Brazilian listings for CD Projekt Red’s upcoming game Cyberpunk 2077 recently displayed the rating that the game would be released within the country. The rating was 18+ and has been taken down, but the posting can still be found on Reddit. The translations for the reasoning behind the rating aren’t perfect, but they clearly include elements such as blood and mutilation, suicide, and intense sexual relations. CD Projekt has yet to comment on this rating, as official ratings for the game are yet to be released, but lead quest designer Pawel Sasko seemed to confirm all these elements in a tweet asking why people were so surprised because obviously CD doesn’t f**k around (his words).
You surprised? 😏
We don’t fuck around. https://t.co/JVh851BaOI
— Paweł Sasko (@PaweSasko) April 25, 2020
CD revealed last year that there would indeed be detailed sex scenes (this shouldn’t be a surprise if you have played The Witcher) but interestingly, in Cyberpunk, they will be in first person, and were captured using motion capture, which likely means – along with graphics improvements – that they will be far more realistic. Now the issue with this is that CD could be flirting with an AO (Adults Only) rating rather than an M (Mature) rating. ESRB’s M rating is 17+ while AO is 18+, and this may seem like a small difference, but it could mean a lot for the game’s sales. Most games will stay within the bounds of M no matter how much violence they include, but sexual content is different. An M rating allows for “sexual content” but not “graphic sexual content.”
Now the question is, why does this matter? Well, while AO games can be sold on Steam and some other platforms, major stores won’t sell them, and neither will Xbox Live or the PlayStation Store. This is why games like Grand Theft Auto toned down sexuality just enough to always land within M so as to reach the full audience that wants to buy their game.
Just because the game is rated 18+ in Brazil, however, does not mean it will be rated AO, as games such as Fallout: New Vegas and the Grand Theft Auto games are also rated 18+ in Brazil. Also, CD boss Adam Badowski announced earlier this month that the game had been rated by most rating boards, and he seems happy with the results, so we will probably be looking at an M game when it releases in September.
Very happy to share some progress on this — Cyberpunk 2077 has already been rated by the vast majority of rating boards around the world. https://t.co/gwUXYOXpyb
— Adam Badowski (@AdamBadowski) April 9, 2020