Power Rangers: Legacy Wars

App review by
Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media
Power Rangers: Legacy Wars App Poster Image
Brawling focus keeps movie tie-in app from being a knockout.

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A lot or a little?

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

Ease of Play

Kids get detailed steps on playing game when they first open app; help section is a bit buried -- located in app's settings option -- but contains answers to many game questions.

Violence

Strong focus on fighting. Kids won't see much blood, but users kick, throw things, shoot arrows, hit, otherwise constantly attack players they're sparring against.

Sex
Language
Consumerism

Users prompted to make in-app purchases, such as a $9.99 Green Ranger Ultimate Starter Pack, which can make playing game easier; a scene features a brand name in a sign.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Power Rangers: Legacy Wars is a fighting game based on the popular TV series and 2017 movie. There's a strong focus on fighting, which may make some parents uncomfortable. Although the combat isn't necessarily gory, it's constant and sometimes involves weapons. Kids don't have to buy anything to use the app, but parents should be aware they'll see fairly frequent prompts to make in-app purchases to make advancing in the game easier as they play. This is a fairly safe experience and, per its privacy policy, is designed for users who are older than 13. Unless kids click over to its Facebook page and connect with other players, they're unlikely to meet anyone through the app -- the teammates they fight with are fictional characters.

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What's it about?

Released in tandem with the 2017 Power Rangers movie, a reboot of the popular superhero TV series, the POWER RANGERS: LEGACY WARS app pits Power Ranger teams you assemble against other players' teams in real-time battles. Kids choose fight moves that become available as characters' energy replenishes; they earn medals when they win a match and lose points when they don't. Other currency -- zeo shards, coins, and power crystals -- can buy morph boxes, which unlock new Power Rangers for your team and/or help upgrade characters' abilities.

Is it any good?

This movie tie-in exposes fans of the long-running show to lots of their favorite characters, but its singular focus on fighting holds the app back. Some parents may not be thrilled with the emphasis placed on kids brawling (and winning) or the amount of in-app purchases they can make, which include a $9.99 starter pack and power crystal packages that range from $0.99 to $99.99. (The various types of currency, and their use, can be a little confusing; kids may need to check out the support section to fully understand what types can be spent on different things.) Also, while the app's battles are graphically impressive (for example, characters leap into the air, the defeated party falls to the ground in slow motion), they're still violent.

The game has some positive points. Users get tips throughout the experience, and kids don't technically have to buy anything to advance levels. By playing well, they can earn currency needed to move through levels. From there, players will learn what they'll need to do to participate in alliances with other members and upgrade their Power Ranger teams' abilities. Along the way, they're encouraged to work toward achieving goals to advance, which is another positive aspect of the game. But that process will take some time; buying extra currency to speed it up may be tempting, which could frustrate kids. Generally, the game would benefit from clearer, easier-to-find instructions; users get a quick rundown when they first start to play, but if they have questions, the support section doesn't always, for example, fully explain how to get zeo shards, an important part of advancing levels. It'd be nice, too, if the game featured other activities that weren't violent; if parents don't mind a little virtual sparring, they may be OK with their children playing the game. But if they do, there really isn't much else for kids to do in the app.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about violence in video games. Why does fighting seem OK in a game like Power Rangers: Legacy Wars but isn't in real life? What's a better way to resolve a disagreement?

  • Talk about commercialism. Do you feel like the app can be a fun experience without buying anything? Can you tell that the app is subtly (and not so subtly) promoting products?

  • Discuss how working together can help you achieve goals -- and the important role respect plays in teamwork. Can you identify a task that would be easier to complete with two or more people?

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
  • Pricing structure: Free
  • Release date: March 28, 2017
  • Category: Action Games
  • Topics: Superheroes
  • Size: 162.00 MB
  • Publisher: nWay Inc.
  • Version: 1.1.1
  • Minimum software requirements: iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, iOS 7.0 or later; Android version 4.0 and up

Themes & Topics

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For kids who love fighting

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