Parents' Guide to


By David Wolinsky, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

Retro adventure homage, but tame violence, bland play.

Game Mac, Windows 2016
Owlboy Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say Not yet rated
Kids say (2):

This retro-designed action title has a lot of classic gameplay charm, but it doesn't offer much to players besides nostalgia. What's here is fun and charming enough, but Owlboy ultimately falls short, as its various parts don't play well together. For example, although you have the freedom to fly anywhere you'd like, the game still puts ever-narrowing corridors and walled-off corners of the sky in front of you. Obviously, true freedom in any video game would be daunting and boring, but Owlboy is content to confine you to dungeons that avoid the main gameplay feature that stands out from other titles. That feature is that monsters can be vanquished through clever gripping and squeezing of clouds to produce rain just as effectively as the brute force of gunfire.

Still, it's a game worth playing with measured expectations. It can't be understated how much charm the game exudes, whether it's the impressively detailed pixel art and regal soundtrack or its quaint dialogue, which feels like it's been ripped from a classic Japanese to English translation. If you've played other games like this before, you'll find plenty to be comforted by and familiar with here, but it's too short, doesn't innovate, and can't seem to make up its mind about what sort of game it wants to be. You'll fly around, but not much. You can shoot but don't have to. Either way, it's up to you.

Game Details

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