The state of Washington has become the first in the nation to regulate the sale of video games. Gov. Gary Locke on Monday signed into law a bill banning the sale of certain 'violent' games to anyone under 17.
Specifically, the law forbids selling minors any video or computer game depicting violence against law enforcement officials. Among the titles affected are industry best sellers "Grand Theft Auto 3" and "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City", both published by Take Two Interactive. Presumably, Atari's $30 million "Enter the Matrix", which hit store shelves last Thursday, would also be off limits to its core audience. That title earned only a "Teen" rating, since it is not graphically violent, though police officers are in-game enemies.
Retail employees who sell these games to minors are subject to fines of up to $500.