ESRB Description Sheds Light on Mature Rating for Batman: Arkham Knight

on March 9, 2015 1:34 PM

In the last few weeks, many fans of the well-received Batman: Arkham series were thrown for a loop by the ESRB’s certification of a “Mature” (“M”) rating for Rocksteady’s final chapter of the Batman series, following the previous titles all receiving a “Teen” rating – however, new details from the ESRB website reveals the reasons behind its rating.

An update on the ESRB website’s listing for Batman: Arkham Knight includes a rating summary behind the game’s “Mature” rating, alongside its content descriptors of “Blood, Language, Suggestive Themes, Violence.” The full Rating Summary from the ESRB is below, but be warned that there may be some spoilers for a few of the game’s scenarios and content:

“Rating Summary: This is an action-adventure game in which players primarily assume the role of Batman as he battles several villains spreading chaos across Gotham City. Players traverse a variety of locations around Gotham while battling thugs, examining crime scenes, and occasionally rescuing hostages. Players engage in melee-style combat using punches, kicks, and gadgets (e.g., batarangs, explosives). Enemies cry out in pain when struck, and some takedowns are highlighted by brief slow-motion effects and loud impact sounds. Some sequences allow players to use tank-like vehicles with machine gun turrets and rockets to shoot enemies; a vehicle’s wheels are also used to torture an enemy in one sequence. Cutscenes depict characters getting shot (on and off camera) while restrained or unarmed. Large bloodstains/pools of blood appear in crime scenes and in the aftermath of violent acts; one room depicts a person torturing a character on a bloody operating table. During the course of the game, players can shoot unarmed characters and a hostage. Neon signs in a red-light district read “live nude girls” and “XXX.” The words “b*tch,” “gobsh*te,” and “a*s” appear in the dialogue.”

While all of the previous Batman: Arkham games have received “Teen” ratings, each title still pushed the “T” designation pretty hard with a big emphasis on violence, heavy material, and some sexually suggestive content – but, it looks like Arkham Knight may have crossed the line a little farther this time around.

Batman: Arkham Knight will release for PS4, Xbox One, and PC on June 2nd, 2015.

 /  Features Editor
Ryan is the Features Editor at DualShockers, with over five years' experience in the world of video games culture and writing. He holds a BA in English & Cinema from Binghamton University, and lives in New York City.