A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
This is an open-world action game that glorifies superhero-like violence, though with little in the way of blood and no gore. It’s designed to make players think about their actions and the way they want their character to behave and evolve. However, it does not attempt to push players toward acts of good over those of evil. Morality is optional.
Positive Role Models
The game’s hero is neither good nor bad by design. Instead, it’s up to players to determine whether to have him act like a hero or a villain. Side missions provide opportunity to perform altruistic acts, like obtaining medical supplies that will benefit civilians, or selfish and evil ones, such as killing activists protesting our character’s presence in the city. There are no significant negative consequences to acting evilly; it simply alters the narrative and the way non-player characters behave around the protagonist.
Ease of Play
Basic controls are simple to master, but the game becomes more complex as players unlock new abilities. It’s also quite a bit more difficult than its predecessor; even veteran gamers can expect plenty of mission failures and restarts.
Violence & Scariness
Players fight human and quasi-human enemies, primarily with electrical attacks that see victims writhing and grunting in pain, swathed in coils of energy. Blood occasionally sprays from defeated foes. Players have the option of targeting and attacking civilians throughout the game, and can leach away the life of helpless pedestrians, killing them.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A red light district features enormous neon signs depicting provocatively clad women in sexually suggestive poses. Night club signs advertise sex and “nude girls,” though there is no sex or nudity in the game.
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Dialogue is mostly free of profanity, though instances of words including “bitch” and “s--t” can be heard throughout the game.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
The player’s character does not imbibe alcohol or takes drugs, but other characters can be seen drinking and, in at least one instance, reference narcotics.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Infamous 2 is a third-person action game with mature themes concerning morality, though its content remains tame enough to maintain a “Teen” rating. Blood, sexual innuendo, and profanity are present, but are of a quantity and quality fairly described as moderate. That said, players will contend with plenty of game scenarios in which they have the opportunity to hurt or kill civilians. The story doesn’t push players toward being good or evil, but instead leaves it up to each player to choose how he or she wants to act. Moral decisions impact the narrative and how non-player characters view the game’s hero. Players can customize missions that can be downloaded by other players, but there is no opportunity for online communication with strangers.
Is It Any Good?
It’s not as fresh or inventive as the original, but Infamous 2’s open-world super hero action should still prove compelling for older teens and adults. His superpowers, which include everything from acrobatic climbing and the ability to telekinetically move objects to wielding lightning bolts and healing civilians with the power of electricity, are as much fun to use as they’ve ever been. And there is no shortage of things to do in New Marais. Just run around for a few seconds and a new holdup, kidnapping, user-generated mission, or morality-based side quest will pop up.
But while the action is still here, the storytelling has slipped. It was interesting to see how Cole reacted to his newfound abilities in the original game, but now he seems one-dimensional and a little bit power hungry. He needs more internal conflict to keep us interested in him as a character -- something developer Sucker Punch will need to work on if they want to maintain our attention in future games.
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.