Plague Inc.

App review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
Plague Inc. App Poster Image
Slow & steady kills the (human) race in disease-design app.
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 21 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn how the global economy allows disease to spread through the use of airliners, cargo ships, animals, and other modern conveniences in Plague Inc. They can also learn how mutation and adaptation make disease resistant to medical breakthroughs, as well as how disease spreads among populations. Teens will pick up some biology and social studies concepts as they work toward the very negative goal of Plague Inc.

Ease of Play

Plague Inc. can be tricky to master, but the game offers a variety of difficulty levels and a good explanation of how to play. 

Violence

Plague Inc. isn't a bloody game and doesn't focus on gore, but the object of the game is to eliminate the world's population with a mutating super-virus. 

Sex
Language
Consumerism

In the iOS version of the app, players can unlock genes, cheats, and other extras via in-app purchase. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Plague Inc. is a simulation game in which players attempt to decimate the earth's population by creating a constantly evolving super-virus that is transmitted around the globe, first causing people to get sick, then killing them. The game takes a top-down view of this, with no blood or gore (aside from a skull icon next to the death totals). The theme, though, is likely to be too intense for younger players. 

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byisaacb April 22, 2015

great game

for 10 up good for learning a bit viloent
Adult Written byMChoosathit27 October 25, 2014
Teen, 14 years old Written byDrayoc June 15, 2012

Not for little kids, but a great strategy game!

It is a odd, and unsettling feeling watching the human race fall slowly into extinction. But, Plauge inc. is an amazingly well done strategy game, based off the... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byjmtlala July 21, 2012

My Idea

This app to me is actually fine for kids 10 and up.

What's it about?

Players try to create a disease that evolves and strengthens quietly, spreading from country to country infecting, then killing, all humans. That evolution takes place by slowly strengthening the virus, fungus, or bio-weapon, adding symptoms and giving it defenses against cold, water, and the like. Players get points to upgrade their virus by "popping" bubbles that appear on screen as the virus spreads. Once doctors become aware of the problem, they'll work on a vaccine; then it becomes a race to kill the human race before there's a cure.

Is it any good?

Like Pandemic 2.5, Plague Inc. is based loosely on a popular web-based Flash game. Unlike that game, though, this version better explains the concept and lets people play at a skill level of their choosing. The game is still fairly passive, but the inclusion of DNA points to adapt the disease (and popable bubbles giving DNA point bonuses) keeps people's attention focused on the screen. 

You won't get an adrenaline rush playing this game, but you will find yourself eager to try again once it ends. And you'll likely find yourself cursing those borderland officials in Madagascar at some point if you play for any length of time.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Help teens find information on historical events in which disease played a significant role, such as the plague.

  • Ask teens to think about the scenarios in Plague Inc. Could something like that happen in real life? If so, how could it be prevented?

App details

For kids who love simulation apps

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