So why did Tecmo Koei decide to remove decapitations from Ninja Gaiden Sigma? It caused many players to go berserk mode on the developers but in truth it was all about getting a CERO D rating. What’s that you ask? Read on ahead.
CERO (Computer Entertainment Rating Organization) is Japan’s rating system for video games. It has a total of five different categories:
CERO A – All ages
CERO B – Ages 12 and up
CERO C – Ages 15 and up
CERO D – Ages 17 and up
CERO Z – Ages 18 and up only
As stated above, CERO Z games come under adults only and usually feature excessive gore. Titles of this category are not displayed on the shelves of retailers. Instead they are held behind counters and your ID will be checked before a sale to ensure you’re 18 or up.
Naturally developers want to keep away from the Z category in order to reach out to a wider audience. Now you understand why Tecmo Koei did what they did.
However, all that changes with the release of the Wii U. Nintendo’s new console will be the first one to launch with a CERO Z title – Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge. The Wii previously launched with a CERO C title called Red Steel.
Nintendo in the past has also taken steps to reach out to adult gamers while at the same time keeping their family friendly image. All Wii and 3DS games which come under CERO C or D are packaged in black boxes for easy identification. Nintendo is the only hardware manufacturer in Japan to do this.