Extinction Squad

App review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
Extinction Squad App Poster Image
Goofy arcade game surprisingly violent; some blood.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Extinction Squad wasn't created with educational intent, and we don't recommend it for learning. 

Ease of Play

The game is an alteration of the classic "Breakout" game, letting you deflect falling objects to score points and catch power-ups. It doesn't take long for the game to throw a lot of things at you on screen at the same time, which can be overwhelming, but to do so at a slower pace would make the game boring. 

Violence

For a game whose logo implies a zany good time, Extinction Squad is incredibly violent. Falling bombs attempt to kill the player, and suicidal animals attempt to plunge to their death. Those that succeed leave a bloody splatter on the ground. 

Sex
Language

Occasional use of the English profanity "bloody," but that's about it. 

Consumerism

Players can buy in-game coins with real-world cash (in amounts ranging from $1 to $8). You can collect money in-game, but between levels the game aggressively encourages people to "buy" advances to different levels. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Extinction Squad is an action arcade game that is more violent than it might seem on the surface. Animals attempt to leap to their death, leaving a large bloody smear on the ground when they succeed. While it's a cartoon game, this is a very loose definition of cartoon violence. The game also promotes in-app purchases fairly aggressively, though they're not essential. Players can share high scores via the Game Center social network, but participation is optional.

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What's it about?

Players swipe their finger across the screen to move a pair of trampoline-carrying explorers across the screen to bounce plunging animals -- ranging from birds to gorillas to humpback whales -- to safety. They'll also catch coins, which allow them to advance to other levels (with higher point totals) and dodge falling bombs, which end the game. Each level requires players to save a higher number of animals, though they're not penalized for the ones they miss (who land with a bloody splat).

Is it any good?

EXTINCTION SQUAD is a game that's meant to be tongue in cheek (that's immediately made obvious when you see the game's hero -- a muscle-bound "Chuck" Darwin, an obvious reference to the creator of the theory of evolution). The short story, explaining why animals are trying to kill themselves, is also especially silly. But for a game that, at a quick glance, seems kid friendly, there's a lot of unexpected violence. 

Adults might get a good chuckle at the game, though -- and the Breakout-style gameplay is well done. It's an absurd title, and not suited for young kids, but it's one that will keep you playing. 

App details

For kids who love arcade games

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