AfterDawn: Tech news

Los Angeles sues Take-Two Interactive

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 29 Jan 2006 18:34 User comments (24)

Los Angeles sues Take-Two Interactive The city of Los Angeles has sued Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. over the hidden sex minigames in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. When a mod for the game known as "Hot Coffee" was released on the Internet to unlock these hidden games, it sparked outrage, especially from the Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB). The game was given a new rating of "AO" which stands for "Adult Only". Since most retailers don't sell games with AO ratings, the company had to modify and release a new version of the game without the extra code.
Los Angeles City Attorney Rockard Delgadillo, accused the game publisher of failing to disclose the pornographic content included in the game. He said the company then further deceived consumers by blaming it all on hackers, which it accused of modifying the code to include the minigames. It turned out that the minigames were already present in the game, and all the Hot Coffee mod did was unlock them.

The lawsuit demands that Take-Two and Rockstar Games, the subsidiary behind "Grand Theft Auto," one of the best-selling in video game franchises history, stop marketing the games to children, pay fines and return $10 million in profits. Shares of Take-Two plunged 18.4 percent to $13.90 on the Nasdaq in late morning trade, after earlier hitting an almost three-year low of $13.68.


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24 user comments

129.1.2006 21:26

"Los Angeles City Attorney Rockard Delgadillo......" He needs to get run over by a hooker driving a convertible....

230.1.2006 1:32

LA must be upset that the Hot Coffee mod might compete with and hurt the booming sex industry that they have there.

330.1.2006 5:45

its old news. leave it alone already

430.1.2006 5:51

These kinds of games should not even be released. Of course that is just my opinion, but when I hear my 7 year olf brother walking around saying "Im gonna smoke you nigga" instead of "its'a me Mario!" I am sad. Whatever happened to just stomping on mushrooms and good vs. evil? I mean Donkey Kong was evil right.....

530.1.2006 6:10

MrToast: this game is not for 7 year olds. Hence the M rating (in USA) and 18 rating (in UK).

630.1.2006 9:11

Mr. Toast: This game in not intended for children to be playing. Its for mature audiences only. I respect your opinon, but these games should not be taken off the market. Parents need to be watching their children, and watching what they are doing on the computer.

730.1.2006 11:53

i agree

830.1.2006 14:02

WTF , if you don't want your kids seeing the game, don't buy it. There is no reason to throw around the blame game, this is entertainment only. They act like the only reason young people have sex & use drugs is because of games & tv. That is totally ludacris.

930.1.2006 14:06

Will be interesting to see the developments.

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1030.1.2006 15:39

I only play the game when my 8 year old is either a) in bed or b) at a friends house. BTW does anyone know what, if anything the suit brought by the grandma has or is doing?

1130.1.2006 16:53

This is a dissapointment to anybody who goes againts Rockstar. This is game that should earn all the plaques and awards for being a good game and not being sued because they couldn't handle to see some tits and ass. But what would I care if I see animated porn; I would rather see the real thing in marty grow which is officially in my town this year.

1230.1.2006 18:15

I might agree with you but womens liberation took them out of the home and away from the kids. If you think that parents really take an active roll in knowing that games are like this your daft. To "grown-ups" a video game is like pacman, they have no idea what they are really like and most of the time kids get them from other people and friends that dont care enough to watch their kids. I hear the "if you dont like it dont buy it" crap all the time but that isnt enough! Thoses kinds of games, as well as porn and other things should not be allowed in an educated society. If you think it doesnt affect young kids you are dead wrong, just look at what Rap has done to this generation. People lack a major amount of respect for others, sometimes you have to do without for the sake of the whole. Games like that are just shock value, and what happens when that isnt enough? Bukkake video games? Child Porn? I wish kids would just go outside! They are all turning into fat little zombies

1330.1.2006 18:50

Video games are just an option to having fun and is our responsability as fathers to take care of what our kids are hearing and watching,i strongly support the freedom to make this kind of games and or movies and not banned it.

1430.1.2006 20:02

Mr. Toast: Your right to speak against what you think is inapproriate is the same right that associates of the entertainment industry have to publish their product. Whether right or wrong, we (and our parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents...etc) gave them that right a long time ago. Your attempt to blame the negligence of responsible parents on women's liberation is absurd. When you accept the resposibility of caring for another human being until they can care for themselves, there are no excuses for the issue at hand.

1530.1.2006 21:32

I am insulted that you think adults believe video games are like pacman. My kids play games that I know are what I want them playing."Adults" with young children most likely grew up in the nintendo era, so a lot of us still play. Why do we have to give our right to parent up so some busybody know-it-all can tell us what are kids can do. I don't like children being regulated rather than being parented. Just because you would not make a good parent who is responsible enough to take time and pay attention to a child does not mean I'm f**king up. Personal responsibility is where it is at not a bunch of stiffs laying down marching orders. Grow up.

1631.1.2006 4:05

lets all get to the point whats wrong is the code that was sopose to be as far as we were all told a hack or modwas really left by some one who worked on the prodject. nuff said the one who was sopse to check all the coding should have caught it and i'd bet the code could only have been axcessed throught some fantstic bit of luck unless the one who left it there in the first place told someone and let out the secreton what to do to axcess it... thats the one they should crusafy not the company who asked for a product and recieved the extra crap with out their premission... now that being said its like the fbi coming into you place of work grabing all the computers and checking to see what you might of looked up is it right no why should they do it they shouldn't but what will happen soon is every search across the net from some one or another google wantta be will give up the logs so when we ask for a fair rating isnt it the raters job (aka the government) to acually check the code befor they let it be put on the shelves of our family store? the rating only means who can buy it and its also the parents values to what they feel their child is ready for to be exsposed to he watch dytime soaps latly they all should be canceled they even have cusions sleeping together and murder runs rampid so its the ratings people who let us down not the company....

1731.1.2006 7:57

@MrToast, why single out rap? Why not look at rock and pop stars as well as television shows and movies that children have access to. No they shouldn't have access but children are smart and will always find a way to see or hear things they shouldn't. It's pretty much generational. As a parent of a precocious five year old I am aware that the most bening sights and sounds will stimulate him such as song lyrics or even some of the cartoons he watches. It is my responbility as a parent to talk with my child about what is and is not acceptable social behavior. There are many negative influences out there facing children that were not there just a generation ago not just Rap music.

1831.1.2006 8:40

normally don't comment on news stories.. but had to on this one. i agree that parents should be more cautious of what their kids are playing, doing and whatever else. video games are just a sorry A@@ excuse for not being there. i understand in this world ppl need to earn a living and what not.. but make some time for your kids.. once they grow up.. there is no way of going back. its just like the after school programs... waste of time.. again, i know parents are busy and what not... but if you dont TRY and spend time with your kids.. TRY and be there for them.. what are you even there for? i know food and shelter and clothing are necessary... but they also need parents to show them whats right and whats wrong.. you should go to the store with the kids when they buy their video games. actually check out what they are buying. i actually saw a parent at a store with his son, the kid wanted i think "true crime:streets of LA". the sales person told the parent that it included violence and what not.. the dad grabs the kid and walked away! now.. that doesnt mean that every store employee has to do that. but that just goes to show you that most parents dont pay attention.. even when they are standing right there.. i dont even want to imagine what they miss when they're not there.. my bottom line on this: (before i rant more about it) know what your kids are up to. pay attention to them every now and then. and get them out of the house and away from video games. fresh air is always good.

1931.1.2006 13:50

So why does Los Angeles have to sue a video game company I don't understand.Rockstar doesn't sell it's video game to kids, retailers do.The world is forcing me to play mario and banning games that I really like.This game is awesome.What they need to do ban is the movie broke back mountain i think that this movie is worse than this video game.What if a kid seen this movie about two homos and some mountain in wyoming.That could cause some problems in itself.

2031.1.2006 19:22

It surpises me that no one has metioned that the ratings for these games, the ratings decided on by a panel of anal parents, are right on the box. Right on the front. Where it says in Black and White what audience the game is for and why the game got the rating it did. Kids (under 18) can't buy games by themselves. If you can't take the time to glance at the box or at least listen to what is going on then your kid(s) should end up exactly how you don't want them to. As a person that works in retail (including the selling of all types of videogames and accessaries) I can tell you that everytime someone tries to buy a mature or teen rated game a message box pops up asking the cashier to check the persons birth date. If they arn't of age it won't let you sell it to them. Anyone that does sell mature and teen games to the "underaged" without their parents or gardians knowing should be (and are) punished. The real issue here is the rating system. The game is for mature audiences but after unlocking the mini games it becomes an Adult game. My question is, if this game would have be labled "Adult" would that have changed the situation? Would it change the situation now? Since most retailers don't carry adult games I think that it would make a big difference. I'm not now and will never be for banning entertainment option. Its every adults right to enjoy what ever they want to enjoy, as long as the effects are! Ced

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Jan 2006 @ 19:28

2131.1.2006 23:01

this is a really complex debate. i personally play games for games and not for porn. i think wat rockstar did was in bad taste. i'm from UK and here porn is rated 18 and gta:sa is rated 18, so i don't understand how they misled ppl. 18 means for 18 years old not for 7 year olds. i never these sort of games in front of my brothers, for them i bought them shadow the hegdehog, simpsons hit & run, nfs:mw etc. the ratings are there for a reason and we shud follow their guidelines. IMHO, loads of ppl are against Rap becuase ethnic minorities dominate the rap scene. and since the rise of the right-wing, the solution has become blame everyone who is not rich and who is an "out-sider". as i said, these are complex issues and there is no single-shot solution. we need get the whole society involved and sooner or later we will develop a consensus against immorality.

226.9.2009 20:52

Really Delgadillo? Just to make sure we're all one the same page, here's a question I'd like to ask

If someone steals my gun via cracking my safe box and kills a person, does that mean I'm guilty(for buying this safe) or the company/companies who designed/sold/marketed the safe or all of us combined?


236.9.2009 21:04

Another good point. I seem to recall a game back in 04 called Max Payne 2, now you could install a mod and MONA, a character from the game would appear nude in all cut scenes etc. And let me tell you she was well done! Now I simply don't remember the publisher being sued over this, the game received a M rating from ESRB and it didn't make head line news. What does this tell us? This game was from Rockstar as well. Why did no one care to raise their voice over this?


246.9.2009 21:24

<EDITED version from above>
Really Delgadillo? Just to make sure we're all on the same page, here's a question I'd like to ask

If someone steals my gun via cracking my safe box and gives the gun to another person who kills someone with my gun, does that mean I'm guilty(for buying this safe) or the company/companies who designed/sold/marketed the safe or all of us are guilty, excluding the thief/killer? Because that is what your case sounds like. This means that if our computers contain classified MI5 info(obviously I'd have to be an agent of MI5 for this) and it gets hacked despite securing the data, I'm guilty for having the data in the first place. You wont go after the hacker or the person who got the hacker to steal the data? WOW!

There's still one thing I find hard to believe that is how did TAKE-TWO lose the case? What was the judge doing pumping blood into his penis? (

If cases like these could be won then where does the general public stand? We could be sued if our gun gets stolen for buying a safe that was falsely marketed as being 100% secure or because our computer was hacked or maybe because we just exist.


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