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Battlefield 4

Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
Battlefield 4 Game Poster Image
Extremely violent and mature military shooter sequel.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 46 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 69 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Although elements of Battlefield 4 focus on teamwork and strategic thinking, we don't recommend it for learning because of its graphic violence.

Positive Messages

This is a first-person shooter in which you play a U.S. Marine and his Special Forces unit, determined to take on enemy forces in China and Russia. It's a positive message to defend the world from worldwide threats, but the game -- especially in the online multiplayer modes -- was designed in such a way that you don't often think about why you're killing enemies. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

You climb into the boots of  U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Daniel Recker, a member of the elite Tombstone squad. Although you don't know much about Recker -- or even see him often, for that matter, as it's a first-person game -- he is a military man who chose to defend the free world from serious threats. This is admirable, but he and his unit use a number of weapons to destroy enemies.

Ease of Play

Those comfortable with first-person shooters on consoles or a PC will immediately learn the control mechanics for this game -- the developer doesn't toy much with the popular formula. That said, there's a tutorial mode, too.


Battlefield 4 is an extremely violent first-person shooter. Players use a number of weapons, including a knife, sniper rifle, machine gun, rocket launcher, and mines, to kill enemy soldiers near and far. The battles are realistic and frenetic; large amounts of blood can be seen, and enemies often scream in pain before dying. In some cases you can sneak up on enemies from behind and kill them with a knife, while an interrogation scene sees a soldier being electrocuted as a means of torture.


The game has strong profanity, including words like "f--k," "s--t," "a--hole," "damn," "bastard," and "bitch." It's also likely you'll hear profanity during multiplayer matches from other people. 


Gamers are asked to join Battlefield 4 Premium for $50, where members receive themed digital expansion packs, two-week early access to each pack, and additional content and new updates every week.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know Battlefield 4 is a "Mature"-rated military simulation filled with extreme, realistic violence. Played from a first-person perspective, the single-player campaign and multiplayer modes are designed to make you feel you're right there in the middle of the action. You'll use machine guns, pistols, grenades, sniper rifles, and knives to kill enemy soldiers. There is blood (but not gore) and potentially disturbing scenes of torture.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 13 year old Written byFrankAGuerrero December 17, 2013

Battlefield review. my opinion for parents

I have purchased this game for my son. Growing up lots of my family members were drafted into the military. I think it is good for my son to have some knowledge... Continue reading
Adult Written bySh0ck_13lade May 15, 2014

Not What Common Sense Media is Making Out Of

I may not have a child yet (I'm only 28), but I am a game designer at Naughty Dog Inc., the creators of the Last of Us and Uncharted. Let me tell you, CSM... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byFMAgeek December 18, 2013

Fantastic Game for 12+...

Battlefield 4, is an amazing game first off. I think that this game is ok because it shows how you can really actually appreciate the soldiers fighting for you... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byisaacrocks10 November 8, 2013

really good game

dont just go away because this review is by a teen. this game is really good.i think it should be for 11 year olds. there is a fair bit of swearing in the campa... Continue reading

What's it about?

As with its popular predecessor, BATTLEFIELD 4 is a first-person shooter that drops the player into modern-day battles. The single-player campaign lets you assume the role of Marine Corps Sgt. Daniel Recker, a member of the Tombstone squad, who is tapped to diffuse a spark ignited by China and Russia that could result in a global conflict. By fighting over land, sea, and air, you'll take on enemies, issue commands, and stop this global threat before it's too late. As with previous Battlefield games, much of the attention is on the multiplayer matches played in large groups over the Internet on massive maps. This game is powered by the proprietary Frostbite 3 engine from developer DICE and has realistic graphics and smooth animation. Note: Battlefield 4 plays out the same way on all versions (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Windows PC), and there are next-generation versions, for PS4 and Xbox One.

Is it any good?

Yes, for sure. Electronic Arts/DICE has created an explosive sequel worthy of your time, money, and effort -- but take heed of the ESRB's "Mature" rating for strong and realistic violence (and strong profanity). Battlefield 4 feels great (in both close-quarter, squad-based combat and wide-open warfare), looks amazing (with huge and well-designed set pieces), and offers a ton of gameplay to sink your teeth into. This is especially true for the multiplayer modes playable with others online, including the new Obliteration mode, wherein two rival teams fight to retrieve a bomb and use it to blow up three enemy targets. Also back is the Conquest mode, which also delivers a ton of challenge, thanks to its many weapons and vehicles: helicopters, jets, ships, tanks, and jeeps. The only disappointment is the absence of the six-mission co-op mode from last year's Battlefield 3. Gamers who like this series will love this sequel, while newcomers to the franchise will ask themselves why they waited so long to jump in.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • There's a long-time battle between the Call of Duty games and the Battlefield games. Which franchise is better, overall? Best story? Graphics? Multiplayer maps and modes? It's a heated debate, so which side are you on, and why?

  • What is the impact of media violence on kids?

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