Nintendo is the most G-rated publisher by a long shot
Confirming what everyone already expected.
What are the games you cherish most from your childhood? Mario Kart 64? Super Smash Bros? The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds? And what console did you spend the most time with? Was it the Nintendo 64? Or maybe the SNES or NES if you're a touch older?
If you answered yes to any of the above, you are one of the many. Nintendo is essentially the gatekeeper of all your cherished childhood memories.
Sure there's space for the PS1, Sega Dreamcast and Atari 2600 there too. But Nintendo's iconic collection of timeless games and consoles make them the biggest wheeler and dealer when it comes to nostalgia.
It's why pre-orders for the NES and SNES Mini consoles crashed websites, it's why the Nintendo Switch managed to shift 4.7 million units by July 2017, despite its small launch lineup and under-specced hardware. You know this. We know this. Nintendo knows this.
However, we've been analysing the Australian Classification Board's (ACB) huge database of video game classifications recently and can confirm that Nintendo is the most G-rated mainstream publisher, by a large margin.
The data below shows how many G (general audience) rated games each major publisher released between 1994 and 2016. The graph is pretty telling of what we all already knew deep down. The Australian Classification Board has handed out 773 G ratings to Nintendo since 1994. That's 66% of Nintendo's total 1166 titles submitted to the ACB for classification.
There's also 354 G-rated EA games in the same amount of time, 296 for Ubisoft since 1997, 266 for Sony since 1994, 262 for Microsoft since '95 and only 145 for Bandai since 1998.
The data there also reveals some other interesting stats. Despite being the smallest mainstream publisher of G-rated games, Bandai picked up 60 G ratings in 2015 alone. That's largely thanks to Bandai's foray into the App Store and Google Play. Glancing over the list of Bandai's G-rated titles for 2015, you find a lot of obscure titles, like Bird Zapper!, Corn Quest and Doodle Fit 2. Even Froggy Jump 2 and Froggy Splash 2, which are two different titles from the same developer.
Microsoft published 72 G-rated games in 2016, despite having the smallest exclusive lineup of every console. That's because the ACB rates everything. From the blockbuster hits like Gears of War 4 to shovel-ware like Nokia Climate Mission 3D.
It's worth noting that these infographics are based on data pulled from Australian Classification Board's (ACB) database in April 2017 and that ACB's database is, put lightly, a bit of a mess.
So while it's not surprising news, Nintendo's consoles are officially the go-to console if you want to bond with your babbies over a few laps of Mario Kart 8: Deluxe or show 'em who's boss over a brawl in ARMS. If you're trawling the app store for something to chuck on the iPad, it seems just about anything from EA Games would be a safe bet too (though it's always a good idea to double check the classification).
We'll be releasing more findings from our research on the Australian Classification Board's data over the next week, so stay tuned for more tasty tidbits.
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