A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Daemon X Machina is a third-person shooter for the Nintendo Switch. The game's set in the future, when giant robotic-like characters (controlled by humans inside) fight against others. The focus of the game is fantasy violence, where players use rockets, rifles, and other weapons to defeat other robotic opponents. While there's some blood (in a cut-scene sequence), there isn't any blood or gore shown during the rest of the game. It also features mild profanity (the word "ass" can be heard in the dialog). Daemon X Machina also supports optional in-game purchases, known as downloadable content (or DLC).
What's it about?
The Earth is under attack and you -- and your squad of fighters -- must push back against this global threat in DAEMON X MACHINA. This high-intensity third-person action game challenges you to climb into the cockpit of a huge Arsenal, a mechanized robot (or "mech"), and use several weapons and upgradeable parts to take down enemy factions. You'll be tasked with roaming expansive environments, collecting and using Femto Energy (to boost your stats and create powerful mirages) and experiment with many weapon slots, types, and body modification add-ons to create the ultimate fighting machine. You can even wield environment objects, like cars and street signs, to use as melee weapons. You'll also be forced to eject from your Arsenal to fight on foot using special weapons and abilities. Along with the single-player story campaign, a cooperative (co-op) online mode supports up to four players to fight against tough boss enemies as a unified squad.
Is it any good?
While this shooter has some fun gameplay and great graphics, the action does grow a little tiresome after a short while. The first thing you'll notice about Daemon X Machina are the attractive visuals in this sci-fi action thriller. Especially since the Nintendo Switch is somewhat limited in power and performance compared to the other consoles, it really does look (and feel good) in your hand. It's a great-looking game, with attractive special effects showcasing the futuristic fighting among the war machines, but unfortunately, some of this is weakened when the system is docked on a big-screen TV.
Most of the battles involve aerial maneuvers, which are exciting, and surprisingly simple to control despite having three dimensions to play around with during combat. There's also some depth, especially when it comes to all the customization and loadout elements. For instance, dressing up your Arsenal with increasingly powerful weapons, and other upgrades is gratifying the first time you do it. Unfortunately, the "rinse and repeat" or "deja vu" experience is definitely there after about two hours of play, or so. That's unfortunate because it's a 15-hour game with similar missions, like "Destroy this," "Stop that," and so on. Better variety in gameplay and/or new story elements or plot twists would help matters here. That, and the enemy A.I. (artificial intelligence) isn't too challenging. The bosses are tougher to take down, but you don't need to rethink tactics or anything. Overall, Daemon X Machina is a fun game, but don't expect the thrill to last too long. It's accessible, easy on the eyes, and intense, but it's too bad the developers didn't add more variety to keep things fresh over the course of the campaign.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about violence in video games. Is the impact of the violence in Daemon X Machina affected by the fact that you're essentially fighting robots against each other? Would the impact of the violence be intensified if the battles were more realistic, bloody, or gory?
Is it better to go into a complicated situation alone, or with friends? What are the pros and cons of doing something by yourself?
- Platforms: Nintendo Switch
- Price: $59.99
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online? Available online
- Developer: Nintendo
- Release date: September 13, 2019
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, Misfits and Underdogs, Robots, Space and Aliens
- ESRB rating: T for Fantasy Violence, Mild Blood, Mild Language
- Last updated: February 21, 2020
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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.