Codex Gamicus
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The Australian Classification Board (ACB), formerly known as the Office of Film and Literature Classification for Australia (OFLCA), is a statutory censorship and classification body which provides day to day administrative support for the Classification Board which classified films, video games and publications in Australia, and the Classification Review Board which reviews films, computer games and publications when a valid application has been made. Originally founded as the OFLC, it was dissolved in 2006. The Attorney-General's Department now provides administrative support to the ACB.


In February 2006, Attorney-General Philip Ruddock announced that the policy and administrative functions of the OFLC would become part of the Attorney-General’s Department, and, while the Classification Board and Classification Review Board would continue to make classification decisions, they would be serviced by a secretariat from the Attorney-General’s Department.


Fiona Jolly is the current Director and was appointed on the 6th December 2021 and will be replaced on the 5th December 2024.

The current members of the Classification Board:

  • Ellenor Nixon (deputy director)
  • Wendy Banfield (senior classifier)
  • Marie-Louise Carroll (senior classifier)
  • Thomas Mann
  • Jenny Burke
  • Damien Carr
  • Jenny Fowler
  • Felix Hubble
  • Iian Humphrey
  • Jennifer Marvello
  • Lora Pechovska
  • Paul Tenision

The current members of the Classification Review Board:

  • Susan Knowles (Covenor)
  • Susan Bush (Deputy Covenor)
  • Rechelle Leahy
  • Margaret Clancy
  • Adam Davy
  • Christopher Allen
  • David Toll

Classification of Video Games[]

Despite a line in the National Classification Code stating that "adults should be able to read, hear and see what they want", the adult R18+ classification was only introduced on January 1, 2013 for video games.

The ACB takes a strict stance with video games, and video game classification in Australia is the most strict in the Western World in terms of not having an adult's rating (R18+) with some Attorneys-General having conservative views on the matter. Though Australia has no R rating, there are many examples of games getting much more lenient ratings than other countries. Such games would include Halo 3 which was classified as M (BBFC 15, ESRB M, OFLC R16), The Witcher, which was classified as MA15+ (PEGI 18, BBFC 18, ESRB-M), Dead Rising, which was classified as MA15+ (BBFC 18, PEGI 18, CERO Z), and Dead or Alive: Xtreme 2, which was classified as PG (ESRB M).

Ratings given[]


The classifications below are advisory in nature — they are not legally enforced.

ACB-E.svg ACB-E-Large.png

E (Exempt from Classification) - These films are granted permission to be sold without a specific classification. This classification is usually granted to (and not limited to) educational content such as documentaries, concerts, fitness programmes, educational software, live TV and non-violent sporting events. Currently there is no predetermined marking for exempt films and computer games [1], although it is advised that films and computer games that are exempt display “This film/computer game is exempt from classification”.

The content varies depending on the show / film. Any film or computer game which is to be rated E must not exceed the PG rating.

ACB-G.svg ACB-G-Large.svg

G (General) - These films and computer games are for general viewing. However, G does not necessarily designate a children’s film or game as many of these productions contain content that would be of no interest to children.

The content is minimal in impact.

ACB-PG.svg ACB-PG-Large.svg

PG (Parental guidance recommended) - These films and computer games contain material that may confuse or upset younger viewers.

The content is mild in impact on children.

ACB-M.svg ACB-M-Large.svg

M (Recommended for mature audiences) - These films and computer games contain material that requires a mature perspective, but is still not enough to be deemed too extreme for younger players. This classification was formerly known as M15+, but was changed to simply M to distinguish it from the higher (and restricted) rating of MA15+. This is the highest unrestricted rating.

The content is moderate in impact.


By contrast, the classification below is legally restricted—i.e., it is illegal to sell or exhibit materials so classified to a person younger than the respective age limit.

ACB-MA15+.svg ACB-MA15+-Large.svg

MA15+ (Restricted) - The content is considered unsuitable for exhibition by persons under the age of 15. Persons under 15 may only legally purchase or exhibit MA15+ rated content under the supervision of an adult guardian. This is a legally restricted category.


R18+ (Restricted) - The content is considered very unsuitable for younger audiences under the age of 18. Persons under 18 may only legally purchase or exhibit R18+ rated content under the supervision of an adult guardian. This is a legally restricted category. This Rating was only considered and allowed in 2013.

ACB-Refused Classification.pngRefused.png

Refused Classification - The content is considered unacceptable if it exceeds the R18+ rating and is outright banned. This means it is illegal to sell anywhere in Australia, and a huge fine (or short jail time) is expected if someone was to bring a refused game over the border. The games given an RC may be re-submitted edited, and if the review board is okay with it, it can be given an R18+ rating.


External Links[]