There are Early Childhood, Everyone, Everyone, 10 and up, Teens, Mature 17+ , and Adult Only 18+. Most parents just buy the M rated games and give them to their kid. And is the AO rating really necessary? It's just one age over 17. Also some games are rated RP so they don't know what to rate it
It's the role of the parents to monitor and control what content their children see. Every parent has the right to make that decision for their family. I see no reason for any other organization to be involved in that process. Before you let your kids play a game Google it to check for things you disapprove of.
At a young age many children have seen violence and gore, wether it be in the news, a show, our a Game they've probably seen it. Also it depends on the family and what they want to teach their kids about. If they want to expose their kids to games rated 17+ they should be able to.
I hesitate to abolish the practice entirely as it lends useful information for those illiterate in the genre, like parents who don't play much and buy for their children. It is, however, not the best nor most accurate way to rate a video-game. I certainly wouldn't want to see it in the hands of the government, as it is in Australia. That would lead, inevitably, to censorship, higher price tags, and discourage designers from entering the market.
It has an overview of what's in the game. It can be useful for parents, but if they are looking for detailed information they should use common sense media, a non profit organization. Common Sense Media has age ratings by their critics and accurate descriptions of content as well as ratings of a certain area of content like violence. Some parents don't care, but others do and need to know what is in certain video games to decide if it's apprioaite for their children. Different parents have different opinions.
Some games may be made differently but giving parents an idea on what they're purchasing or agreeing to let their child purchase is great. I don't think that a child acting out something is an issue unless they're physically harming somebody. It is just there as a last minute warning in case you don't think a game is suitable for your child.
In other words, we don't want 3 year old kids acting out 'Call Of Duty', 'cause who knows what'll happen next? Nothing good, I can guess. And what if a kid sees some random 18+ game, plays it (even though they're 6) and IT JUST HAPPENS TO BE BLOOD + GUTS + MORE BLOOD + MORE GUTS SO THEY GET SCARED OUT OF THEIR PUNY SOULS!
Trust me... We don't want 3 year olds playing games for 18+ year olds. I mean, how would you react if you saw a random group of toddlers acting like they're in call of duty? You'd be quite mortified. And it might even attract the cops attention... And it would be extremely weird seeing a 3 year old in juvie. So, lets just avoid this situation by doing what we've been doing for times past.
While some parents might not care what their kids are exposed to, there are also many who look at the ratings to make sure that their children are not exposed to anything that they think is extremely offensive. Parents of young kids don't want them exposed to cussing, sex, and violence in their own home any more than if they were to go to the movies to watch something there.
There are people who get offended and scared from certain content so I think there should be at least some warning. It's kind of like movies. People are warned for language, violence, sexual content, drugs, and smoking scenes so people should be warned about that for video games. There isn't a big difference between the two but there is still wiggle room for what should be don, warnings should still be the same.
They will allow little kids to the movies when it is rated R and they will get scared and have nightmares are see inappropriate things. It is so stupid if little kids go they might not be able to handle their feelings. It is stupid enough that they sometimes let little kids.
I do think believe that most parent will just give M rated games to their kids, but if the parents don't want their kids playing those games, they at least have a heads-up as to what they do and don't want their kids to play. So don't get rid of it, even if parents will just get their kids M rated games.