Parents' Guide to


By David Wolinsky, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Mystery set in wilderness is challenging, captivating.

Firewatch Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 18+
I love how there's nothing shown in the sex section because there's clearly a scene where the main character is shown naked in a drawing and little bits of stuff like that. Other than that the game is good.

This title has:

Too much swearing
2 people found this helpful.
age 16+

Rewarding, story-driven game with themes on the realities and complexities of adulthood - only older teens might relate

There is a lot to love about Firewatch from its simple gameplay and clear structure to its superb voice acting and lush visuals. It's an interactive story adventure that deals quite brazenly with the shades of grey that adulthood is known for. The two central characters in Firewatch are neither all good nor all bad but are just as likely to behave selfishly as they are altruistically. Aside from some swearing (f***, s***, etc.) it is this depiction of imperfect adults dealing with adult problems that makes the game unsuitable for younger players. I found it refreshing to experience a game brave enough to address such topics as loneliness, infidelity, trust, and resilience in a way that feels very grown-up. Worth a play for adults and perhaps older teens as well. I've taught this as a media text in a senior level high school English class before with mixed results. Some students, 16-18 year olds, really engaged with it while others didn't quite have the maturity to accept some of the messages the game presented and were thus indifferent to it.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5):
Kids say (16):

This adventure goes from a slow crawl to a fairly captivating and strange mystery, which means you'll need to stick with it for a bit longer than you might initially like, but it's worth it. There's a learning curve to, essentially, unlearning what a lot of video games have taught you: that you can navigate any area easily thanks to an on-screen mini-map. There's no such thing here, and you have to dutifully consult a compass and map to point yourself in the right direction -- be it to find how to make your way to smoky areas out in the woods or get to a specific creek. Just because you know something is west of where you are doesn't mean you can simply point yourself in that direction and go. You'll need to look all around for drops to take or rock faces to climb. That also means you can, and will, get lost repeatedly. And although the map isn't enormous, it's big enough for you to unintentionally go in circles and loops.

But when the game unfolds as intended, with engaging dialogue between yourself and your boss, Delilah, the game develops extremely well. You buzz in to report on everything you find, and as you're new on the job, she's able to get you up to speed on what you're seeing and where to go next. When the aforementioned mystery -- conspiracy? -- that's best left unspoiled here starts to set in, you'll start wondering whether you can trust Delilah, or whether you can trust the feelings that start to develop between you and she. Do you try to make it work with your wife? Will you survive the summer? Will you end up arrested and implicated for a mysterious crime you didn't commit? These questions all run through your mind as you work through Firewatch, which makes it well worth sticking through to the very end.

Game Details

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