Heroes of Ruin

Common Sense Media says

Solid dungeon crawler with a focus on fantasy fighting.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

Learning(i)

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Themes of honor and courage emerge as the story progresses, but the bulk of the game is squarely focused on glamorized fantasy combat and treasure hunting.

Positive role models

The game's heroes are a motley lot of skilled fighters, but they don't have much opportunity to reveal who they really are or what they might be thinking. Players can shape their personalities a little by accepting or refusing side quests and requests for help, but these characters tend to come off as mostly mute warriors who go where they're told and fight anyone who gets in their way. 

Ease of play

The game's hack 'n' slash action is pretty straightforward. Players move with the circle pad and tap buttons to attack. Some functions are assigned to intuitive icons on the touch screen. Players cannot set the difficulty level to adjust for the ferocity of the beasts they face. Particularly tricky areas may force kids to join up with and seek out help from other players online.

Violence

Players take control of heroes who wield swords, magic, pistols, and other weapons as they fight a variety of fantasy characters, including goblins, demons, and devil-crabs. Action is presented from a raised, distant perspective. Enemies simply vanish once defeated. There are screams of pain, but no blood is seen in combat. However, old blood stains mark the floors of some dungeons.

Sex
Not applicable
Language

Mild cuss words, including "hell" and "damn," appear in the game's text dialogue.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

Creates privacy and safety concerns. Online multiplayer permits players to freely communicate with one another via voice chat, which means kids can share private information and might be exposed to inappropriate language and topics of discussion. This feature can be switched on or off in the game's options menu. Also, this game uses the Nintendo 3DS StreetPass feature, which automatically transfers player information to others, including their Mii character. This feature can be turned off, but young children should be cautioned to never use their real name as their Mii.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Heroes of Ruin is a dungeon-crawling role-playing game with lots of swords-and-sorcery fighting against fantastical creatures, but only a little blood. Its threadbare story doesn't offer much in the way of commentary or messages, and the game's heroes don't say much, preferring instead to let their weapons and magic do the talking. Parents should note that this is a rare 3DS title in which online play can become a major part of the experience, and that the game facilitates voice communication with strangers. Parents also need to remember that Nintendo is warning all parents not to allow kids age six and under to view the graphics in 3D because that viewing "may cause vision damage." The Nintendo 3DS offers parents the ability to lock out the use of 3D graphics in the system's Parental Controls.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Language & Reading

  • reading

Hobbies

  • collecting

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • applying information
  • decision-making
  • strategy

Collaboration

  • cooperation
  • meeting challenges together
  • teamwork

What Kids Can Learn

Heroes of Ruin wasn't created with educational intent, and we don't recommend it for learning.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Language & Reading

  • reading

Hobbies

  • collecting

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • applying information
  • decision-making
  • strategy

Collaboration

  • cooperation
  • meeting challenges together
  • teamwork

Heroes of Ruin wasn't created with educational intent, and we don't recommend it for learning.

This Learning Rating review was written by Chad Sapieha

Parents say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

Kids say

What's it about?

The action role-playing game HEROES OF RUIN begins with players creating a character -- you can choose between classes that specialize in swords, magic, pistols, and brawling -- before setting out on a quest to cure a cursed Ruinlord. But the story plays second fiddle to the action, a mix of hack 'n' slash dungeon crawling and treasure hunting. Players accept simple quests -- fetch this, kill that -- then set off to explore and battle their way through new areas teeming with monsters and demons, always keeping a lookout for better gear that will improve their character's stats. While the game can be completed alone, players are encouraged to journey in groups, either locally or online, which not only makes the adventure easier, but also increases the likelihood of finding better weapons and armor.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

While competent in design and free of glitches, there's not much that's meaningfully separates Heroes of Ruin from most other action-oriented RPGs. It tells a trite and predictable fantasy story, offers up run-of-the-mill melee combat, and delivers little in the way of memorable skills, abilities, and gear. Plus, its mildly cartoonish presentation is decidedly middling, featuring washed-out looking character designs, bland and blurry environments, and not nearly enough voiced dialogue. The ability to join up with other players online is a nice -- though not unique -- perk for a portable RPG. The promise of additional downloadable content has potential to add some new elements to the experience, but there's little here that will appeal to anyone beyond devoted fans of the genre.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about fantasy. What sort of wild and unbelievable things do you like to conjure up in your imagination? Have you ever considered putting them to paper in a story? What is it about fantasy that has made it an enduring human interest?

  • Families can also discuss online safety. What are some examples of appropriate things to talk about with strangers in online games? What might be considered inappropriate, or even dangerous?

Game details

Platforms:Nintendo 3DS
Price:$39.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Square Enix
Release date:July 17, 2012
Genre:Role Playing
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Adventures
ESRB rating:T for Fantasy Violence, Mild Blood, Mild Language (Nintendo 3DS)

This review of Heroes of Ruin was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

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.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Kid, 10 years old August 25, 2012
AGE
8
QUALITY
 
LEARNING

Heroes Of Ruin

cool, butlots of fighting and use of hell and amn plus osccasional use of die
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Essential Apps Guide