A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Kids learn about dinosaurs, archeology, paleontology, business management. Players can read up on different dinosaurs to see how fossils can give scientists a glimpse of dino DNA. Managing the park involves basic business tasks, with players required to make effective use of limited resources and consider customer safety while attempting to turn a profit.
Gameplay includes themes of capitalism and conservation. Designing an animal theme park may lead kids to consider the ethics of zoo-keeping and what it means to keep animals in captivity. Management side could encourage interest in business.
Positive Role Models
Text descriptions of park scientists give them simple backgrounds and motivations, mostly to do with science, research, animals. Major characters from film franchise provide voice-over narration, exhibiting various traits such as intelligence, smugness, caution, courage.
Ease of Play
Well-designed in-game tutorials efficiently lead players through all the rudiments, and first few story chapters are pretty easy. But game steadily grows in complexity, and if players forget how to do something, they may find themselves forced to experiment a bit to refresh their memory.
Violence & Scariness
Aggressive dinosaurs attack park guests, swallowing them whole, and charge at park ranger vehicles. Dinosaurs also attack each other and animals such as goats. Bloody piles of meat appear in feeders for carnivorous dinosaurs.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Jurassic World Evolution 2 is a theme park simulation and management game based on the Jurassic Park and Jurassic World film franchises for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PCs, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S. Players are tasked with breeding or capturing and then tending to the needs of a host of dinosaurs while drawing from limited financial resources, potentially receiving a few high-level, kid-friendly lessons on paleontology, conservation, and business management in the process. Some dinosaurs are aggressive and prone to attacking each other, park staff, and patrons, who can be swallowed whole by bigger dinosaurs. There's no blood involved in attack animations, but carnivorous dinos have feeders filled with bloody animal meat. While playing, some kids are likely to begin thinking about the ethics of zoo-keeping, and whether animals are better off in the wild or looked after in enclosures. Parents should also note that the action and storytelling are both heavily tied to the films and filled with familiar characters and scenarios. This could ignite (or reignite) kids' interest in the movies and all of their related merchandise.
Is It Any Good?
Management sims are a niche genre, but if you like the idea of building a sprawling public facility and managing a business, and you have an affinity for dinosaurs, this game should be right up your alley. Jurassic World Evolution 2 is basically the first game made bigger and better, with more modes, more realistic dinosaurs, and more ways to customize the experience. Regardless of whether you're new to the series or not, a good place to start is the story mode, which is composed of a series of missions that introduce both basic play concepts -- like ensuring your dinosaurs are properly cared for in their enclosures -- as well as more advanced elements, including how to manage your team of scientists based on their specialties. Fans of the films can then dive into Chaos Theory mode, which has missions based on all five movies from the film franchise that are challenging but fair. Eventually, most players will end up spending the bulk of their time in sandbox mode, where every feature of the game is unlocked, allowing for some truly imaginative park building.
What returning players will likely appreciate most, though, are the quality-of-life improvements. Park management has been made more robust, but also more intuitive. It's fun, for example, to go hands-on and jump in a helicopter to chase down and sedate a rampaging escapee or go out and examine how the inhabitants of a particular pen are faring, but later in the game when things get a little more hectic, you can have your staff take care of tasks like these with just a couple of button taps, freeing you to focus on other things. It's a good thing, too, since -- depending on the individual traits of the animals you capture and synthesize -- your dinosaurs may be prone to fighting or getting sick and require a little more attention than they needed in the first game. Plus, your scientists are now more apt to grow disgruntled when they're overworked, so you need to consider their contentedness as well. Jurassic World Evolution 2 doesn't revolutionize the management sim genre, but it's packed with features, loaded with callbacks to lines and events from the films, and is perhaps even just a little bit educational. A great option for the sim-loving dino fan in your family.
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.