Pets vs Monsters

Common Sense Media says

Limited story, forced purchases hamper kid-friendly MMO.

Age(i)

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

Quality(i)

 

Learning(i)

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Players team up with pets to save the world from monsters. This gives them a sense of teamwork and collaboration with animals to defeat creatures invading their land.

Positive role models

In the college that serves as the game's central hub, there are professors and researchers who cheer players on to help characters around the world. 

Ease of play

The game is played with mouse clicks. A tutorial gives instructions on how to play the game and lots of tool tips abound. The world isn't open-ended, and paw prints lead to each objective. Monsters don't chase players far and numerous safe areas abound. Players can also activate a homing portal to return them to the central hub of the game when they've completed a quest.

Violence & scariness

Advancing requires the killing of monsters, but while there's animated swipes and effects of magic spells, there isn't any blood, death-cries, or gratuitous violence. Monsters simply fall over and vanish when defeated.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

The game is free to download and play, but kids are tempted to purchase in-game currency or a membership at every turn. Players will get loaned different pets on a trial basis, but will then be asked if they want to pay to keep the pet after a set amount of time.

Privacy & safety

An email account is required to access the game, so parents can limit kids under 13 to only using and seeing menu driven chat with canned phrases. Kids 13 and above can chat freely, but the game provides filters to keep out inappropriate words and phrases. There's also a blocking tool for players to ignore others.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Pets vs Monsters is an MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) where players team up with animal pets to fight monsters. The game can either be accessed through Facebook via browser or downloaded to your computer. It's free to play, but players are reminded often that paid membership will give them lots of game perks. There's a focus on fighting for characters to gain new levels and acquire new skills, but there's no blood and enemies vanish when they are defeated.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Hobbies

  • collecting
  • pets

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • decision-making
  • strategy

Self-Direction

  • achieving goals

Collaboration

  • cooperation
  • teamwork

Engagement, Approach, Support

Engagement

The characters and colorful graphics will be attractive to younger players. The game's simplicity plus a huge variety of pets to collect and train will keep fighting fans engaged.

Learning Approach

Players learn from trying out new features and characters. Each pet has different powers so making choices is critical in defeating certain monsters. Players also learn cooperation when they fight together against harder monsters or play team vs. team battles.

Support

A Wiki is available on the web and there are some videos uploaded on YouTube that players can use to help players select pets for certain battles. Otherwise, there is little information on the official website to be found.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Hobbies

  • collecting
  • pets

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • decision-making
  • strategy

Self-Direction

  • achieving goals

Collaboration

  • cooperation
  • teamwork

Players learn decision making and critical thinking through Pets Vs Monsters. They can collect a number of pets with different powers and have to select the right pet to be successful fighting monsters. With continued work and dedication, players learn that cooperation and teamwork will allow them to defeat harder monsters.

This Learning Rating review was written by Carolyn Koh

What's it about?

In PETS VS MONSTERS, players live in a world where monsters have invaded and are threatening villages. You're tasked with collecting and training pets to grow their power so you can fight against these creatures. Players are also sent out on quests to protect their settlements and deliver important equipment or medicines to outlying areas. Along the way, they get to use a variety of pets (some on a try-before-you-buy basis) to help them accomplish their tasks.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Pets vs Monsters is simple for players of all ages. The game's tone is appealing to younger players; they'll like riding wolves, bears, tigers, and fantastical birds into battle to save the world against monsters. There are endless environments, lots of monsters to fight, and lots of pets to collect. Players can challenge opponents to a duel; there are also battle games where players enter an arena and fight solo or in a team against others. Scoreboards are available in game so players can see how far they've gone in any challenge, the number of pets they've collected, and quests they've completed.

Players looking for things to do other than fight will be disappointed because the entire story is about fighting monsters in your town or fighting though monsters during quests. Over time, players will find the game gets harder because their selection of free pets is limited, forcing them to purchase pets to succeed. While it may be visually appealing for a younger group of players, the story limitations and obvious push for players to buy content holds Pets vs Monsters back.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about fantasy heroism and pets in games like Pets vs Monsters. Would it be cool to have a powerful and dangerous pet that could protect you and your family? Why do we have to train our pets?

  • Talk about internet privacy and safety. Why do we not want to use our real names or tell people where we live? 

  • Talk about consumerism and setting budgets. The game is free to play, but how would spending money make it better? How much money are we talking about?

Game details

Platforms:Facebook, Mac, Windows
Price:$0.00
Pricing structure:Free
Available online?Not available online
Developer:FunCom
Release date:July 1, 2013
Genre:Massively Multi-player Online Game (MMOG)
Topics:Magic and fantasy
ESRB rating:NR for The game has not been rated by the ESRB (Facebook, Mac, Windows)

This review of Pets vs Monsters was written by

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, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

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