Game review by
Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media
Bloodborne Game Poster Image
Popular with kidsParents recommend
Wildly difficult and very bloody RPG rewards perseverance.

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 6 reviews

Kids say

age 14+
Based on 17 reviews

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Suggests the greater the challenge, the more satisfying the reward. But also tries to entertain by vicious, bloody melee combat.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The hero -- a customizable character of any race, either gender -- hunts monsters, supposedly to save remaining inhabitants of a gothic city, and shows neither interest nor aptitude for much except slaying of evil creatures.

Ease of Play

Extremely challenging, with no option to alter difficulty; only way to advance is through practice, perseverance. Calling upon, enlisting aid of other players in difficult sections can make things a bit easier. 


Players use swords, axes, spears, mallets, firearms to kill beast-like creatures. Each swing releases a torrent of blood, groans of pain. Player's character frequently killed by various weapons, claws, teeth -- even a giant, monstrous fist.


Dialogue, sounds imply that a house the hero sees only from the outside may be a brothel.


Occasional mild profanity, including the word "damn."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Bloodborne is a wildly difficult and extremely violent role-playing game. Players control a hunter of monsters who uses a variety of bladed weapons and guns to brutally kill vicious creatures, some of which are humanoid in appearance. Dark red blood sprays with every hit, and players will hear moans and screams of pain -- including some from their own character, who dies frequently. This is an exceptionally challenging game but one that rewards patience and perseverance with a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. Online features are included, but communication is limited to selecting prewritten text messages.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byJIza112233 July 30, 2018

graphic violence

very depressing and macabre atmosphere lacking positive message
only one character that consistently is a good role model
extreme difficulty
graphic and disturb... Continue reading
Adult Written byJustYourAverage... November 23, 2020

A PEGI 16, obviously too strict but very bloody

First of all, most PEGI 18s are suitable for 12 year olds, so a PEGI 16 is obviously not for 18+. Bloodborne is a grim, but incredible game with loads of blood... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written bysomething_nice June 16, 2015

Bloodborne lives up to its name!

As a long time "Souls" fan (I've beaten Demon's Souls, Dark Souls, and Dark Souls 2 several times), I was very excited to play the newest ga... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byScathingreviews February 19, 2021


Bloodborne is weird. Very, very weird. The start of the game is not too much so, you kill werewolves and whatnot, but it goes off the rails by a lot, with great... Continue reading

What's it about?

In BLOODBORNE, your hero wakes up after a mysterious blood transfusion to a world roaming with terrifying creatures, many of which appear to once have been human. Charged with hunting these beasts, he (or she) roams the streets with a gun and a bladed weapon, killing monsters before they can kill him (or her). There's not much of a story beyond this simple premise, which leaves players to focus on exploring the labyrinthine world and mastering combat. This game was made to tax players' gaming skills. Enemies -- even the weakest ones -- are exceptionally challenging and often can only be defeated through a combination of timing, reflexes, and tactical environment traversal. Players are intended to die frequently -- the very first battle is designed to be unwinnable -- forcing a mindset of caution and strategy going forward. You spend most of the game alone in your battle against the monsters but can request help in especially difficult battles by ringing an in-game bell and waiting for other players to answer your call.

Is it any good?

Bloodborne poses a daunting challenge. In addition to most enemies being terrifyingly tough, you lose all the Blood Echoes (currency/experience) you've collected since your last save point each time your hero dies, effectively negating any character-building progress you've made. There will be times when, after cautiously adventuring for an hour or more, your hero will be killed in a matter of seconds and all your work will seem for naught. But there's a point to the difficulty. The game's designers want players to have a stake in what's happening, to feel the stress of the situation. It makes for an incredibly tense experience, one that is undeniably frustrating at times but which also delivers an immense satisfaction and feeling of accomplishment when you succeed.

Plus, it's rarely unfair. Combat is finely tuned and feels absolutely terrific. The acts of strategically attacking and dodging are gratifying in and of themselves. When you fail, it won't be because the interface failed you but, rather, likely because you failed to properly read and react to the situation. Exploring the game's massive, maze-like, beautifully detailed world, which is filled with treasures, shortcuts, and hidden areas, is just gravy. It takes a while to get a proper feel for it, but older players who give Bloodborne a chance may be surprised to find they don't ever want to stop playing.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the impact of violence in media. Do you ever feel worked up after watching a violent show or playing a violent game? Can you play these games without them affecting you?

  • Discuss how you deal with challenges. How do you usually confront a difficult task? By buckling down and working through it? By putting it off and coming back later? How do you feel once you've successfully finished it? 

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love challenges

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

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.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate