Roughly two months after Microsoft announced its intent to keep PEGI 18 ("Mature" by ESRB standards) off the Windows Store, the company is officially removing the ban.
Microsoft's decision came to light back in early October, just prior to the launch of Windows 8. Initially, the company stated that the Windows Store would not accept submissions for games rated PEGI 18 or carry any, though the restriction appeared to be mostly a regional thing (policy regarding ESRB wasn't explicity mentioned). Either way, Microsoft didn't take very long to reconsider this ban, and now, they're lifting it completely.
This basically means that the Windows Store will begin selling PEGI 18 or Mature rated titles, like Dishonored, Assassin's Creed III, and so forth. In a recent blog post, Windows Store exec Ted Dworkin commented:
"In welcoming PEGI 18 games into the Store, we again reinforce two principles—flexibility and confidence—fundamental to the Windows Store. We recognize that people have come to expect and appreciate rich gaming experiences on Windows and this includes games rated PEGI 18. We also want to ensure that every customer using the Store can browse and acquire apps with confidence."
Dworkin notes that the Windows Store does allow "parents to be in control" of what apps their kids can install. As such, he notes, the Store remains a "safe and positive place for children to explore."
He announces several titles on their way to the Windows Store, including The Witcher and Grand Theft Auto IV.