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Nintendo Slaps Parental Controls on Revolution

Nintendo Co. has become the latest console maker to promise parents the means to help restrict their children's access to violent video games.

The new version of Nintendo's videogame console, called Revolution and due out in 2006, will allow users to require passwords for video games that carry certain ratings, such as "T" for "teen" or "M" for "mature."

Many people associate Nintendo's game consoles with younger users, and few games designed for its systems have a lot of violence or sexuality.

Although the company didn't receive many customer requests for parental controls, "it is something that I just think is right to do," said Perrin Kaplan, vice president for marketing at Nintendo's U.S. headquarters in Redmond, Wash.

The move echoes Redmond-based Microsoft Corp.'s efforts to bolster parental controls with its Xbox 360, due out next Tuesday.

The new Microsoft console lets users restrict access to video games and DVDs that carry certain ratings. It also gives parents ways to control who their children interact with on the company's Xbox Live online gaming service.

Sony Corp.'s PlayStation 2 has parental controls for movies but not games. The company has not yet detailed plans for its forthcoming PlayStation 3.