A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this game contains graphic violence and gore, and the controversial option to harvest "Little Sisters," mutated 10-year-old girls who extract a coveted fluid called "Adam" from dead people. The game presents you with a moral dilemma: Kill a girl for the most "Adam," or save her life for less. Choosing the latter yields payoffs including bonus items and support from other characters. This game is adult in nature across the board with some sexual overtones, foul language, and references to alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
2K Games' BIOSHOCK from 2K Games begins with you as a survivor of a plane crash in the North Atlantic. After swimming to shore through flaming debris, you find a lighthouse with an elevator that takes you on a one-way ride down into Rapture, a hidden underwater city that has been torn apart by civil war. Not only must you find a way out alive in this non-linear underwater world dominated by biologically mutated citizens, robotic enforcers, and little girls who steal life-giving fluid from the dead, but you have to solve the mystery of what happened here. You can biologically modify your body to create superhuman weapons, and dozens of unique plasmids and gene tonics (often found in vending machines throughout this world) must be consumed to enhance your abilities.
Is it any good?
BioShock is an exhilarating adventure that breaks new ground in interactive storytelling and digital art design. More so than any other game in recent memory, it is dripping with atmosphere and intrigue, and it's one of those rare titles where story, dialogue, and character development are just as important as the action sequences. Xbox 360 players who are 17 or older will not want to miss out on this extraordinary interactive adventure.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how the game introduces very mature themes. Could the game makers have delivered the same kind of visceral experience without pushing the mature envelope? And how about the moral decision to kill or save the "Little Sisters"? Do you become heartless when choosing to kill them or is this acceptable within a game setting, especially given its creepy sci-fi context?
Our editors recommend
Top advice and articles
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.