Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole

 
(i)

 

Mission-based aerial combat game with fighting birds.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Any messages that can be gleaned from the story are about fighting evil, standing up against injustice, and protecting the innocent.

Positive role models

Shard the owl is a clearly heroic role model who doubts himself at first, but rises to the occasion when he is needed.

Ease of play

The flying and combat controls are relatively smooth. There's not too much to learn in terms of buttons or combos, so it should be generally simple for novice players to pick up. It's possible to do rather poorly and still complete missions -- you just won't earn a medal.

Violence

This is basically an aerial combat game. Your owl will fly through the air, aim himself at enemies (like crows or bats) with a targeting reticule, and then attack the winged baddies with his talons or hurl hot coals at them. During fights, birds may be tossed around, losing feathers and shrieking, and can sometimes be slammed into rocks or tossed into water.

Sex
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

The game is a tie-in to the new animated movie of the same name, which is in turn based upon the popular series of Guardians of Ga'Hoole books.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole is a rather violent tale with lots of fighting and scary scenarios, but that all the characters are birds (or other flying animals). The fantasy aspect may lessen the impact of the violence a bit, but it's definitely an integral part of the game. Fans of the Guardians books (and, we assume, the movie) will already be aware of the dark storyline and the frequency of fight scenes throughout the tale.

What's it about?

The Guardians of Ga'Hoole books contain a long and complicated history that could never be contained within one video game. What you get in LEGEND OF THE GUARDIANS: THE OWLS OF GA'HOOLE is the story of Shard, an orphan owl who grows up to become a guardian of the sacred Great Tree of Ga'Hoole. He and his feathered friends train to defend Ga'Hoole from the evil forces of the mysterious Pure Ones who want to take over the world. The game is mission-based and will have you battling the Pure Ones' crow and bat allies, rescuing kidnapped owlets, and freeing ally hostages. Once you've completed all the story missions in any of the five worlds, you can roam that world freely and take on numerous side missions.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

You don't have to be well-versed in the epic lore of the books (or even to have seen the movie) in order to enjoy the game, Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole. The lush, beautiful landscapes are really something special to look at (especially on the HD consoles) and the controls have a nice pick-up-and-play feel to them. The aerial dog-- er, birdfights are a blast to play. The actual attacks look pretty vicious and could definitely frighten little kids, but they're also quite exciting. There are a ton of different missions to work your way through, which together with the free-roam exploration aspect, adds up to many hours of unique gameplay. If you're a fan of air combat games, and think it would be interesting to swap your planes for birds, you can probably have a great time with the Guardians. 

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the violence in the game. Is the violence less impactful here because the characters are animals? MIght it actually bother some kids more than if the characters were human?

  • Parents and children can also compare the story here to that of the movie and the books. How does it differ across those three different media? Which version do you like best?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi
Price:$29.99–$49.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Warner Bros. Games
Release date:September 14, 2010
Genre:Action/Adventure
ESRB rating:E10+ for Fantasy Violence (Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi, Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360)

This review of Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole was written by

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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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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Teen, 13 years old Written byDomeafavorandread September 22, 2010
 
Horrible movie game.
Parent of a 5 year old Written bypaintdadanta September 4, 2012
 

Good but difficult

The game is very good with a variety of options. It is built more arcade style so you are not locked into one particular story line. My stepson is younger than the rating suggestions but since he was obsessed with the movie and was already good at video games we decided to try it. The content and concepts were good but the controls can be rather difficult at times. My husband and I struggled to complete some of the levels ourselves even though we play a variety of games. If you are looking for something complex or you are very good with controls then it could definitely be the game for you.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Kid, 10 years old March 13, 2011
 

cool and great fun

fast,furious and cool,this epic flawless game is a classic
What other families should know
Too much violence
Great messages
Great role models

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