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Dated: May. 14, 2012

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 Overview of Games and Their Ratings

There are many people around the globe who love to play computer games and therefore they either download the games of their choices or they purchase them from the local computer shops. People play games according to their choices and interests where the games may be simple racing games or can also be strategy oriented games with lots of violence and bloodshed. There are also games that are counted under Adults Only category and which are not considered appropriate for the people who are below a certain age.

Games ratings depend upon the type of contents a game may have and the category of game players the game has been designed for. For example, there are few games that can be played by the users of all age groups which include both kids and adults. On the other hand, there are some games that contain lots of violence and nudity along with inappropriate language and such games are not considered appropriate for the users who are below 18 years of age.

In pre-Windows Vista operating systems, there was no way to restrict users from playing games according to the ratings given to them. With the release of Microsoft Windows Vista and above operating systems, a new feature named Parental Controls has been integrated which allows administrators of the computers to restrict or allow the local user accounts to play games as per the ratings specified by the vendors.

Game Ratings and Parental Controls in Windows 7

As mentioned earlier, Parental Controls is a feature that was introduced with the release of Microsoft Windows Vista and has been carried forward to all the latest versions of operating systems released by Microsoft. With the help of Parental Controls feature, administrators can also allow or deny the local user accounts to play the games that have no ratings at all.

The interface displays a list of categories in which games can fall and the categories which administrators allow for the users are displayed in blue color. The list of categories start with Early Childhood, which means the games that can be played by everyone, and ends at Adult Only category. As the respective radio button of a particular category is selected, all the categories above the selected one are automatically turned to blue color, which means that they are considered allowed categories for the particular user.

Allow User to Play the Games That Fall under Mature and Below Category

Although, in Microsoft Windows 7 administrators can also allow users to play the games that have been rated as Adult Only, for home users it is recommended that administrators of the computers must only select the ratings of the games up to Mature level only. In order to accomplish this, Windows 7 administrators can follow the steps given as below:

  1. Control Which Types of Games Test User Can PlayLog on to Windows 7 computer with administrator account.
  2. Click Start and from the menu click Control Panel.
  3. On the opened window click User Accounts and Family Safety category.
  4. On the next appeared window click Parental Controls.
  5. On Choose a user and set up Parental Controls window click to select the user account for which the games are to be allowed or denied according to their ratings.
  6. On the opened window click to select On, enforce current settings radio button and under Windows Settings section click Games.
  7. On the window that appears, under Block (or allow) games by rating and content types section click Set game ratings.
  8. On the next window from the displayed list of categories click to select the radio button that represents Mature category.
  9. Once done, click OK to save the modified settings.

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