Firewall Zero Hour

Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
Firewall Zero Hour Game Poster Image
Engaging, immersive VR tactical shooter with bloody combat.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

There are no messages. Technically, it's a "good vs. evil" story, but missions are resolved only by killing others.

Positive Role Models & Representations

You can play as one of 12 contractors, each of whom can have their looks and abilities tweaked. Little is known about each character, but you're a hired mercenary who's tasked with killing others to accomplish your goals.

Ease of Play

VR game takes some getting used to -- whether you use DualShock 4 wireless controller or PS Aim controller -- but there's a tutorial mode to try out before you play online against other human players (PVP modes). Over time, motions will feel intuitive as you perform hand gestures in real life to interact with virtual environment.

Violence

Players use various firearms, like machine guns, from first-person perspective to take down other team before they can do the same. While there's blood and violence, there's no excessive gore.

Sex
Language

There's no profanity in the game, but unmoderated content can expose players to inappropriate comments from other players.

Consumerism

Option for in-game purchases for additional downloadable content (DLC).

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Firewall Zero Hour is a first-person shooter for the PlayStation VR (PSVR). You'll form a squad and play against others in online player-vs.-player (PVP) battles. You can use handguns, machine guns, and explosives to kill enemies in a realistic fashion, and there's some blood, but no gore. Firewall Zero Hour also supports in-game purchases for downloadable content (DLC). While there are no language issues in the game's dialogue, the unmoderated chat means that players could be exposed to inappropriate content during multiplayer matches.

User Reviews

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What's it about?

FIREWALL ZERO HOUR is a squad-based virtual reality (VR) multiplayer tactical shooter. Hired by an anonymous person, you can choose to play as one of 12 private military contractors (each with a unique ability). You and your squad mates must work together to take on various objectives around the globe, such as acquiring (or protecting) a laptop of valuable data across multiple indoor and outdoor urban environments. Up to eight players can play (in two teams of four). Completing jobs and winning matches rewards you with currency and XP (experience points), which can be spent on upgrading skills and loadouts, unlocking new weapons and equipment, and cosmetic customization, too. Along with competitive multiplayer games, there are single-player and multiplayer training missions to help you practice your skills and tactics. 

Is it any good?

The controls (especially with the PS Aim controller), atmosphere, and well-designed maps help this VR tactical shooter truly stand out from other PlayStation VR games. The immersion level of Firewall Zero Hour, thanks to the PSVR, kicks up the action to another level, and this is further boosted with the use of the PS Aim controller over a regular DualShock 4 wireless controller. It's very engaging to literally extend your arms in real life and reach around a corner to fire at unsuspecting enemies. The impressive 360-degree graphics and 3D audio work together to create a realistic overall experience. The squad-based objectives are smart, and there's a lot you can buy with your earned XP or with real money. If you get a good group together, this is a really fun and challenging game, with good location and map variety.

The biggest shortcoming is that it only has one main game mode, Contracts, which might grow old for some after a few weeks of playing. Yes, you can customize the experience a bit (and each of the dozen contractors have a unique perk to start with), but it would be great if the developers added additional game modes over time -- perhaps a solid cooperative (co-op) mode (not just training) to significantly extend the legs of this game. Another issue is the game's long load times, which might also be fixed somewhat with an update, and you might be waiting around in a lobby for a while for everyone to join in. Finally, there isn't a huge assortment of weapons to use in combat. But this is a minor problem, because the weapons that are included feel very good in your hands when you use them. Overall, Firewall Zero Hour is tons of fun for those who enjoy this genre -- and it's even more enjoyable if you own the gun-shaped PS Aim controller for added immersion.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about violence in video games. Is the impact of the violence in Firewall Zero Hour affected by the immersive nature of virtual reality (VR)? Would the impact be lessened if there wasn't any blood shown during battle?

  • Does virtual reality add something to Firewall Zero Hour that you couldn't experience without the headset? Would you still want to play the game if it wasn't in VR?

Game details

Themes & Topics

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