Halo 3



Well-made series finale too violent for kids.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

You're a hero trying to save the world from a malevolent alien race, but you do it by using extreme force.


As with its predecessors, this game lets gamers shoot aliens from a first-person perspective with the gun seen on the screen at all times (unless you're riding in a vehicle or manning a turret). Blood that splatters can be alien or human. Weapons include shotguns, machine guns, bombs, grenades, turrets (for mowing down hordes of enemies in a flash), and special alien weaponry, including laser blasters.

Not applicable

Some occasional cursing can be heard in the single-player game, usually from teammates, including "s--t," "hell," and "damn." There are no "f--k"s.


Third and final title in this highly hyped video game series. While it's M-rated, parents will see product placement at Burger King, 7-Eleven, and other usually family-friendly businesses.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this adult game has been hyped by a massive advertising campaign that extends to normally kid-friendly establishments like Burger King and 7-Eleven. But the ESRB gave this first-person shooter game a "Mature" rating for violence for good reason. Throughout the game, players shoot aliens and humans using a variety of weaponry, and they'll see vivid images with blood. And know that when the Halo games are played online, players can communicate -- and curse -- via headsets.

What's it about?

This Microsoft Xbox 360 exclusive begins as your character -- super soldier Master Chief -- crash-lands on Earth and is recovered by teammates. Your first goal is to make your way through a densely populated forest with fellow space marines to uncover an alien base. While ducking behind trees, rocks, and waterfalls, you battle alien creatures that are loyal to the militaristic Covenant, an alien species that has long been fighting humanity. Expanding on the capabilities and features of its predecessors, HALO 3 lets up to four gamers play through the entire campaign together in a cooperative mode and allows you to record a portion of your game, like a homemade highlights reel, to play back at any time, from multiple camera angles.

Is it any good?


Not only is Microsoft Game Studios' HALO 3 the most eagerly anticipated video game of 2007, but this action-sci-fi series has become a cultural phenomenon, spawning novels, comics, action figures, and a top-secret project with Academy Award-winning director Peter Jackson (The Lord of the Rings).So the big question is: Does Halo 3 live up to the hype? Absolutely.

The extraordinary high-definition graphics, which include many non-interactive cinematic story sequences, push the limits of the Xbox 360. Thousands of lines of dialogue and a Hollywood-quality epic musical score also help you become immersed in this slickly produced sci-fi thriller. So whether you're an old fan or new to this franchise, Halo 3 is a must-own game for mature action or sci-fi lovers. Its gratifying solo campaign and many multiplayer modes, new features (including co-op play), and high production values all ensure that Halo 3 will live up to expectations.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about what makes the Halo games so popular. How are they different than other sci-fi shooters? For kids who want to play but have parents who put their foot down: What made you want to play this game? Why do you think Burger King and Mountain Dew helped tell kids about the game when the rating isn't T for "Teen" or E for "Everyone"?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360
Available online?Available online
Release date:September 25, 2007
Genre:First Person Shooter
ESRB rating:M for blood and gore, mild language, violence.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Adult Written bymirushominus June 27, 2009

It almost appears that Marc did not play Halo 3 at all, or at best is extremely unobservant

While reading the "What parents need to know" (I am currently trying to find a good reviewing site for games and movies I have not played) section of the review on Halo 3 it struck me that Marc was very wrong on a few points, and this may cause kids to miss out. First, Marc said: "Throughout the game, players shoot aliens AND HUMANS. You DO NOT shoot humans* in the campaign. It is possible, but if you do the marines attack you, as you are not supposed to attack them. ...and they'll see vivid images with blood. While playing campaign on Halo, if you shoot an alien, there is blood. Blue/Green blood, and that actually doesn't just pour out after you finish shooting. Also, there is zero dismembering/actual damage to dead bodies. And know that when the Halo games are played online, players can communicate -- and curse -- via headsets. Depending on your gamer zone on xbox live, there is generally very little swearing. But, if you so wish you may mute players (only to yourself) in games, or simply plug in a headset and turn the speech volume off. *Actually, in multiplayer, you do by default play as a human (albeit, a human in a suit that you only know is a human, there is no face, just metal) but if you so wish you can turn into one of the aliens (Sangheili, or Elites to be exact, the Arbiter is an example of this species, they have defected to humanities side) and fight that way. For overprotective parents who fear xbox live like a dangerous animal, you do not have to play on xbox live to play multiplayer, or the game at all. Also, as long as your child does not act stupid, no one will ever be able to access their real name, location, phone number, email address (phone number and email are needed to register for xbox live, but are not shown to the public) or even what they sound like. If you seriously look at the characters of Halo 3, you will find numerous good role models. Even John 117, Master Chief Petty officer, the soldier whose face is never shown, is extremely dedicated to the service of humanity. He is courteous, and many times goes out of his way and puts himself in danger to rescue his friends, in particular Sergeant Johnson. Parents, almost every concern you have about Halo 3 will be dispelled upon actually investigating by playing the game and reading about it yourself. If it weren't for a very few uses of b***ard and b**ch Halo 3 would be rated teen.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Great role models
Parent of a 16 year old Written byprotectiveparent93 July 5, 2010

It's not bad at all

This site has to be the most inaccurate site I have ever seen in my life. The main character, Master Chief, is a spartan who is trying to protect the planet Earth from the Flood, a spore, virus like species, that is spreading through the galaxy and must be stopped. In the Halo ODST review on this site, it stated that the human race never tried to pursue less violent means of settling this. I was astounded. The Flood is a mindless race of aliens that are attempting to wipe out the human race. There are no agreements. It is the human race's final stand to protect planet earth. Now on to the concerns. Throughout this game, there is blood coming from aliens that is either purple, blue, or green. There is no gore. The violence is no worse than Star Wars (or something along the lines of that). And honestly, if your kid hasn't heard "D**n" or something like that, you must have him under high protection. And chances are, he's heard it from you. This game should be rated "T" for Teen.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 12 years old August 14, 2010

my 6 year old brother has more commen sense than commen sense.

at the beggining of the review, it said that you must use force to save humanity from the aliens. HOW ELSE ARE YOU SUPPOSE TO DO IT! DEMOCRATIC DISSCUSION?


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