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Stellar Blade gets 18+ age rating in South Korea, same as GTA 5 and The Witcher 3

Upcoming PS5-exclusive appears to be in good company
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Stellar Blade, the upcoming PS5-exclusive RPG by Shift Up, has been officially rated as being appropriate for mature audiences only by the Game Rating and Administration Committee, or GRAC for short, of South Korea, where the developer is based. This is the same rating as titles like Grand Theft Auto 5 and The Witcher 3 received from this authority, to put it into context.

GRAC rated Stellar Blade especially strong in the violence and sexuality categories, indicating “explicit depictions of sexual behavior, possibly including nudity” as well as scenes involving “aggressive conflict,” possibly showing “realistic blood, gore, weapons, and depictions of human injury and death.”

It doesn’t look like any characters will be explicitly nude in the game, though. Instead, their skin tight suits are risqué enough for the board members to give the title a corresponding rating. GRAC’s reasoning mentions “female characters appearing to be nude in their costumes.”

The main character from Stellar Blade, set to appear during the January 2024 State of Play, is looking ahead, her face illuminated by the soft glow of sunlight

Stellar Blade's character models are based on body scans of South Korean models.

In terms of violence, there seems to be a scene showing the “dismembered body of a character” with “red-colored blood” being shown throughout the game.

Stellar Blade got weaker marks in all the other available content categories checked by GRAC, namely fear / horror / threatening, language, alcohol / tobacco / drugs, crime / anti-societal or anti-governmental messages, and gambling / betting, though all of these themes appear to be present in the game in some capacity.

Again, for the sake of comparing that to a well-known title, GTA 5 was rated strongly in every one of these categories excluding fear / horror / threatening.

Stellar Blade’s sexy character design has been surprisingly controversial among gamers in the West, even though it shouldn’t have come as a surprise considering Shift Up’s history – it’s the studio behind successful mobile game Goddess of Victory: Nikke, which features loads of very attractive women in risky outfits.

Sony and Shift Up entered a deeper partnership late last year as part of the publisher and console maker’s push into the South Korean gaming industry that also saw it partner up with NCSOFT.

Stellar Blade is set for an April 26, 2024, release on PS5.