What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know LocoCycle is a motorcycle combat game available only via download. Players control a sentient motorcycle that's a hazard to the roads, smashing into cars and pedestrians while being chased by soldiers. Players can make the motorbike shoot enemies or jump into the air and twist around in melee combat. There's no blood or gore, but the fighting is pretty much constant and lots of people die, including civilians. Worth noting: The game's joke-filled, live-action narrative scenes -- which go for cheap laughs at the expense of stereotypical representations of an African king, a Russian general, a Korean commander, and others -- are intended to be campy but have the potential to offend.
What's it about?
LOCOCYCLE is a vehicular-combat game about a sentient motorbike that gets struck by lightning and goes a little crazy. It blasts out of its garage -- its mechanic caught by the pant leg and dragged along for the ride -- before going for a chaotic drive along highways dense with cars. Giving chase are various types of soldiers, along with a second sentient bike. Players control the rogue bike, which is armed with guns and can leap into the air to perform a strange sort of mechanical kung fu, swinging pieces of its chassis -- and sometimes also its hapless mechanic -- to whack incoming assailants. Grades and points are earned based on style and accuracy and whether certain objectives have been met. Between levels players can upgrade various pieces of their bike to make it more powerful for the next stage.
Is it any good?
There's not a lot to like about this exclusive downloadable game for Xbox One. The live-action short movies that punctuate levels clearly are meant to be funny and outrageous but come off as lazy, dull, and -- thanks to some unimaginative stereotypes -- perhaps even a little offensive. The action, meanwhile, is downright dreary. Aerial melee combat is mostly a matter of button mashing, and shooting the exact same vehicles over and over again on the ground is pretty much the definition of repetitive.
Add on a heaping helping of bland artistry -- this is probably the ugliest game currently available for Xbox One, with highways filled with flavorless cookie-cutter cars and achingly dull scenery -- and you have a game with very little to recommend it. Close your eyes and pick an Xbox One game at random, and it's bound to be a lot better than LocoCycle.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about racial stereotypes. What is a racial stereotype? Why might it be offensive?
Families also can discuss playing as a character (or thing) that indiscriminately kills civilians. How does this make you feel? Do you attempt to avoid hurting innocents while playing? How do you think this adds to or detracts from the experience?