A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Overall theme of good versus evil, as well as protecting your loved ones. Players fighting to save people of their land from oppression, trying to clear their names from a conspiracy against them. Also a number of unique moral choices available, which can change how characters react to player, how events will play out.
Positive Role Models
Both Corvo, Emily live by a distinct code of honor, driven by desire to protect those in need, overcome evil. Many of their allies share this belief, work to make their land a better place. Players given opportunity to accomplish their goals however they want, running entire moral spectrum, dealing with consequences of those choices.
Ease of Play
A learning curve for using both characters' moves effectively. Possible, through player choices, to play through entire game without access to either character's special abilities, making game (optionally) even more difficult.
Violence & Scariness
Players can choose stealth, using strictly nonlethal attack options or barreling ahead as a full-blown killing machine, complete with gruesome executions. Either way, still plenty of violence, gore, including blood-fly infested corpses littering streets, characters being tortured for information. Player chooses whether or not to contribute to violence, "chaos" level.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A few lines in dialogue occasionally reference sexual activity; some characters shown in revealing, suggestive clothing.
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Frequent use of strong language, including "f--k", "s--t", "ass", more.
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Products & Purchases
Sequel to original Dishonored game; story carries on from events in that game's DLC. Dishonored 2 is also spinning off into other media, merchandise, including novels, comic books, collectibles.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Some characters, particularly NPCs, occasionally shown to be smoking, drinking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Dishonored 2 is a first-person action/adventure game. The game features a variable morality, allowing player to overcome enemies using lethal and/or nonlethal options, as well as with or without supernatural abilities. Regardless of which path the player chooses, Dishonored 2 is still a violent game, with characters being executed and tortured throughout, as well as blood and insect-infected corpses littering the streets. Parents should also be aware that, in addition to the sometimes extreme violence, the game also makes use of profanity in some of its dialogue. Some characters are shown smoking and drinking, while other characters reference sexual activity and wear revealing clothing. There's also frequent use of strong profanity, including "f--k," "s--t," "ass," and more.
Is It Any Good?
This action-adventure game does an amazing job of encouraging players to find their own way to play, which makes it very special. Right from the start, the game not only challenges players to make the hard choices but to live with the consequences of those choices. After the game's opening sequence sets events in motion, players must choose whether to continue as either Corvo or Emily, each having their own unique set of skills. This choice is permanent for the playthrough, so if you want to see both characters' perspectives, you'll have to play from start to finish more than once. And whether you play stealthy and nonlethal, aggressive and deadly, or with or without powers, the game never lets you forget that there are consequences to your choices. It's a struggle to get the best results, but it's also a challenge to players to find creative solutions rather than just charging in, guns and blades blazing.
Speaking of creative solutions, there's plenty in Dishonored 2's toolbox for players to get creative with. Both Emily and Corvo might have powers from the same source, but they're different enough that neither feels like a copy of the other. Corvo's Bend Time skill sees the former bodyguard slip in and out of well-guarded areas in the blink of an eye, while Emily's Domino ability can turn a guard into a sort of human voodoo doll, spreading whatever damage he takes to others. As diverse as the two heroes are, it's almost a shame that you'll completely miss out on experiencing one of them until you finish your first playthrough. Still, even though the game can take anywhere from 15 to 20 hours to complete, there are so many ways to play that each time feels different from the last. And while Dishonored 2's plot can be a bit predictable, that never stops it from being engrossing. Even though you have an idea where the story is going, you can't help but be eager to see how it gets there. It's not just Corvo and Emily's struggle that catches your interest either but also the supporting cast with their own stories to tell. Even the random NPCs in the background have conversations that feel real and expand on their daily lives in this fantasy realm. You get invested not only in the heroes but in the world as a whole.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.