A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Ease of Play
The game drops players in without any instructions -- though it does link to a web-based guide that takes you out of the game. Tutorials are provided as you progress, however, and figuring out movement doesn't take long even without help.
Violence & Scariness
There are pervasive horror themes throughout the game and plenty of violence. Players use tools such as a crossbow and sword to combat demons as they explore, with blood spattering from the demons when hit. When defeated, they dissolve into a body-shaped black puddle.
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Products & Purchases
Players can buy in-game gold via in-app purchase to upgrade their weapons. (This is not required, though, as players find gold as they explore the mansion.)
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Dark Meadow is an action-horror game that uses one of the best graphics engines available on iOS devices, making it very realistic and potentially frightening. The game is also full of violent battles with various demons who spit poison and slash at the player with their talons. Players fight back with a crossbow, sword, and other weapons in what can be bloody fights. The app lets players take a shortcut to acquiring better weapons by offering in-app purchases of the game's gold, but this is not required. Users can share high scores via the Game Center social network, but participation is optional.
Is It Any Good?
While there's no question that DARK MEADOW is much too violent and scary for young players, those looking for a good scare and decent action could do a lot worse. Using the same graphics engine as the hit Infinity Blade, the game looks fantastic and features detailed, creepy monsters. What makes the game really stand out, though, is its story. More so than most games in the App Store, this game is as much about plot as it is action, with well-written and well-acted voice segments from your largely unseen in-game ally. Better still, the game doesn't repeat itself in that script.
The game's not without faults, though. When you die, you're sent back to the beginning (with your stats and items intact), but if you've progressed through several areas, that's more than a bit frustrating. And the battles are generally the same, and get old after a bit. The concerns are minor, though. Fans of action and horror games both are bound to find plenty to like here.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.