A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
The idea is to "restore freedom" to America, but it's done through catastrophic violence.
Positive Role Models
The President of the United States is a mech-wearing superhero who "saves" America by causing rampant death and destruction.
Ease of Play
Gameplay is easy to dive in and start shooting, but challenges get tougher as missions progress.
Violence & Scariness
Over-the-top violence has players killing hundreds of people and destroying well-known cities with lots of guns. Blood is frequently shown as a result of attacks.
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Mild profanity like "damn" and "hell" are used in dialogue.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Metal Wolf Chaos XD is a third-person shooter for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows PCs. The basis of the game is over-the-top violence, and players are rewarded for killing hundreds of enemy soldiers and destroying large sections of numerous U.S. cities. The game's focus is guns: not only using them, but researching and developing them. Players can choose from among one hundred ranged weapons, (including flamethrowers and missile launchers) and can use eight of them at a time. Players are penalized for killing innocent hostages and rewarded for saving them. The story raises contemporary political issues including the government imposing martial law and suppressing and distorting the media. There's also mild swearing, including "damn" and "hell."
Is It Any Good?
Despite its non-stop violence, this absurdly over-the-top shooter deserves a pass thanks to its simple, non-realistic graphics and tongue-in-cheek political message. Though fifteen years old, Metal Wolf Chaos XD exaggerated gameplay is still good fun, and its themes of restricted political freedoms and overreach of government power make it a great way to spark a discussion of contemporary political developments. In fact, with its satirical take on both the news media ("DNN" instead of "CNN") and on the way governments manipulate information, it's hard to believe it was made before "Fake News" became part of our national vocabulary. The focus here is nonstop, outrageous destruction, which is understandably disturbing in a time and in a country where mass shootings have become commonplace. The game offers a caricatured take on American culture with its ultra-manly President Wilson, Western ghost town, and money-soaked Hollywood mansions, but this isn't as exaggerated as it used to be.
Still, things can't become too grim when you're wearing a mech suit, and it's undeniably fun to zip around, jet-pack-jump, and blow the heck out of everything in sight. You don't play this game for beautiful graphics; everything in it looks fifteen years old. It goes to show though, that fun gameplay makes up for a lot of shortcomings. Despite being challenging at times, Metal Wolf Chaos XD makes you feel powerful, and it's fun defeating so many enemies single-handedly. Guns are easily upgraded, swapped, and wielded, and your ultimate ability (which can only be used once a level, generally) is truly awesome to see. Though there's blood, it doesn't go overboard or fixate on it which keeps the violence from getting too graphic. That said, in the context of today's headlines, parents might not want kids playing this game. At any rate, Metal Wolf Chaos XD could be fun for older kids and could give adults a means of starting a conversation about the effects of real-world violence.
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.