Parent reviews for MapleStory

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Common Sense says

age 12+

Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 13+

Based on 8 reviews

Kids say

age 9+

Based on 41 reviews

age 18+

Maplestory not a kids game, full of child predators.

I have played Maplestory since I was 9 years old. I am turning 20 now and I guess I've played this game for over half my life. YIKES. Though the early years were completely innocent and fun, this is when I actually enjoyed the game very much. Of course, my academics suffered as a result of my addiction to this 2D player game, like many other kids who are addicted to Maplestory. I do not blame Maplestory like the many other kids for my failures in high school. I own up and acknowledge my own mistakes of not being balanced enough between homework and video gaming. But what I do blame Maplestory for is the lack of protection it has for underage children. Though Maplestory is a game designed for 12 year olds, the vast majority of the population of the video game is aged 17+. There are countless stories of older men taking advantage of little girls as young as 9 on the video game platform and it happens quite frequently because parents view it no more than an innocent video game. Usually these predators will lure the children outside of the video game where they will have contact with the victim. Though I have played this game for what is now 11 years, I did not hear about this until about 3 years ago. So I urge you parents to please keep your kids away from this game. The countless horrible stories I've heard from people and witnessed, don't let this be your kid. Feel free to message me for context.
age 12+

Innocent Fun, Becomes a Habit, Burns Through Your (or a parent's) Wallet - and You Didn't Even Know It

Yes, I have succumbed to this game in my middle school years and I have survived it to this day with a bit of back and forth. I've watched as this game grew from an open beta to the worldwide phenomenon it is now and I have a lot to say about it when it comes to the generation now and the ones climbing right behind. I will tell you now that it becomes all too real as you're sucked into the world of pixelated heroes. I began playing the game just like how most of the other players began playing the game: word of mouth. The time I began was before Internet advertisements (and even TV advertisements) ran through their campaigns and before the premium currency cards were distributed anywhere (in short, a super-long time ago.) At first, I played through the game and learned the ropes - attacking, skills, "levelling-up" attributes I thought were necessary (and later learning thoroughly) and getting stronger for the bragging rights to my friends. Innocent, fun gameplay, right? = MONEY = (I feel this is appropriate to talk about first because that's what most parents are going to feel the most concern about.) All of a sudden, the ride of a fun game became blinding because, everywhere my character went, I saw other pretty-looking, well-decorated players with clothing that made their characters look cool and flashy... some with pets and the ability to perform special actions. Obviously, what I saw was what I wanted. In the past and, of course, in my younger age, I thought, "Money!? Where am I going to get that much? $15? $30? I need to get money fast." Of course, my parents, luckily, said "no" back then. Of course, I went to seek alternatives, so there were (at the time.) At the time, there was an underground-ish marketplace that required innocent players to perform advertisement-filled marketing surveys and data-mining websites to earn an average of $0.12~$1.00 per approved submission (which would often-times fail due to the development of cross-checking public records because the younger and more-desperate visitors would most likely submit fraudulent information to those third-party websites.) The visitors would also be rewarded for flooding the Internet's many mediums of communication with "referral links" to supplement their already-slow earnings. In the end, after around a month or two, these desperate players would submit for their ultimate reward: PayPal funds or a Game Card for the game. I can only provide you this information because I was sucked into doing such things and, believe me, I've earned and I've learned. (If money motivates your youngster, let them know their future now because they can "Maple" all they want when they earn big.) Did I mention that, at one time, you can pay in Cash through the mail? Crazy, right? (Now, it's MoneyGram for the United States-based payers.) The total money I've spent, you might ask? Almost $400. Talking big? Yes, I am. Not only can the money be spent on playing dress-up or buying add-on items to enhance your gameplay, you can even "get married" in the game, get random/rare items with an expensive ($2.70-per-play) random-dispense ticket. Don't get me wrong, there are items that cost $27 as an entire package meant to save money (but let us not forget their expiry dates.) Add up some "black market" possibilities like using real money to buy the virtual currency "mesos" obtained immorally and infamously by underpaid Chinese "farmers" who, much like the manufacturing plants for our electronics, live and work in terrible conditions. Let's not get depressing here, I want to get to the good parts. = GAME FLOW = Pre-"Big Bang" era, the game was not a quick flick-and-go flow... and that was the best part of it compared to what it is today. Players had to invest a lot of time into increasing their characters' skill levels, abilities and overall level while balancing out on obtaining the virtual currency, procure items that make their characters tactically stronger in battle and venturing with other fellow players to train with each other through grinding or playing through "Party Quests", or "PQs" as it is abbreviated. Advancing to the 70th level was the goal many were "all-the-rage" about as new skills were learned after the largest gap between "job advancements", which was what every class of character had to add to their arsenal of skills (which are, nonetheless, impressive in battle.) At the time, getting sucked into the game was pretty hit-or-miss because you were either motivated to level-up or tired of it and give up after a few months due to the higher time of investment needed. Spending all that time after-school made me re-think myself. Following the "Big Bang" era came the game's largest revamp - the maps and design were given a major facelift, which supposedly gave new players an advantage to easily navigate throughout the world and gave old/veteran players a challenge and a reason to return to the game. What it did manage to do is butcher the game enough to remove the excitement of leveling up with some effort. (Hint: You can now go from Lv. 1 to Lv. 120 in a week.) There were tons of new quests to embark on, but the game quickly grew to become more repetitive than ever. "Inflation" took a gigantic hit on the in-game economy and the simplicity of a once-innocent game became a complex shopping center involving virtual and premium currency. No one knows why, but it just increases the amount of money spent. All games have to "grow-up", but sometimes, growing up isn't for the best. = COMMUNITY = I should remind the readers that it's a part of the Internet where a lot of things fly and the nets won't stop them all. The game does teach you a lot of how weird and vulgar the Internet can be. "Trolls" are inevitable, but they're there 24/7. There is a fresh mix of tweens, teens and young adults on the game, so results of online interaction DO vary greatly. There are a mix of innocently-generous people and ill-mannered people. Not all vulgarity is censored and some censored vulgarities are only marked in asterisks (where, in the past, the entire message was downright erased and the sending player receives a textual warning.) Keep in mind that there is, apparently, a feature where a chat room filled with random participants can be initiated at any time. Some may be complete strangers as participants or it could be a private "friends-only" room. Either way, that's worth noting now. = OVERALL = The game today has lost some of its quality and originality once seen in the long-past. It should not be mistaken that this game can really act as a vacuum to a wallet and the irrecoverable time investment towards this game can become a really lengthy thought process, as you've probably read from my reflections above toward this game. It has really been a crazy ride and I go back to see what has changed from time to time - which also makes this game able to re-capture me back for shorter periods from time-to-time. Too much is too much, so moderation is seriously needed for the players of this game and it takes mutual contribution by the parents, players and game developer/publisher to make sure this game does less "invisible harm."

This title has:

Easy to play/use
Too much consumerism
age 13+

Worst game by far

Maple story. How bad can you get? Apart from the lame graphics and story lines, the community is just poor (literally). The game is a joke. I mean, when you first start the game, It isn't too bad, you make friends and play the game, but then, after a while, you feel like you need to actually PLAY the game-the game that Nexon deliberately set up which involves 2 main things. 1: Your time 2: Your Money. I'm telling you, you'll spend $$ on this game after you actually "get into" the game, and if you have children that play this game, there will be a high chance they'll get addicted to it and steal your money for their "virtual premium currency" known as "nexon cash" or "nx" Then this will continue to loop until you spend so much money it's just ridiculous, but of course this doesn't apply to everyone but most players have experienced this. Overall I would rate this game "maplestory"1/5. Such a waste of time, Don't Bother.

This title has:

Too much consumerism
age 13+

Not the best for kids or regular mmorpg players

Adult language are not block on there like you can still say words replacing it with numbers like s3x. This game doesn't teach your kids anything. People are often greedy. You hit monsters all day to get stronger. You can also waste 5x the cash of a normal monthly paying game to also get stronger. Nexon worries only about money into their game. They are a company not your babysitter. GM's in Nexon serves no purpose unless it's some kind of paypal or payment problem.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
age 17+

Thirteen and up (at least) for language and the dangers of open chat

I've played this game for over six years. As an adult with considerable discernment, I've made several long-distance friends, some of whom are international. It's this aspect of the game that keeps me playing as I've made several long-term friends there. But as a parent I would strongly caution other parents to consider their children carefully before allowing them to play. Yes, there are language filters in the game, but most of the older children playing this game know how to sidestep them. I do not allow my own children to play before the age of 13, and then when and if they do play, they are in my guild (a shared group of friends in addition to your own "buddies") so I can keep an eye on them. As mentioned by another reviewer, characters can get married (something I do not allow my children to do) in game when a "wedding" is purchased with actual cash. My husband made a character so our characters could marry in game as I didn't want to be even virtually married to anyone but him. The spending aspect everyone is warning you about is really not a problem if you understand a few things. First, a child (or anyone else) playing this game cannot spend actual cash by accident. You don't have to worry that a child exploring the content of the game could possibly rack up a huge bill to surprise you. Before NX cash (what they call their online currency which represents actual cash) is spent, it must be loaded onto the account. This is accomplished on the website, either through the purchase in a physical store near you of their Karma Koin cards, or through a credit card transaction. Beware if your child has stolen your credit card in the past, as this would allow them to load their account. Outside of that, it's very easy to play this game while spending absolutely no actual cash at all. Characters can purchase clothing (armor, weapons, accessories) using the in game virtual currency (mesos) that are earned by killing cartoon monsters of various types. The monsters drop mesos, equipment items, and "etc." drops which are either used in quests or can be sold back to the Non Played Characters (NPC's) for more mesos. All of this equipment is sufficient for playing the game. A few of the "cash shop" (the in-game store where actual money is spent) items are very useful while playing, but are not required. Use this as a good opportunity to teach your children about wise spending. Buying $10 of nx a few times a year would not be a problem for most families and would provide the added lesson that buying an entire "for looks only" outfit from the cash shop (cash shop outfits are worn "on top of" your in-game armor for looks only....they do not provide your character with any benefits outside of a fashion statement) which lasts 90 days is a waste of money. At times there are permanent clothing items offered in the cash shop for a limited time, but there are more expensive in the short run (2 or 3 times more expensive but they don't expire). Other things like a pet, which offers functionality while playing the game, can also be bought as a permanent item during special cash shop sales. If, like me, your budget is far too tight to allow even $10 or $20 in nx purchases a year, you can earn nx in game through the Maple Trading System shop. You collect items in game with your character as you complete quests and then you can sell them there to other players like a virtual flea market. Nexon (the maker of MapleStory) takes some of the nx involved in the transaction as a form of "tax", the seller gets to keep the rest. Each posting of an item (or bundle of one item if it's an etc. drop) costs 5,000 mesos to post. This method of earning "cash" for the items you want is not going to be fast or easy. But isn't that the lesson you want your kids to learn about money anyway? A lot of effort and considerable savvy and patience will have to be employed to earn nx for a permanent pet and it's accompanying permanent equipment and item slot expansions (the most useful cash shop items in my opinion, and ones that are permanent and do not expire in 30 or 90 days). I utilize this approach myself, so it can be done. Outside of the language issues and the conversation that needs to take place about the cash that can be spent (each family should decide what's appropriate to be spent and stick to it), there can be some very educational aspects to this game. It certainly could educate about a virtual (and by extension a real) economy with not much work. I've often thought that economics professors should take a good look at this game for educating students about all the aspects of supply and demand. It takes work to gather items, and there's a chance in the process of gathering items considered valuable in game. The prices between players (both in the nx sales which occur in the Maple Trade System shop, and in the mesos sales which occur in the "free market" where players sell items to one another for mesos currency) fluctuate based on supply and demand. An item that's easy to get, no matter how useful it is, is going to have a low price. Items that are extremely useful and rare will have a high price. And there's competition between players to sell the same item, which affects how much can successfully be charged by the seller. There's also the benefit of learning to shop around, which takes time and some skill, and the disadvantage of being impatient as you search for an item you want to buy. All of these lessons are valuable in real life, not just the game. There's also the teamwork necessary for the harder quests and more advanced (higher level character required) party quests. There's an entire code of ettiquette in game as to what's acceptable and what's not. I would strongly encourage any parent to PLAY a game before turning your child loose in it. I got started with online gaming because I refused to allow my children (the oldest was 11 at the time) to play a game (Disney's Toontown) before I'd checked it out first. I really wish more parents would do this. First, it gave me the benefit of learning what behavior would be rude, what would be helpful or polite, and what my child was likely to encounter while playing. In teaching your children to be polite in a store, you don't try to do that without ever entering a store yourself, right? The same holds true online. How your children treat people online DOES matter. There are real people on the other end of that internet connection that are being helped or hurt by your child's actions and either politeness or rudeness. I've encountered appalling behavior by supposed pre-teens and teens that I wish their parents could be made aware of. I truly believe if more parents played these games, either alone or alongside their children, the general demeanor in game would change drastically. Although your child would certainly have no trouble spending several hours at a sitting playing this game (of course it's addicting or the company would not make money from players who continue to play!.. ever seen a restaurant serving horrible food remain in business?), you are the parent. Establish guidelines for your child's play. How many hours will you allow play? Should they have homework and chores completed before they may play? May they only play on weekends, or are weekdays acceptable if schoolwork is complete. Perhaps they need to "earn" time for play by doing certain chores? You're the parent! Don't allow whining and "but they want to" to be the deciding factor in what they are allowed to do. It's your job to protect them. If any game is having an adverse affect on your child, then eliminate it. It shouldn't matter how much they might complain or yell or be angry with you. Only you can decide what's appropriate for THAT child. Make sure you teach them about online safety before allowing your child to play any online game with any form of chat. Do not trust chat filters to completely protect your child. Children should never give out information like their location (beyond country and state) to anyone online. Online friends are "strangers" and kids need to be taught that. No phone numbers, schools, streets, cities should ever be discussed, and if someone online asks for that information your child should immediately tell you about it so you can take appropriate action. It might be an innocent question from another young online gamer, but don't expect your child under 12 to figure that out for themself. Sharing what state/country you are in is fine in my opinion...makes it interesting to see where the people you meet are from. Beyond that, it's not safe. Teach them to never share their last name. If their first name is unusual, you might even pick an online nickname for them to give out as an extra precaution. Don't share emails, and don't visit webpages you hear about in game. These cautions will be obvious to any parent who plays online games. It makes you more aware of the dangers that must be avoided.

This title has:

Educational value
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
age 10+

Good for kids over age 10.

Although there is a language filter, but some "creative" people find ways around it. For instance, they use numbers to fill in spaces to make the word look like a profanity.

This title has:

Too much swearing
age 10+

Maplestory

Pretty good game, I actually got addicted to this for quite sometime, but as time went by, and Nexon took over the franchise, its not even worth playing anymore. But still a 5 star game.
not rated for age

An addictive time sucker

This game, well, it's hard to suceed and some lifeless losers spend days on the computer bvecaus ethey are hooked. I sadly am too, so don't get sucked into the vortex of Maplestory!!!