A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Driver: Renegade is one of the rare Nintendo 3DS games that is M-rated because of its violence, blood, sexual themes, and strong language. It isn't for kids or young teens. The mature themes involve killing kingpins and their henchmen in and around New York City, primarily through driving-based missions, which show loads of violence and blood-splatter. Cussing is heard throughout the dialogue and some scenes are sexually suggestive.
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What's it about?
In DRIVER: RENEGADE for the Nintendo 3DS, players step into the shoes of John Tanner, an ex-undercover cop who decides to take the law in his own hands. New York City is overrun by organized crime and so Tanner, with his vehicle as his main weapon, vows to take down five kingpins, including an arms dealer, human organs trafficker, drug lord, and other seedy villains. Taking place between the stories of Ubisoft's Driver and Driver 2, the relentless renegade will also work with other characters we'll meet, each of whom helps Tanner in his dangerous missions.
Is it any good?
Driver: Renegade is good, but the action is over way too soon. While the gameplay is fun and intense for the targeted audience of older gamers -- featuring mission-based driving that has you racing around NYC's streets, engaging in car chases, destroying property, performing jumps, and filling up your "Rage" bar to add a boost and punish enemy cars even more –- the main story mode is over in less than 3 hours. And while there's also a career mode, where you can complete challenges for gold medals and new vehicles, the game offers very little replayability.
Visually, the stereoscopic 3D effect works well -- without requiring 3D glasses -- for both the gameplay and the cinematic cut-scene sequences, plus the Nintendo 3DS' accelerometer sensor can be used to help control Tanner's vehicle, too. The frame rate is fairly smooth, as well, which is very important for a racing game. But because of the game's brevity, it's hard to recommend it -- especially as it's a $40 cartridge.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about whether adult games for the Nintendo 3DS platform make sense given their primary demographic of young players. Is it smart to release games like this, and other mature titles like Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D, to broaden their gamer base, or do they sell well enough to justify the investment?
What is the impact of violence like the kind found in this game?
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