Monkey Quest

Common Sense Media says

You're the hero in exciting Mario-type platformer MMO.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Like many games targeted at children, quests are all about helping others and defeating evil.

Positive role models

Elder monkeys and figures of authority are the good guys, and exhort young monkeys to aid others and do good.

Ease of play

Surprisingly, the game doesn't have a formal tutorial that shows kids how to navigate through the game, but rather provides hints along the way. Once kids figure out it's a platformer and that they should use the standard "arrow keys to move and spacebar to jump" scheme of most platformers, tooltips appear throughout the game showing kids what else to do.

Violence & scariness

There's some cartoon violence as monkeys can be hit by creatures shooting magical sparks at them and they can shoot colorful projectiles with weapons such as catapults, slingshots, and banana guns. Creatures can screech, but they then just disappear.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

The cash shop is easily accessible in the game and many areas in the game are closed unless players purchase them or subscribe to the game. However, you can play the game without spending any real cash or subscribing -- it's just a less robust experience.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Monkey Quest is a massively multiplayer online role playing game (MMORG) in which kids create and customize a monkey avatar to go on adventures in a fantasy world. This is a side-scrolling platform puzzler with some mild combat. The violence is cartoony and on par with what kids would see in a Mario game. This game is played through a browser but requires the Unity plug-in, and parents will have to allow pop-ups from the site as the game launches in a pop-up window. The game also requires a moderate to high-end computer and fast Internet connection (minimum computer specs called for include an ATI Radeon 9600 or NVidia FX 5700 or better video card and broadband connection). Parents also need to know that although quite a bit of the game may be played for free, there's a substantial amount of the game to be unlocked by a monthly subscription or through buying NickCash to open the areas up for play.

Parents say

Kids say

What's it about?

Ook, the world of MONKEY QUEST, is a wild and exciting land. Long ago, the Monkey King had defeated the Shadow Demon, Ka, and then disappeared, leaving five ruling monkey tribes to run Ook. Now, evil Shadow Monsters are once again threatening this world and the monkey tribes. You, young monkey, with your friends (other players in this online game) have agreed to go on quests to discover the secrets of the evil and join the fight against it. Players become stronger the longer they play, and the world they are exploring expands.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Monkey Quest is a graphically pleasing and well-designed MMO with a theme that appeals to kids, with platforming action that also makes use of foreground and background space to create more "platforms" onto which to jump. Most kids who have played console games will be familiar with this game action, which makes use of arrow keys to move, the spacebar to jump, and combinations thereof for special powers. Besides questing, players will find there's also simple crafting in the game and as players advance, they will unlock better weapons and abilities. Kids will also find that playing together with friends (it's simple to make friends in this world) provides a "banana" multiplier, increasing the number of bananas -- the in-game currency -- that they earn. There are also special quests where kids need to join up as a "team" so that they can take on quests that can only be done with two to four kids playing together. 

The game is fun and appealing to kids, but only for kids playing on high-end computers. Unfortunately its rather high computing requirements mean that kids with older computers and slower internet connections will find the game less fun with long load times between scenarios and graphic glitches. For kids with fast enough computers, this a delightful romp -- on par with the fun found in Toontown Online.

Online interaction: The chat function is white list chat where a dictionary is employed. Which is to say, kids can only use words that are in that dictionary. Any attempt at bad words are blocked. There is 24/7 monitoring and a function available for reporting abuse.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about fighting and violence in games. Is shooting bananas any less violent than shooting laser beams? How is cartoony violence different from realistic violence?

  • Families can also talk about money matters. How do you earn the in-game currency? What can you buy with it? Is it necessary?

Game details

Platforms:Windows, Mac
Price:Free / $9.95 a month subscription / micro-transaction
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Nickelodeon
Release date:April 5, 2011
Genre:Massively Multi-player Online Game (MMOG)
ESRB rating:E for Mild Cartoon Violence (Mac, Windows)

This review of Monkey Quest was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 10 years old September 11, 2011
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

Kisharoo's Review on Monkey Quest.

Dear Families, Monkey Quest is a fun, virtual world - a MMORPG {{for parents - Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game - I think}}. It's special and wonderful because, well, how many monkey games do you see now-a-days? Not that many, if you ask me. It's extremely cute, and wonderful for your younger children. The graphics are beautiful and unique, and the monkeys are each different. None can be exactly the same! Your child will never see a monkey with their name - it's completely theirs, and after they use it, they own it, and no one can use it. Over the time it has been open, Monkey Quest has become very popular. This does cause "lagging", or a very slow computer. I recommend to make sure that Monkey Quest is the only tab open - the only thing open when you play. That helps. I promise you, that your child will love this game. His or her face will light up, and this game will keep them distracted for at least an hour. If you need to cook dinner in peace, or if you want to look at television alone, this is the best thing to do it. It's appropriate, fun, and down-right addicting! Remember, tell your child what to do and what not to do online. Know your child. What games does s/he like to play? What is s/he scared of? Is s/he emotional? Although this game has slight violence, there is no blood or gore. The internet will always be iffy, but if you tell your child what to play and what not to play, if you tell your child to tell you everything about their online life, it will be fine. Keep your child safe, and make sure they ask before going on any websites that you don't trust. These tips will keep you happy, and your child safe. Have fun monkeying around! Sincerely, Kishy
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 13 years old Written byamjenkins July 31, 2011
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

Fun and Really Safe

I love this game and I'm sure that other kids, big or small will too. It's very basic, although you might need to help your kid once in a while with a puzzle or something. The chat is completely safe, and they won't let you use any bad words at all. I love this game and it was worth the download. Enjoy!
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 6 year old Written byadainman April 22, 2011
AGE
7
QUALITY
 

Not just great for kids, but great for parents, too!

I'm a gamer dad that's always looking for great games to play with my 7-year-old. Every tiime I log on to Monkey Quest he lights up and we spend a good half hour jumping, swinging, and battling our way through a few quests. I like it because it reminds me of my favorite platformers. He likes it because it's funny and he gets to blast monsters. And yes, we did opt for the membership.
What other families should know
Great role models

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