A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Players work together help a world suffering in the aftermath of a feud between two goddesses.
Positive Role Models
Players get to build their own heroes - all with noble intent.
Ease of Play
There's a lot to learn, but the game does a great job of guiding new players and teaching new concepts in small, digestible chunks.
Violence & Scariness
Combat's a big part of the game, but it's cartoonish and non-bloody. Players use swords, magic, and other weapons against monsters.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some female characters wear sexy outfits.
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Unmoderated chat could expose players to inappropriate content.
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Products & Purchases
It's easy to play for free, but a store full of fun vanity items and power-ups is a big temptation. Latest installment in the Maplestory franchise.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that MapleStory 2 is a free-to-play downloadable massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) for Windows PCs based on the popular MapleStory series. The anime-style fantasy game takes place entirely online, and contains unmoderated player chat, friending, clubs, and in-game guilds. Some busty female characters wear sexy outfits. Players must create a Nexon account in order to play, and though it's possible to play for free, a robust in-game shop tempts players with a host of colorful vanity items and powerups. An in-game clothing design system lets players create their own logos and publisher Nexon is working to screen the ones made with offensive imagery. While combat's a large focus of the gameplay, with players using swords, spears, and magic to eliminate monsters, the cartoonish, non-bloody visuals limits the impact of fighting.
Is It Any Good?
This role-playing game (RPG) sequel marks a massive step forward for the fourteen-year-old MMO. Not only do the 3D graphics of MapleStory 2 give the game a much richer look, its many new activities gives players lots more to do. Many of the old limits have been removed, such as eliminating the original game's “pay-to-win” reputation. Unless you're constantly playing the game (not a healthy routine, to be sure), there's enough free content to keep you busy for months. Loads of places to explore, items to craft, and houses to build and decorate. If you're more combat focused, PvP (player versus player) and themed dungeons provide fun opportunities to test your skills. And if all this isn't enough, there's the silly, randomly-announced mini-games that pit you against a crowd of other players in good-natured party activities. MapleStory 2's main strength is how it trains new players. With all there is to do, there's lots to absorb, but it's done in a way that's entertaining. The new 3D graphics are so dang cute, and the custom mini-movies, animations, and semi-hidden details make it fun just to run around.
The one issue MapleStory 2 needs to work on is performance. In highly-populated fights, frame rate can drop, making the game stutter and slow down. Other concerns are more content-related: parents should be aware that player chat can contain inappropriate language and subject-matter, and provides opportunities for cyber-bullying. Also, some busty female characters in the game wear revealing outfits, and Nexon's currently working to screen out items made with the game's built-in clothing customization function (that lets players design their own in-game clothing) that contain politically-offensive imagery. Still, even with these technical and content-related issues, MapleStory 2 is a rare example of online RPG excellence and a fantastic free-to-play game for kids over ten.
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