South Australia to introduce new legislation governing gambling in video games

Far Cry 3

By on November 19, 2013 at 11:37 am

South Australians will soon find that games with gambling in them are automatically slapped with an MA15+ rating, under a new plan outlined yesterday by the Weatherill government.

A new policy document released yesterday, ‘Building a Stronger South Australia’, discusses the government’s strategies for dealing with what it calls “casino-style and gambling-like games” available “through social media and for download on mobile phones and video game consoles”.

Under the new plan, the South Australian government will require all games with simulated gambling to be classified MA15+ at a minimum, and will push for similar changes to be made at the national level.

The full strategy is detailed as follows:

  1. South Australia will introduce new laws that will allow classifications, such as MA15+, to be applied to games that contain simulated gambling.
  2. An online Watch List of popular apps and online games that contain gambling simulation will be created to inform parents about games of concern.
  3. An ‘Unleashed’ competition will be held for the local technology industry to develop a tool that gives parents advice about minimising simulated gambling risks.
  4. South Australia will push for a national approach to the classification of games that include simulated gambling.
  5. A public awareness campaign will be launched to give parents, children and people who work with children the information they need to make informed decisions about children’s access to simulated gambling games.

You can download the document as a PDF by clicking here.

South Australia is currently the focus of a lot of attention around videogames, with Attorney-General John Rau ordering a dozen MA15+ titles be reviewed on the belief they should be R18+ instead.

Source: Thanks, Alex

25 comments (Leave your own)

SA trying to be progressive.


Get rid of your pokies while you’re at it, you know to help “Build a stronger South Australia”.

I personally don’t see a problem with this legislation though. It makes sense.



I’m the same – it’s an adult activity along with drinking alcohol, drugs, sex etc. I assumed that would have been the case already.

The hypocrisy bothers me though; a card game will be rated for adults, yet it’s quite ok to advertise a day at the horse races as a ‘family day out’.

Nasty Wet Smear

Way to pointlessly target games. Maybe we can look at closing down the casino?… No? Didn’t think so.

Of all the things that need to make a game an M15+ rating straight up, the last one that comes to mind is gambling. I spose that drugs, violence and sex are no brainers, so aren’t listed.


This man has such tunnel vision. Where is the evidence to show simulated gambling in video games leads to real life gaming? And is he going to slap a MA15 rating on a pack of cards you buy at the shops?

Like Kinkykel said, getting rid of pokies will be the most quickest and effective way of tackling the scourge of problem gambling. Ironically enough yesterday I was reading some online articles about pokies and all I can say is thank fuck they’re banned here in WA other than the one casino we have.


I’m a full supporter of games with adult content getting classified so only adults can play them I feel like this just screws up the point of classification, I haven’t played a Pokemon for a couple of generations but I remember they used to have slot machines you could play, does that mean all pokemon games will be hit with an MA15 rating? cause that seems like it would confuse parents about how the rating system actually works. “If this game based on bug collecting that as a carton series and children’s toys is MA15 then I guess Corpse Fisiting Simulator 2013 must be ok for little Jimmy as well.”


The concern is what constitutes as “Gambling”.
A lot of games are built around things like random chance, risk reward ect. Which could be seen as gambling. I think they need to be more specific in what they’re actually targeting. If its to prevent literally Gambling Video Games so games that you can actually put real money into then yeah that needs to be classified as such. But if its a game that just simulates gambling with virtual currency then its not really a big deal. I think they’re just making a sweeping assumption. Tighten it up and target the real problem plz.


FFS, I’m surprised they didn’t add a video game gambling tax on top of this.

What a load of shart.

More nanny state bs.


No mention of improving mathematics education?

Nasty Wet Smear

cause that seems like it would confuse parents about how the rating system actually works…

Heh, they can join the f***ing club! As far as I’ve been able to ascertain, the system is: “Were the board in a good mood, or a bad mood today?”.


I’m playing The Simpsons Tapped Out on my mobile and it would probably be slapped with a MA15 rating because:

1. Use in-game money to buy scratchie tickets to win more money
2. Use in-game money to make a bet at the dog races
3. And most significantly, spend real-life money to purchase scratchies so that you can win the premium in-game currency (donuts)



I recall one of my friends telling me the gambling/casino aspect of Pokemon was removed awhile ago, because of the above mentioned ‘simulated gambling’ in a game aimed at children (ironically, I have friends and siblings of all ages that play them, although most of us are from gen 1). Like yourself, I haven’t played the last few generations either, although I guess they phased it out and replaced it with all these new crazy fandangled side-activities.


Oh FFS……another friggen “Annoucment” that no one here gives a shit about!!, how about throwing money at hospitals so there’s beds to stop ramping instead of wasting our tax dollars on studies and bs policy papers…


Good idea in theory but how is “simulated gambling” going to be defined in practice? I can see this definition being applied way too broadly.

What next? Give all racing games R18+ because they encourage dangerous driving?


I’m playing The Simpsons Tapped Out on my mobile and it would probably be slapped with a MA15 rating

Having not read the article yet and probably most of the rest of you guys too it is hard to say for sure but I would based on this article say yes both this Simpsons game and the Pokemon and any other similar would have to be MA15+. I guess they could take the position to just change gambling games where that is the main point of the game but that still can always be debatable.

If they do take it to the nth degree I think there may not be a whole lot of “child friendly” games left.


Vote them out… These people do not deserve to be in control of our country. Voting for either of the two major parties seems to result in two sides of the same bullshit coin.

Rather then wasting money on ratings and review boards that don’t achieve anything or solve any problems. How about teaching children during their school years about the dangers of gambling and that the odds are almost always not in your favor and then let people make their own choice?



Is…is this Clive Palmer?!?!


Seems most of his policy decisions seem to be based on ‘gut feelings’ and ‘it just makes sense’ rather than any actual studies.



No, just an avid gamer who’s sick of freedoms being taken away or restricted. Sick of being told what I can and can’t do in my free time when it doesn’t affect others. Being told what games I can and can not play due to their classification and availability in Australia. I didn’t vote for Palmer, but maybe I should have looked more into what he stood for.

Nasty Wet Smear

Remember Gamers For Croydon? I laughed, but… I think we need them in power. :(

Leave a comment

You can use the following bbCode
[i], [b], [img], [quote], [url href=""]Google[/url]

Leave a Reply



Steam Group

Upcoming Games

Community Soapbox

Recent Features logo

Announcement: website closure

Website and forums to shut down on November 30.

Life Is Strange

Life is Strange complete season review: Your move, Telltale Games

The year's most heartwrenching game comes to an emotional conclusion.

Halo 5: Guardians

Halo 5 Guardians review: A boring game and a broken promise

343 Industries are back again with Halo -- but maybe they should have left it alone, says Joab.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

The Witcher 3: Hearts of Stone is a proper, old-school expansion

From a drunk, possessed Geralt to a battle against an enormous toad, Hearts of Stone delivers.

Streaming Radio
Radio Streams are restricted to iiNet group customers.

GreenManGaming MREC

Facebook Like Box