internally, please do not forget your responsibility as a publisher towards the young people, even if it means a few less players. I think Google and Microsoft will at least listen if you would try to talk to them. They do not want unsuitable content in their stores…