The publishing standards imposed by Apple on its content catalogues (music, books, applications…) have been a talking point since the minute Steve Jobs unveiled the App Store nearly five years ago. The fact that Apple sells your content and that it is of quality is a guaranteed success, but you have to accept some very strict commandments. And of all those commandments, the toughest ones focus on OS X and iOS applications and games.
Valuing applications as an art form
This is what Apple says, verbatim, referring to the possibility of applications and games dealing with adult content:
It can be summarized in that applications cannot have sensitive content under any circumstances, with the excuse that there are other media (books, movies, songs) more suitable for these things. But it’s an interpretation, from my point of view, too forced.
The United States already considers the video game as an art form , in the same way that comics, movies or music are. I add that a videogame can be valued as art because it consists precisely of several parts that are already art: illustration, music… I don’t see any current reason why Apple has to position itself this way.
The company has its reasons, of course, with Steve Jobs’ manner at the forefront: Apple’s co-founder didn’t want to hear about adult content for the app store, which has provided a very important benefit: parents can be reassured when they see their children opening Apple accounts on their iOS devices. And seeing what the kids wanted this Christmas, this is no joke. I doubt that Apple would have sold so many iPads if Apple had given free rein to adult content in its video games.
Super Meat Boy, one of the games that want to find their place on iOS even with Apple’s rules.
But even with all this, things are changing, and parental controls are there to regularize all this for minors. There are, in fact, already some applications that kids can’t install on their terminals because they are not recommended. It is enough that, before giving that terminal to your child, you activate the restrictions .
A few examples to see that the App Store restrictions start off absurd: all teenagers know exactly how to access pornographic sites with their iPhone, thanks to the fact that the vast majority of them have iOS-optimized versions of their web portals. It’s like putting doors in the field.
Other examples in the form of apps already approved on the App Store speak for themselves, like this video from Minigore 2:
In this title you can choose from a good arsenal for killing zombies, killer woodsmen, Cossacks, afterlife monsters and even killer rabbits. And quite graphically, it’s chainsaws, blood and guts scattered everywhere. Good for Apple for recognizing that this game also has a place in the App Store properly restricted to over 18s, but why not then make way for the rest of the adult-oriented content?
A perfect time to attack a market about to explode
Apple y su cerrada visión sobre los juegos
There are many who say that this 2013 will be a year in which the video game market will change significantly. We have an ambitious Valve eager to conquer the living room, the Android-based Ouya promising to give its share of war, the successors to the PlayStation 3 and XBOX 360 appearing in the short term, and Cupertino’s own company flooded with rumors of launching an upgraded Apple TV to expand the App Store market to the couch. And some already think that these phenomena will do a lot of damage to the veteran companies.
In other words: the video game market is going to inherit everything learned with the mobile and tablet era and all devices are going to be merged into one single entertainment experience. And if Apple wants to be up to the task, it must not only prepare the hardware that allows it, but also respect what the developer of a video game wants to transmit even if it directly attacks sensitive issues such as religion or politics.