By Chad Sapieha,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Rhythm shooter puts gamers in hell fighting demons.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
The story glamorizes violence and the concept of vengeance. Play could encourage an interest in music.
Positive Role Models
The player's character is a violence-obsessed demon that slays other demons.
Ease of Play
The first-person shooter controls are standard, but it takes time to get used to the concept of shooting on beat. Players can adjust difficulty prior to each stage.
Violence & Scariness
The player's character uses guns to shoot demonic creatures in hell. Defeated enemies break into bits and emit a dark, smoke-like fluid that quickly evaporates. Stunned enemies can be defeated with quick, stylized melee moves.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
The word "hell" appears frequently in text and dialogue.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Metal: Hellslinger is an downloadable first-person shooter with rhythm elements for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series S/X, Xbox One, and Windows PCs. Players are placed in the role of a winged, horned warrior called The Unknown who is on a quest of vengeance, with the ultimate goal of tracking down and destroying The Red Judge. To do this she battles her way through various hellscapes, fighting demons using pistols, a shotgun, a sword, and a magic skull, among other weapons. She shows no hesitation when fighting and clearly enjoys violence. Defeated enemies emit clouds of dark, smoky fluid (which might be interpreted as blood) before bursting apart, blackened bits of their bodies scattering across the ground. The game's shtick is that The Unknown does more damage if you time her attacks to the fast-paced heavy metal score, which is performed by artists from well known hard rock bands such as System of a Down and Lamb of God, which could stir players' interest in music. The combination of hard guitar riffs and visceral combat is meant to heighten the sense of euphoria players experience as they blast their way through waves of challenging enemies. The word "hell" appears frequently in game text and dialogue.
Where to Play
Videos and Photos
There aren't any parent reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.
What’s It About?
METAL: HELLSINGER combines the genres of first-person shooter and rhythm games to create a heavy metal-fueled adventure through Hell. Players take on the role of The Unknown, a violent demon carving a path of destruction through brimstone and monsters on her way to face The Red Judge and claim vengeance. She wields a variety of weapons -- mostly fantasy-themed guns, such as Persephone, a shotgun that can shoot right through enemies to take down multiple foes in a line -- that become more powerful if the player repeatedly fires in rhythm with the beat of the game's hard rock soundtrack. As the damage multiplier grows, the music transforms and becomes more layered, with driving vocals eventually added once the player hits x16. New songs and weapons are introduced as players move through the game's various "hells," each of which consist of a series of areas where waves of demons and monsters spawn before culminating in a boss fight. Once players have completed a level, they can replay it with an aim to improve their rank on online leaderboards.
Is It Any Good?
Designed to appeal to players who love heavy metal, first-person shooters, and rhythm challenges, this is the very definition of a niche game. But the good news is that if you happen to fall into this select group, Metal: Hellsinger is probably going to rock your world. The music is the main highlight. Featuring gifted vocalists from bands including Lamb of God, System of a Down, Trivium, Arch Enemy, and more, these carefully crafted songs are remarkably effective in the way they increase the player's adrenaline, with crescendos that sync up perfectly with crests in the gun battles. And it's not just the shooting that impacts the music and multiplier, but also other activities such as dashing, finishing moves, and reloading. Indeed, the game encourages players to feel -- and respond to -- the beat in virtually every action they take, making for a surprisingly emotive adventure (at least if you happen to like heavy metal).
The rest of the experience isn't quite as original, but it is competent. The first-person shooting feels polished and satisfying, with fun little extras like ultimates -- special attacks for each weapon that slowly charge through battle -- thrown in to provide mini-goals and keep things interesting. Firing on beat rather than firing whenever you feel like it is a little disconcerting to start, but most players should have a pretty good sense of the timing required by the time they finish the first level. What might turn off some budget-conscious buyers, though, is the short play time. Most people will be able to easily finish the game in under five hours, and replaying levels for better scores only goes so far. Metal: Hellsinger provides a welcome new twist by combining a pair of long-established genres, and it's fun while it lasts. It'd just be nice if it lasted a little longer.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about violence in games. Is the impact of the violence in Metal: Hellsinger affected by the musical score of gameplay? How does the music attempt to enhance the emotion players feel while shooting weapons by pairing the violence with powerful music. What relationship do you see between violence and music?
How do you feel about stepping into the shoes of a character that clearly isn't "good" in the traditional sense? Is it more difficult to root for them?
- Platforms: Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 5, Windows
- Pricing structure: Paid ($39.99)
- Available online?: Available online
- Publisher: FunCom
- Release date: September 15, 2022
- Genre: First-Person Shooter
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- ESRB rating: T for Blood, Use of Tobacco, Violence
- Last updated: September 14, 2022
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.
Suggest an Update
Where to Play
Our Editors Recommend
Best Fantasy Movies
Romantic Fantasy Books for Teens
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