A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this kart racing game is one of several games released by Electronic Arts over the last couple years under the MySims license, a brand related to the more mature Sims games but with content suitable for children. Save a few standard kart racing shenanigans, there's nothing here that's inappropriate for children. Your best guide as to whether the game is suitable for your kids will be knowing their reading level (all instructions are delivered in text format) and how easily they grow frustrated with imperfect controls (it takes a while to earn the upgrades required to make the game's cars handle well).
What's it about?
The latest entry in Electronic Arts' MySims franchise -- a series of games with features vaguely resembling those of the Sims games (including avatar customization and freedom of exploration) but geared for children -- MYSIMS RACING is a fairly standard kart racing game. Players strap on the goggles of a rookie race car driver who just arrived in Speedville, a town once renowned for its beautiful race tracks but which has fallen into disrepair since the disappearance of its benefactor ten years ago. Your goal is to keep the town from being turned into a landfill by helping its citizens with a variety of tasks that take the form of races, including time trials, item collection challenges, and even full-fledged championship competitions.
Is it any good?
MySims Racing may not have tracks or vehicles that are as pretty or imaginative as those found in Nintendo's lauded Mario Kart games. And its motion-sensitive controls, which are cumbersome at first but become more manageable as your cars are upgraded, could frustrate impatient players. But, MySims Racing is still one of the better kiddy racers to come along in some time.
A wealth of customization options earned by winning races will keep players tinkering with their rides for hours. Plus, there are plenty of fun and clever little power-ups never before seen in a kart racer, such as a twister that can spin the screen upside down and throw players for a loop, and an acorn players can toss into the road that will sprout into a giant tree directly in the path of other racers. It's definitely worth a look for boys and girls who get a kick out of kart racing.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the MySims brand. Do you think these games share enough in common with the more mature Sims games to warrant their bearing a similar name? What about them makes them Sims-like? How are Electronic Arts’ interests served by drawing a connection between MySims games and Sims games?
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