Parents' Guide to


By Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

Cute but shallow fish tale with eco message makes no waves.

Game PlayStation 4 2016
Koi Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

There aren't any parent reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: Not yet rated
Kids say: Not yet rated

This ecological adventure has grand aspirations it never quite manages to achieve. It's clearly aiming to be a beautiful and relaxing game with a serious message and was likely at least partially inspired by ThatGameCompany's poetic Flower. But while Koi successfully achieves a calming atmosphere, it doesn't manage the subtly sophisticated aesthetic, play mechanics, or meaning of its muse.

Early stages set in natural environments have an appealing minimalist appearance, but man-made objects introduced in later stages -- boots, pipes, and gears -- have a decidedly underwhelming cardboard-cutout look that feels a bit cheap. And while swimming around can be fun and even soothing, the puzzles are poorly integrated and a bit jarring when they suddenly lift players out of the pond to begin picking leaves on a branch or spinning mosaic squares. Most problematic, though, is that the message -- pollution is bad for animals -- is simultaneously too blunt and too simplistic. Yes, pollution is bad, but how can we address it? What's the root problem? These ideas are never addressed, leaving players to either feel sorry for the fish or take some solace in the game's rather fantastical conclusion. A more symbolic expression of the same themes would have served Koi better.

Game Details

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.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate