Factorio age rating?

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Factorio age rating?

Post by Naelyr » Mon Aug 12, 2019 6:25 pm

I showed factorio to a friend of mine, and now we want to play together. However his mum really wants to know how old you have to be to play it (my friend is 13). If I could just have a semi-official answer to satisfy her and let him play, that would be enough.

Thank you!

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by DaveMcW » Mon Aug 12, 2019 6:55 pm

Factorio does not sell in physical stores, so it is not required to be age rated. Therefore there is no official answer.

But it would probably get a ESRB Teen rating due to alien combat (violence and blood).
ESRB Teen
Content is generally suitable for ages 13 and up. May contain violence, suggestive themes, crude humor, minimal blood, simulated gambling and/or infrequent use of strong language.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Bilka » Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:28 pm

https://factorio.com/terms-of-service wrote:USE OF SERVICE

Children may use an account established by their parent or legal guardian with the approval of such a person.
The game doesn't contain explicit violence and we believe it is appropriate for children from 12 years.
I'm an admin over at https://wiki.factorio.com. Feel free to contact me if there's anything wrong (or right) with it.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by J-H » Wed Aug 14, 2019 2:52 pm

I am a very conservative man. We don't have TV in our house, etc. I sometimes play Factorio with my 5 year old and my 3 year old sitting on my lap. They like trains, robots, lasers, giant bugs, etc.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by eradicator » Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:35 pm

Bilka wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:28 pm
https://factorio.com/terms-of-service wrote:USE OF SERVICE

Children may use an account established by their parent or legal guardian with the approval of such a person.
The game doesn't contain explicit violence and we believe it is appropriate for children from 12 years.
TIL massacaring hordes of biters isn't "explicit" violence. Must be because the blood puddles they leave are purple not red. If you're really concerned you could try one of the non-violence/non-military mods. Or invite his mother to watch/play along and judge for herself (which imho any parent should do...).
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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Impatient » Wed Aug 14, 2019 5:58 pm

J-H wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 2:52 pm
I am a very conservative man. We don't have TV in our house, etc. I sometimes play Factorio with my 5 year old and my 3 year old sitting on my lap. They like trains, robots, lasers, giant bugs, etc.
Do you also try to explain to them, that they are the evil ones in this narration, performing genocide on the native population?

In John Carpenters 1982 "The Thing", Kurt Russel clearly showed us, that an alien, crashlanding on a foreign planet, killing its inhabitants and using its resources to build a spacecraft to get off it again, is evil as shit.

;-)

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by csduff » Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:18 pm

Impatient wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 5:58 pm
Do you also try to explain to them, that they are the evil ones in this narration, performing genocide on the native population?
Just play on peaceful mode. That way, no one is the bad guy. Except for those homicidal trains. They are always trying to kill me.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Adamo » Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:32 pm

People don't typically call it "violent" when a child roasts a bug with a magnifying glass.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Koub » Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:54 pm

eradicator wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:35 pm
Or invite his mother to watch/play along and judge for herself (which imho any parent should do...).
This. Best way for a mom to make a educated decision is to actually watch the most age sensitive part of Factorio (the biter fighting) and decide by herself she's OK for her child to play with this or not.
I doubt the mining, science, or actual factory building could pose any issue.
Koub - Please consider English is not my native language.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Adamo » Wed Aug 14, 2019 9:37 pm

Koub wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:54 pm
I doubt the mining, science, or actual factory building could pose any issue.
How dare you desensitize our youth to the environmental evils of industry and colonial science.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Oktokolo » Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:28 pm

eradicator wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:35 pm
TIL massacaring hordes of biters isn't "explicit" violence.
It is as much violence as is the common spring-cleaning.
Factorio is a logistics puzzle game spiced up with some tower-defense, arcade and tycoon game elements teaching the basic principles of pest control without becoming one of these boring educational games... and it has trains (no bridges or tunnels though).

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Impatient » Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:44 pm

Oktokolo wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:28 pm
It is as much violence as is the common spring-cleaning.
For the bugs spring cleaning isn't fun either.
Oktokolo wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:28 pm
Factorio is a logistics puzzle game spiced up with some tower-defense, arcade and tycoon game elements teaching the basic principles of pest control without becoming one of these boring educational games... and it has trains (no bridges or tunnels though).
I am pretty sure the inhabitants of the factorio planet are not amused about your words. Have you never seen Tron?

;-)

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Pandrosos » Thu Aug 15, 2019 12:55 am

eradicator wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:35 pm
TIL massacaring hordes of biters isn't "explicit" violence.
I think what's meant by this is it lacks detail or in-your-face-ness. Sure the giant insects go splat and you see a bit of purple whatever, but even if you zoom way in it's hardly graphic. When a player character gets killed you see even less.

I agree with Wube, if Factorio was rated it'd get a PEGI 12, or maybe even a 7.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by eradicator » Thu Aug 15, 2019 1:29 am

Pandrosos wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 12:55 am
eradicator wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:35 pm
TIL massacaring hordes of biters isn't "explicit" violence.
I think what's meant by this is it lacks detail or in-your-face-ness. Sure the giant insects go splat and you see a bit of purple whatever, but even if you zoom way in it's hardly graphic. When a player character gets killed you see even less.

I agree with Wube, if Factorio was rated it'd get a PEGI 12, or maybe even a 7.
Just for fun i googled and it seems Superhot™* is PEGI12 (‘Realistic looking violence towards non human looking characters’), but USK 16. It's a cultural thing, and i happen to be on the USK side, finding unreflected genocide (as in factorio) much worse than a few tits here and there (which PEGI frequently gets hysterical about).

*I chose Superhot as an example because it was the first thing with non-realistic graphics i could think of.
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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Nova » Thu Aug 15, 2019 3:19 am

A big reason why Superhot got USK 16 is probably because it's first person and you shoot at "human formed" things. Both is not the case for Factorio.
Greetings, Nova.
Factorio is one of the greatest games I ever played, with one of the best developers I ever heard of. Image

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Pi-C » Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:00 am

Oktokolo wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:28 pm
eradicator wrote:
Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:35 pm
TIL massacaring hordes of biters isn't "explicit" violence.
It is as much violence as is the common spring-cleaning.
I think Factorio is even more violent than chess! "What, chess? But chess isn't a violent game at all!", I hear you say. But, yes, it is, if you really think about it: It's about two kings who send out their armies against each other to duke it out (for whatever reason), and the game usually ends with the death (or surrender) of one of them. Sometimes the whole army goes down before the king dies, sometimes one player can defeat the other by cleverly sneaking through the enemy lines and "assassinating" just the other king. Oh, and sacrificing just about every unit you have -- from "cheap" pawns to the mighty queen -- in order to win the battle is an essential part of the game.

Usually, a game of chess doesn't look really violent, the players are rather calm, taking their time before making a move. Also, apart from implementations like Battle Chess (it's about 30 years ago that it was released!) there hardly is any violence at the surface, you won't see a drop of blood. It's very abstract, one can use an expensive set of highly polished chess pieces, or you could even play with a primitive set crafted from anything available (thinking here of The Grünstein variant, where prisoners make their chess pieces from bread crumbs). Nevertheless, digging down to the core, it's actually a game about mass destruction and extinction.

Factorio is on the same level, or goes even beyond chess: You can go out exterminating biters, take out their nests with your SMG, your flame thrower or rocket launcher, steamroll them with your tank, and later nuke them into the ground, if you like to get your hands dirty. But in the end, you will only be successful if you don't deal with individual biters but consider biter extermination as a necessary problem: a problem that can be solved by perfecting logistics and continuously scaling up. I don't want to invoke Goodwin's law, so I won't even mention Nazi death camps; but do you remember the Cold War, where reportedly the strategists in spotless uniforms or suits would calculate with the unit of mega deaths? Same thing: a masterpiece of heartless perfection, very advanced science and technology applied on a very abstract level to effectively take out humans globally by not even considering them as humans but reducing them to mere numbers, to a mere logistic or technological problem. So, Factorio is not only a violent game, it's ultraviolent.
Factorio is a logistics puzzle game spiced up with some tower-defense, arcade and tycoon game elements teaching the basic principles of pest control without becoming one of these boring educational games... and it has trains (no bridges or tunnels though).
Correct, and I like the game a lot for all these puzzles. Am I a hypocrite? I don't think so. I wouldn't want to be that engineer on Nauvis in reality, yet I have a lot of fun with all the puzzles. But Factorio is just a game! When I play it, I am that engineer stranded on Nauvis -- but that's just a game character, and I can distinguish between game and reality. I've also read many a crime novel where somebody is murdered every couple of pages, and I can also sympathize and identify with evil protagonists -- yet I've never gone out shooting people left and right of me. It is only a paper moon, hanging over a cardboard sea; like theater: After the play is over, the actors change back into their regular clothes and live their regular lives. They have impersonated their character just on stage, but they are not that character.

Then again, I'm quite a bit older than 13 years. It may well be that a teenage kid will be more drawn into the mire than I. So may be that 13 years old kid all this thread is about should start out playing peaceful mode, where the game is only about building stuff (though at the cost of permanently changing/damaging the in-game environment). Factorio is a very rewarding game that makes you think creatively and motivates you to play around with lots of toys and learn something new each time. Trains, combinators, thinking of perfect ratios when building production lines; devoting time and energy to minor details while not losing track of the big picture -- all of these are wonderful traits and kids should be encouraged to experience this. But it would be good if there was some parental guidance (that's not about prohibition, but about reflection!), perhaps even parents playing together with their kids, reminding them of the moral implications of what they enact in game and making sure their kids don't get cold-blooded perfectionists, that they don't lose sight of the fact that there is a real world outside of the game: A world with real people that should be treated as individuals, not as numbers, with all due respect.
A good mod deserves a good changelog. Here's a tutorial (WIP) about Factorio's way too strict changelog syntax!

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Oktokolo » Thu Aug 15, 2019 10:27 am

Pi-C wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:00 am
I think Factorio is even more violent than chess!
Impossible! Chess is well known for beeing the prototype of the war game and playing it makes it actually more likely that you want to play "global thermonuclear war" too.
Unlike Factorio - wich is a very peacefull game in comparison. You use appropriate tools to solve a lot of small problems with the end goal to clean a whole planet from some insects wich have not been kept in check for a long time and therefore are now crawling above your precious oil fields and ore deposits.
Pi-C wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:00 am
You can go out exterminating biters [...]
You actually have to. It is the whole point of the game: If you don't act appropriately if your home is infected, you will be overrung by the vermin. Keep your home clean and you will live long and prosper. It is an important lesson to be taught. You can't just leave the bugs crawling everywhere around as they will contaminate your food and make you get ill - as an educational game, Factorio uses slight exaggeration to get this fact transportet as clear as possible.
But i really don't get where the genocide is - bugs aren't human, so the term obviously can't apply.
Pi-C wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:00 am
Then again, I'm quite a bit older than 13 years. It may well be that a teenage kid will be more drawn into the mire than I. So may be that 13 years old kid all this thread is about should start out playing peaceful mode, where the game is only about building stuff (though at the cost of permanently changing/damaging the in-game environment).
While you honestly can't start early enough to show children the dangers of pests and how to keep their home clean... it is indeed true, that Factorio is a complex game wich might be a bit overwhelming at first. Starting in peacefull has the added benefit in teaching that you can't really have permanent peace with bugs. Sooner or later something will happen and then you have to do what you should have done from the start as bugs will not just leave...
Pi-C wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:00 am
But it would be good if there was some parental guidance (that's not about prohibition, but about reflection!), perhaps even parents playing together with their kids, reminding them of the moral implications of what they enact in game and making sure their kids don't get cold-blooded perfectionists, that they don't lose sight of the fact that there is a real world outside of the game: A world with real people that should be treated as individuals, not as numbers, with all due respect.
Guidance is indeed important. They don't learn to hunt or gut animals without guidance and while Factorio is designed to teach them the basics of pest control, it certainly isn't a substitute for well-educated parents wich are not only required for helping them to apply the new knowledge in the real world but might also prevent them getting stuck in the game and help them understanding the actual points.

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by BlueTemplar » Thu Aug 15, 2019 1:03 pm

Don't forget about pollution having dire* consequences !
*YMMV

I guess that as long as nobody makes popular a mod drawing jewish stars over spawners so that you have to claim Lebensraum from the vermin to get to the Ostern oil fields, we'll be fine...

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Impatient » Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:38 pm

A thing comes to my mind, when following the latest posts and interesting views in this thread:

A good example for a "non-violent" but ultraviolent game (in the sense of this discussion) is DEFCON. Winning condition is megadeaths on each side. But that game makes it clear: The real cynicism is the strategies both sides have at the ready for the case of a global thermonuclear war in reality.

Buy it, play it, you won't regret it. It is an all time gem. It is from the studio that later made prison architect.

https://store.steampowered.com/app/1520/DEFCON/
https://www.gog.com/game/defcon

Watch this video about millions of deaths: https://youtu.be/Gs3bzoYHSnw?t=265

Guess the PEGI-rating! The PEGI-rating is
7
. It seems abstract ultraviolence isn't considered violence.


I want to think, I, as a grown up and emotionally and morally stable person, I do see what DEFCON does. It is not just an interesting strategy game, it tries to convey the inhuman horrors and the cynicism of the devised strategies, dictated by the game theory to detached strategists and commanders. And it is pretty good at it imo, combining that abstract planing board graphics with the sound effects and the feedback on how many humans just died because of my clever strategy.
And now iterate on the horror. What is shown, isn't just a game. That abstract planing board does exist in reality, in several countries, complete with it's little icons, depicting missile silos, air bases, radar stations, carrier fleets, nuclear bombers, subs fitted with nuclear missiles and the targets: populated cities. And the commanders also exist in reality. Let that sink! I hope everyone sees that.

Regarding the PEGI-rating, it is discussable if players should be able to see that. Or is it ok, to just leave them with a "boring looking" strategy game, where the goal is to inflict megadeaths?

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Re: Factorio age rating?

Post by Oktokolo » Thu Aug 15, 2019 10:16 pm

BlueTemplar wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 1:03 pm
I guess that as long as nobody makes popular a mod drawing jewish stars over spawners so that you have to claim Lebensraum from the vermin to get to the Ostern oil fields, we'll be fine...
I like to call Factorio a truly american game - but replace north america with europe, indians with jews and you are at WWII.
The concept is universal and humans are really good at it. We have ethics and conscience but at the same time also the ability to easily turn both off by finding any way to rationalize the necessity of what both would prevent us to do otherwise.

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