A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that MX vs. ATV Alive is a professional motocross simulation set mostly on outdoor championship tracks. Note, though, that this game might be more violent than past games as it now supports "bar to bar" full-contact action, meaning players can shove nearby riders. Also, players will see scantily-clad "card girls" and hear mild language in a couple of songs. Parents should be aware that this game supports open online play, a feature that Common Sense Media doesn't recommend for pre-teens.
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What's it about?
MX VS. ATV ALIVE – the fifth iteration of THQ's popular off-road racing franchise – challenges players to climb onto all-terrain vehicles and motocross bikes once again. The sport of competitive racing is delivered via a realistic physics engine, real-time track deformation that continuously changes the ground beneath you as bike wheels shift dirt, and authentic events based on actual races and championship courses. Fans of the sport will appreciate the game's real-world tracks, riders, and competitions. As the title suggests, you can also race ATVs along with motorbikes, and perform high-flying stunts, too. Parents should note that this game is the first of THQ's \"hybrid\" games; discounted titles ($40 instead of $60) that rely on the sales of downloadable content (DLC) for digital upgrades.
Is it any good?
MX vs ATV Alive makes for a great time, especially if you're a fan of the series or like playing off-road racing games. Based on user feedback, the developers enhanced the control of both the riders and vehicles, and it shows. Controls are tighter and more responsive. Plus, the addition of the "bar-to-bar" system makes it possible (and fun) to trade bumps, pushes, and shoves with fellow riders as you race through championship courses, jungles, deserts, and mountains, vying for the finish line.
Two-time AMA Supercross Champion James "Bubba" Stewart graces the cover of MX vs ATV: Alive, plus his personal motocross compound has been recreated and offered as free digital download to those who buy the game. With its myriad of modes, smooth animation, and tight controls, MX vs. ATV Alive is a fun and relatively affordable racing game for high-def consoles.
Online interaction: This game allows players to play against others online, download new content, and chat with others via headset. Open voice communication with strangers means players may be exposed to inappropriate language and topics of conversation. Also, potential exists for players to share personal information.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about "subsidized" pricing. This game is $40 instead of $60, but downloadable content packs will come at a price of a few dollars each. Does this seem like good entertainment value to you?
Families can also discuss how racing games might affect real life driving habits. If so, should parents be as worried about a simulation of a professional racing sport as they might be about street racing games?
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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.