The Japanese games ratings board, Computer Entertainment Rating Organization (CERO), will reopen and resume its operations later this week on Thursday, May 7th. CERO announced a temporary closure of its offices in early April, citing coronavirus-related concerns amid the global pandemic.
CERO revealed news of its returning to rate Japanese games in a brief statement earlier today. When business resumes in a few days’ time, the organization will have new health measures in place to protect its workforce’s safety. For example, to circumvent peak commuting hours, CERO’s offices will only be opened from 10:00am to 4:00pm.
A translation of CERO’s statement regarding this latest development is featured below, courtesy of DualShockers:
“Our Organization was temporarily closed due to the government declaring a state of emergency amidst the new Coronavirus epidemic, prompting the governor of Tokyo to request citizens to stay home. Our business operations will now resume on May 7. We apologize for all the worries and issues we have caused to our employees and all related parties during our temporary closure. Our business hours will be from 10 AM to 4 PM to avoid peak hours commuting. In addition, we are preparing measures to enable work from home.”
Such a temporary closure has likely affected several game releases in Japan, since no title can launch without CERO’s seal of approval. Sword Art Online Alicization Lycoris serves as one of the major games impacted by coronavirus. Last week, Bandai Namco Entertainment postponed the JRPG’s release, which was initially set to hit stores this month. Alicization Lycoris will now come to the PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One platforms on July 10th.
Other rating agencies, such as North America’s ESRB and Europe’s PEGI, were not similarly affected. Both organizations were able to continue their operations unabated, with employees working remotely from home.
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