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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
You're following a distress signal sent by a friend in space, and you're trying to stop the dangerous and destructive "Red Matter" material -- both of which are noble tasks.
Positive Role Models
The fictitious game tells of two types of people: the Atlantic Union (the "West," if you will) and the People's Republic of Volgravia (a massive red national in the "East," implying Russia). You play as a Volgravian agent named Sasha Riss, but you never see your character as it's played from a first-person view in VR. Little is known about the player. You see humans in this game, including another Volgravian agent you can chat with over a comms systems, referred to as "Beta." You interact with mostly robots in this game, and some humanoid characters, too.
Your character, Sasha, whom you never see, is never used with pronouns, so it's unknown if it's a male or female. There aren't many other characters in this game, but when you do, they're all Caucasian. Therefore, there's very little racial diversity. When combat kicks in about halfway through the game, it's mostly against robots and droids.
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Ease of Play
Red Matter 2 is quite easy to pick up for a VR game, especially as the controls are well mapped to the Oculus Quest 2 controllers. Plus, there's a tutorial to play earlier and some settings to make the game easier to play. There's a sit-down mode, too.
Violence & Scariness
There's some violence since you can shoot enemies, but they're mostly robots, flying drones, and turrets. There's no blood or gore, but there are some scary elements, including walking around an abandoned spaceship, although there are no "jump scares" or anything to that effect.
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There's some profanity, including "s--t," as well as "hell" and "damn" heard in the dialog sequences.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Red Matter 2 is a puzzle-based adventure game for the Meta Quest and Meta Rift. The title has some action elements, and it's played in virtual reality. The sci-fi story has some shooting, but it's mostly against robots, drones, and turrets. There are some human enemies as well, but no blood or gore is shown when they are defeated. This sci-fi tale has some profanity, too, including "s--t" heard in the dialog.
Is It Any Good?
If you enjoy slower-paced sci-fi stories -- and one with a Dystopian Cold War vibe to it -- this game will no doubt please you. Red Matter 2 isn't perfect, and it helps if you've played the first game to get the most out of this sequel, but it's a stellar (and great-looking) offering for those looking for a fun weekend getaway in space. At its core, this is an adventure game, which is where it shines best, with several puzzles to solve from a first-person perspective. Sure, there's a bit of repetition in the puzzles, like flipping circuits in a control panel or cracking a vault's code, but it's still gratifying, and fun to manipulate these items with your hands and claw contraption from your first-person view.
Like many "point-and-click" adventure games, you'll also scour a room for clues, like scraps of paper, and looking for other items littered about. You'll also find yourself jump from one platform to another with your jetpack, and at about the halfway mark, shooting back against those looking to kill you (mostly flying drones, robots and turrets). It can be tricky to aim and shoot, while also moving to evade enemy fire, so the combat portions aren't as enjoyable. Red Matter 2 is also a great looking game, and you'll often find yourself stopping in your tracks to take in the huge set pieces. Since it's VR, you can move your head around to see some beautifully-crafted scenes, such soaking up an awe-inspiring view of a planet's surface. (it may be one of the best-looking games for the Meta Quest VR platform.) Movement might be a little nauseating for some, but it's great the game gives you different options, such as transporting to different areas, a seated mode, and more. Overall, Red Matter 2 is a fun story that takes advantage of VR technology -- and without it feeling gimmicky. At its heart, it's a good story, complimented by great graphics and competent voice acting and music, and some decent puzzle-solving moments you won't soon forget.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.