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Fate/Extella Link

Game review by
David Chapman, Common Sense Media
Fate/Extella Link Game Poster Image
Repetitive button-mashing combat best shared with others.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Game features some themes of teamwork and friendship, with players and their "Servants" working together to fight against common foes. Players also build relationships with these characters throughout story, strengthening bonds and learning more about them. Teamwork also carries over to multiplayer, with players teaming up in 4-on-4 battles.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The Servant characters are "Heroic Spirits," the souls of famous figures from history and legend. Their histories cover positive and negative stories. Characters like Robin Hood, Jeanne d'Arc were heroic; others (e.g., Elizabeth Bathory, Lü Bu Fèngxiān) were much more villainous and malicious.

Ease of Play

Game is a hack-and-slash action title with very simple controls. Basic attacks are easy to chain together into lengthy combos, while special attacks do massive damage and clear out swaths of enemies with a single button.

Violence

Violence is constant, with players fighting hundreds of generic enemy soldiers, using powerful melee and magical attacks to even the odds. No shortage of combat, but no blood or gore. Defeated enemies simply fall over and disappear.

Sex

Many characters, particularly female ones, wear revealing outfits, show themselves off in suggestive poses. Game also features sexually suggestive lines and provocative moments throughout.

Language

Some profanity, such as "damn" and "s--t," occasionally appears in dialogue.

Consumerism

Fate/Extella Link continues Type-Moon's popular Fate/ franchise, which has multiple tie-ins and merchandise, including several games, anime, manga, and collectibles.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Fate/Extella Link is a hack-and-slash action/adventure game available for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PS Vita, and Window-based PCs. The game is set in the popular Fate/ series, with characters based loosely on figures from both mythology and history. Players recruit teams of these "Heroic Spirits" to fight on their behalf against waves of enemies to control territories in a virtual environment. The violence is nonstop, with players hacking and slashing their way through hordes of enemies, but there isn't any blood or gore shown on-screen. The game does feature some sexually suggestive content in the dialogue and in the appearance of many female characters.

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What's it about?

FATE/EXTELLA LINK is the fourth chapter in Type-Moon's "Fate/Extra" universe, picking up immediately after the events of Fate/Extella: The Umbral Star. The battle continues for control of SE.RA.PH., a virtual world that has existed on the Moon since before the dawn of humanity. Within SE.RA.PH. lies the power to alter the very fabric of reality, based on the single wish granted to whomever survives its tests. To keep this power out of the wrong hands, players must recruit a team of "Servants," powerful warriors pulled from myth and history. Players will take their team of Servants into battle, hacking and slashing through swarms of AI constructs, as well as other Servants, as they try to maintain control of the virtual world. It's a heavy burden to shoulder the fate of the world, but you don't need to carry that weight alone. You can team with up to three friends in frantic 4-by-4 multiplayer action in both local and online play. Drive back your foes and prove to SE.RA.PH. once again that you are worthy of your one great wish.

Is it any good?

This action title is somewhat fun if you're playing with friends, but its repetitive action will only appeal to fans of the series or to players who want to see these random characters thrown together. Fate/Extella Link is the latest chapter in the Fate/Extra saga, picking up immediately after the events of 2016's Fate/Extella: The Umbral Star. In fact, this particular entry could easily be mistaken for an expansion to the previous game, as opposed to a self-contained story. While the story is an extension of the original's plot, with a new threat appearing to try to take control of the Moon Cell Automaton's power, the gameplay and presentation are virtually unchanged. The game relies heavily on button mashing during its action sequences, with players whipping out swords, spears, and other melee attacks mixed with flashy magic spells to wipe out rooms filled with generic virtual armies.

While there's not a lot of strategy required to tear through the throngs of enemies, there's still some element of skill to get the best timing down and link together massive chained combos. Still, it's a repetitive formula that's thankfully broken up with some light role-playing elements. But one major change in Fate/Extella Link is the addition of local and online multiplayer support for up to eight players. Four-on-four matches bring both a co-op and a competitive element to the tried-and-true formula, as well as that classic feel of gathering with friends at an arcade and wearing out the buttons of an old-school beat-'em-up. And make no mistake, the game is definitely a test of your controllers' endurance. Still, it's an interesting story, especially if you're already a fan of the Fate/Extra series. If you're a newcomer, it sort of feels like you've walked into the theater halfway through the movie, though you can fill in the gaps if you're patient and observant.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about sexuality in media. What are some of the ways that sexuality is expressed in things like video games, movies, etc.? How can parents best discuss subjects like sex in fiction and how "sex sells"?

  • Is the impact of the violence in Fate/Extella Link affected by the fact that you're fighting hundreds of generic opponents? Would it be intensified if you were fighting a more realistic opponent or if there was more blood or gore?

Game details

Themes & Topics

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For kids who love hack-and-slash action with a historical twist

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