A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Robo Recall is a downloadable sci-fi first-person shooter available for the Oculus Rift and Oculus Quest virtual reality hardware. Players take on the role of a corporate agent sent out to destroy swarms of defective robots running rampant through the city. The game focuses on tongue-in-cheek humor, never taking itself too seriously while the bullets are flying. There's a lot of destruction, with robots getting blown up and ripped apart into scrap. The edges of the screen occasionally show red “blood” to represent damage to the player. Otherwise, there's no inappropriate content in the game.
What's it about?
In the futuristic world of ROBO RECALL, robots are everywhere and a part of everyday life. You are an agent of the RoboReady corporation, the biggest manufacturer of these mechanical workers. Your job is to handle the "recall" of any defective units, using extreme measures when necessary. So when a nasty cyber-virus leads to a robot rebellion against humanity, it’s up to you to teach those rogue robots that their manufacturer’s warranty has just run its course. You'll teleport throughout the city blasting these wisecracking automatons into piles of nuts and bolts, and maybe discover the source of the virus in the process. But along the way, you should never forget to take a little extra pride in your job, executing these recalls in fun and creative ways. Run out of bullets in your current pistols? Toss them at an enemy to distract ‘em while you grab a couple more. Or maybe you feel like getting more hands-on, pulling a defective unit’s arm off before beating him down with it. The more creative you get, the higher your score. Survive the largest, most destructive, and downright insane product recall in history, and earn yourself that Employee of the Month bonus.
Is it any good?
If there’s one thing we’ve learned from science fiction movies, it’s that when robots rebel against their creators, it’s never good for humanity, but in this game, it can still be a heck of a lot of fun. Robo Recall is a bright and colorful world with a surprising amount of detail. When you step up close and grab hold of one of your robotic foes, you almost want to stop and admire the workmanship. At least until you remember that it’s trying to kill you and you rip it apart and knock its head off with its own leg. That’s the sort of goofy humor that permeates the game from start to finish. Even though the robots are programmed to kill you, that doesn’t stop them from firing off a quick one-liner before they’re dismantled. It’s the tongue-in-cheek humor and personality, along with its fast-paced gameplay, that keeps it from feeling boring or repetitious.
Robo Recall is probably best described as a wildly chaotic sci-fi shooting gallery like you’ve never seen before. After all, when’s the last time you shot a pistol until it was empty, then threw the empty gun in a bad guy’s face? Of course, you never really run out of bullets in the game, as a fresh set of guns is always holstered at your sides and ready to grab without the delay of reloading. It’s little things like this that keep the flow of the action going at a constant pace. It’s also fun to try and come up with ways to chain moves together for big combos, or to pull of seemingly impossible tricks like snatching enemy bullets out of the air and hurling them back at the attacker. The only awkward bits are the navigations, which is handled by pointing and teleporting to new locations. After a while though, even that becomes second nature, allowing you to hop quickly from ground level to rooftops and back to best fend off the frenzied robot swarms. Sure, you’d never actually able to pull off most of the things you do in Robo Recall, but the fact that you can just somehow feels right here. It’s a crazy sort of comic book-like world, and, thanks to VR, you get to live in it.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about violence in video games. Is the impact of the violence in Robo Recall affected by the fact that you're fighting robots instead of humans? Would the impact be intensified if you were fighting humans instead?
How does the full immersion of virtual reality change the gaming experience? How does it affect the impact of the game when you’re surrounded by it? What are some of the benefits and drawbacks to VR gaming?
- Platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift
- Price: $29.99
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online? Available online
- Developer: Oculus Studios
- Release date: March 1, 2017
- Genre: First-Person Shooter
- Topics: Adventures, Misfits and Underdogs, Robots, Science and Nature
- ESRB rating: T for Violence, Blood
- Last updated: June 19, 2019
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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.