Mature content banned from Windows 8 Marketplace
October 12, 2012 // 9:21 a.m.
Windows 8's digital store will not sell games rated over PEGI 16 in Europe or ERSB Mature in the US.
Microsoft has ruled that apps available on its Windows store must be 'appropriate for a global audience' and must not contain adult content. This will prevent a large subsection of the gaming landscape from having a place on Microsoft's new interface.
Although there is a possible workaround to this situation for some forms of media with the Windows 8 certification guidelines going on to qualify that apps that provide a 'gateway to retail content, user generated content, or web based content' are classified as Storefront apps which might avoid this requirement, the company has also confirmed that the rules will apply to all games submitted to the Marketplace.
These digital storefront rules do not stop mature games being installed on a Windows 8 PC completely and anything can still be installed as a desktop app in the same way that we are all used to. The rules do however prevent them from being sold through the Windows 8 Marketplace, which is the only way to buy software that works with the operating system's new user interface.
Comparisons have been drawn between this scenario and Microsoft's move away from DOS when it released Windows 95 by software engineer Casey Muratori on his blog, Critical Detail. Fears have also been raised that Windows 8 will follow a similar path and attempt to phase out traditional desktop software.
Windows 8 is due for release on October 26. The new operating system has recently drawn criticism from Blizzard, Valve and Mojang who claim that it is essentially a disaster for the games industry and runs the risk of turning the PC into a closed platform.