The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) ratings provide concise and objective information about the content in video games and apps so consumers, especially parents, can make informed choices. ESRB ratings have three parts:
Rating Categories suggest age appropriateness;
Content Descriptors indicate content that may have triggered a particular rating and/or may be of interest or concern;
Interactive Elements highlight interactive or online features of a product, including users' ability to interact with each other, the sharing of users' location with other users, if purchases of digital goods or services are offered, and/or if unrestricted internet access is provided.
As a supplementary source of information, physical (e.g., boxed) video games have Rating Summaries that provide a more detailed description of the content that factored into the rating assigned.
Content is generally suitable for all ages. May contain minimal cartoon, fantasy or mild violence and/or infrequent use of mild language.
Content is generally suitable for ages 10 and up. May contain more cartoon, fantasy or mild violence, mild language and/or minimal suggestive themes.
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.
Content is generally suitable for persons ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.
Content suitable for adults 18 years and up. May include prolonged scenes of intense violence, graphic sexual content and/or gambling with real currency.
Not yet assigned a final ESRB rating. Appears only in advertising, marketing and promotional materials and related to a game that is expected to carry an ESRB rating, and should be replaced by a game's rating once it has been assigned.
Note: Content Descriptors are applied relative to the Rating Category assigned and are not intended to be a complete listing or content. When a content descriptor is preceded by the term "Mild", it conveys low frequency, intensity, or severity.
For the most up to date list of content descriptors and definitions, go to www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_guide.jsp
In-Game Purchases -In-game offers to purchase digital goods or premiums with real world currency, including but not limited to bonus levels, skins, surprise items (such as item packs, loot boxes, mystery awards), music, virtual coins and other forms of in-game currency, subscriptions, season passes and upgrades (e.g., to disable ads).
Users Interact -Indicates possible exposure to unfiltered/uncensored user-generated content, including user-to-user communications and media sharing via social media and networks
Shares Location -Includes the ability to display the user's location to other users of the app
Unrestricted Internet -Product provides access to the internet
"Music Downloads Not Rated by the ESRB" -Warns that songs downloaded as add-ons for music-based games have not been rated and that their content has not been considered in the ESRB rating assignment.
The ESRB is a non-profit, self-regulatory body established in 1994 by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA). ESRB independently assigns computer and video game content ratings, enforces advertising guidelines, and helps ensure responsible online privacy practices for the interactive entertainment software industry.