A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
The game has an overall theme of good versus evil. Characters fight for their own generally honorable motivations, but it's still basically just an excuse to get everyone together for one-on-one combat.
Positive Role Models
Diverse cast of characters, most of which are following their own callings and motivations. While many are portrayed as heroic, some are more roguish or even evil characters with selfish motivations. Still, these aren't addressed on any deep level, and just provide a backdrop for the fights.
Ease of Play
Fighting is surprisingly easy to pick up and play for the amount of depth and diversity of the characters' abilities.
Violence & Scariness
This is a fighting game, so violence is key to the experience. Still, most moves are flashy effects and over-the-top animations. Players use combinations of medieval weapons, melee attacks, and magical abilities to defeat opponents. Some blood does occasionally appear on-screen, but no extreme or graphic depictions of violence.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Many female characters are shown in a sexualized manner, with lots of cleavage, bare buttocks, etc., all spotlighted through convenient camera angles.
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The word "ass" appears occasionally in dialogue.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Granblue Fantasy: Versus is a fantasy 2.5D fighting game available on PlayStation 4 and Windows PCs. Players choose from a roster of characters from the popular Granblue Fantasy series and fight in either local or online matches against other players or play solo in the game's story mode. Since this is a fighting game, violence is constant, with players using a combination of medieval weapons, magic, and martial arts against opponents. The violence is over-the-top and exaggerated, but there's little blood ever actually shown on-screen. Many female characters are presented in a sexualized manner, with lots of exposed cleavage and the like, accentuated by convenient camera angles. Characters also make comments laced with sexual innuendo.
Is It Any Good?
If you've never heard of the Granblue Fantasy series before now, you're probably not alone. The mobile role-playing series from Cygames has been a huge hit in Japan for more than six years now, but it's so far failed to find a niche for itself in the States, which, oddly enough, actually works in Granblue Fantasy: Versus' favor. Without any preconceived notions or expectations to measure up to, it's an opportunity to introduce the franchise's unique flavor to a whole new audience. It doesn't hurt that the fighting mechanics have been handled by Arc Systems Works, the folks behind the hit BlazBlue and Guilty Gear fighting games. Using similar gameplay mechanics, Granblue Fantasy: Versus is surprisingly easy to pick up and play, with basic combos that string together smoothly. It's great for beginners looking to feel like they're brawling champs, while those with more experience can start to pick up on the nuances of the game's timing to show off that there's more involved than button mashing.
As much fun as the fighting in Granblue Fantasy: Versus can be, it's not perfect by any means. For starters, when playing the solo story mode, the game shifts from a fighting game to more of a side-scrolling beat-'em-up style of play. Players take on swarms of enemies, broken up by the occasional boss fight. It's a boring and repetitive shift on gameplay that's just not a lot of fun. If not for the fact that this is the only way to expand on the characters' story in any significant way, this would be a mode best ignored in the grand scheme of things. Besides, actually fighting in the standard versus modes more than makes up for the story mode's shortcomings.
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.