LonePaladin
 member, 600 posts
 Creator of HeroForge
Sat 17 Jun 2017
at 03:21
New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
The Mature and Adult flags in RPoL get a lot of attention, out of necessity. It's important to make sure that people don't get into something they're not emotionally ready for. There's a third category (fourth, if you count 'none') that might be handy: kid-friendly.

This would be for games that are intentionally put within reach of kids 10 and under. It could include games that don't have any mature content by design, or games in which the tone is scaled down. The former example would include RPGs written for kids, like "First Fable" or "No Thank You Evil!". The latter would be like taking D&D and turning down the bloodshed.

For obvious reasons, a Kid-Friendly game can't also have the Mature or Adult flags, so it could be added to the drop-down in the GM Menu.

GMs running Kid-Friendly games would be obligated to monitor their players for inappropriate language, graphic descriptions, or anything else that veers toward PG-13 territory.

The ability to run a Kid-Friendly game might work like the reverse of the Adult flag. GMs would have the option by default, unless a moderator spots them letting inappropriate things pass in such a game. Too many warnings, and they'd lose the option of using the flag.

I wouldn't go so far as to have anyone's account limited to K-F games only. Some kids mature emotionally earlier than others, and some adults never get past the maturity of a fifth-grader. Maybe make it an optional choice on someone's User Preferences, so that a kid's account can filter out everything else.
Shannara
 moderator, 3728 posts
 Keep calm, drink more
 COFFEE!!!!
Sat 17 Jun 2017
at 03:26
New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
I don't believe that the moderators are going to be moderating games to look for PG-13 material.

It is my view that that's the parent's job, and kids 10 and under ... well, the truth is that RPoL requires that the user have their own account and password and email that is not shared with anyone.

Personally, I don't know that if I were a parent, I'd want my child to have an account that I couldn't access at that age.
bigbadron
 moderator, 15372 posts
 He's big, he's bad,
 but mostly he's Ron.
Sat 17 Jun 2017
at 08:09
New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
GMs running any non-adult/non-mature game are already required to ensure that their game is suitable for all audiences (Which would include kids).
Utsukushi
 member, 1423 posts
 I should really stay out
 of this, I know...but...
Sat 17 Jun 2017
at 18:31
New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
In fairness, there is a difference between "suitable for all audiences" and actually "kid friendly".  It's actually a pretty big difference.  To me, that's less a matter of rating, and more, is the GM interested in a younger player group?  Some people don't like playing with kids, while some games are actually aimed for it.

If there was enough use for it, I think it could be a useful thing, but I would suggest it as a Category, not a Game Rating.  I know kid - everyone - adult is a nice spectrum, but as BBR notes, a KF Rating wouldn't actually impose more limits than are already there, and people have wildly differing ideas of what is appropriate A) for kids, and B) for their kids in particular.  Also, C) who counts as a `kid', for that matter.

As a Category, it would be an easily searchable way for a GM just to indicate that this game is looking for younger players.  And since you can have three Categories, there's still plenty of room to describe your game otherwise.

What I don't know is if there are enough kids on RPoL to warrant it.

I helped my daughter set up an RPoL account when she was nine, which I think would count as a "kid" for about anyone.  I remember particularly because we needed some help from Shannara, who, I have to say, made sure I understood the policies, but never said anything, you know, judgy or discouraging, like, "Are you sure a nine-year-old is ready for this?"  So thank you for that. grin  Her interest faded after the game she joined for died, but it was a really good experience for her, helped her reading and writing quite a bit*, and she has the account if she wants it.  I certainly never regretted it.  But, even though she could be, she's not actively on RPoL anymore.

For the most part, and noting that an old rPoll puts our `arguably-a-kid' demographic at only 6.9%, I think you can usually tell pretty easily which games are kid friendly and which ones aren't.  Or, more to the point, given the rules, kids can tell which games look interesting to them... just like everybody else.  And nobody actually has to know they're a kid if they don't want them to.  At least until they start talking about their hot new fidget spinner, of course.


*- Which were already good, mind you. I wouldn't have dropped her on some poor un-consenting GM if I hadn't thought she could keep up.
Shannara
 moderator, 3729 posts
 Keep calm, drink more
 COFFEE!!!!
Sat 17 Jun 2017
at 18:55
New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
Anyone is free to make their game 'kid friendly' if they want to -- but they need to be the ones taking responsibility for it being, and remaining, so -- and determining exactly what that is for their game (so long as it follows site rules).

There are legal and moral obligations that are involved in keeping minors out of adult games to the best of our ability, but, IMO, there are no legal and moral obligations to enforce some kind of arbitrary standards for games to be suitable for kids under X, whatever X may be.

I'd fully support the addition of a Category for it to make it searchable, if there'd be enough use -- or even a rating, with the understanding that 'kid friendly' is an arbitrary guideline that the site takes no responsibility to enforce other than to keep adult game material out of it, exactly like the 'Mature' rating.

And, Utsukushi, you are welcome.  I tend to believe that other people are much more suited to know what their kids can/can't handle than I am.

I'm sure there are some people who would've seen my parents drawn and quartered because I watched my first horror movie at the age of 5, and read anything I wanted from the moment I learned how to read.  At 9 & 10, I was reading adult level books, with plenty of sexual content.  I still remember a few books that I read around Junior High age that involved a good bit of most things RPoL doesn't allow at all, even in adult games. Despite that, I graduated Valedictorian of my high school class, remained 'pure as the driven snow' until after my 18th birthday, my worst criminal offense is speeding, and I don't regret one minute of my early exposure to literary things adult.

LonePaladin
 member, 602 posts
 Creator of HeroForge
Sun 18 Jun 2017
at 04:13
Re: New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
Shannara:
I'd fully support the addition of a Category for it to make it searchable

The reason I suggested a rating, rather than a category, was to prevent things like someone making an Adult-rated game and then labeling it "kid friendly".
Samus Aran
 member, 331 posts
 Author, game designer
 Part-time Metroid fighter
Sun 18 Jun 2017
at 04:27
Re: New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
I suspect that's the kind of thing that would quickly sort itself out through reports and the like. We sort of have to be self-policing there.
Gaffer
 member, 1476 posts
 Ocoee FL
 40 yrs of RPGs
Sat 24 Jun 2017
at 14:33
Re: New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
Does anyone worry that a malefactor could use a Kid Friendly tag as bait for a nefarious purpose?

This message was last edited by the user at 21:04, Sat 24 June.

Merevel
 member, 1173 posts
 The Unlucky Gamer
Sat 24 Jun 2017
at 15:15
Re: New Game Rating: Kid-Friendly
In reply to LonePaladin (msg # 6):

The chamber of lost souls already shows people do that in other age ratings games. Why add another catagory?