R.U.S.E.

 
Deep war game requires brain as well as (moderate) brawn.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Combat is the name of the game here. The emphasis is on strategy rather than bloody battles, but a lot of firepower rests at players' fingertips. Some foul language and scenes that depict cigarette smoking might also send a negative message to children.

Positive role models

The story follows an American soldier named Joe Sherida, but rather than focus solely on his narrow perspective, the game makes the player feel like the commander of a large army tasked with taking down enemy factions in European cities. As the subtitle of the game suggests (The Art of Deception), you're encouraged to trick your opponents to gain a foothold in this war.

Ease of play

The PC version of the game was fairly easy to master, thanks in part to a tutorial at the beginning of the game. The mouse-based actions were simple to pick up.,All three versions of the game are the same but the PS3 version supports the Move controller and the PC version supports multi-touch displays. All versions of the game have three difficulty settings.

Violence

R.U.S.E. is a military-based strategy game, where the player is in command of infantry, ground, and air vehicles. The goal is to defeat the enemy, but there is no blood or gore. Most of the action is seen from a top-down "eagle eye" view, but players can zoom in for a closer look.

Sex
Not applicable
Language

Non-interactive cut-scene movies and dialogue sequences include some profanity, including words such as "ass," "goddamn," and "bastard," but nothing stronger than that.

 

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

In one of the cut-scene movies, some of the characters (soldiers) can be seen lighting and smoking cigarettes.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that R.U.S.E. is a WWII combat game, but that it is not as intense as more graphic and realistic modern-day military shooters, such as games in the popular Call of Duty franchise. Players can command an army to destroy enemy units and buildings -- mostly from a top-down "eagle eye" view of the action. There is some mild profanity and support for open online communication. Parents may also be interested to know that one of the game's primary tactics, both in the campaign and against human opponents, is strategic deceit.

What's it about?

Spearheaded by this summer's StarCraft II from Blizzard Entertainment, which sold more than 3 million copies its first month, real-time strategy (RTS) games might be poised for a comeback. You may be more inclined to agree after booting up Ubisoft's R.U.S.E., an ambitious but successful war game available for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. Along with some mechanics fans of the genre will find familiar -- such as dragging and dropping units on a map and researching new technologies -- the game introduces techniques such as undercover spies, troop camouflage, decoy units, data encryption, radio silence, and so on.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

R.U.S.E. is very good. In addition to several solo campaigns in which players must utilize both conventional RTS gameplay elements and R.U.S.E.'s unique "deception" strategies, there are also head-to-head and co-op modes, in which one's enemies are less predictable and potentially more challenging than the game's artificial intelligence.

The pace is slower than many other RTS titles, but players should enjoy the WWII backdrop and the cutting-edge graphics that let you zoom in from a bird's eye view right down to the level of individual soldiers on the front lines. R.U.S.E. is a great pick for those looking for a deeper war game that requires some brains as well as brawn.

 

Online interaction: The game offers multiplayer support for all three versions of the game. Players can meet in a central lobby and then launch a game (up to four players in total). It's possible to voice chat in all versions of the game. Common Sense Media does not recommend moderation-free online communication for pre-teens. We suggest using the parental controls built into game consoles to disable online communication features.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether a war game can be educational by teaching players strategy, resource management, and psychology. Can a game like this actually sharpen one's brain? Is it more beneficial than, say, vegging out in front of the television? Or do games like this simply trivialize violence and desensitize players to its horrors?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Windows
Price:$59.99 ($49.99 for PC)
Available online?Available online
Developer:UbiSoft
Release date:September 7, 2010
Genre:Strategy
ESRB rating:T for Mild Language, Mild Violence, Use of Tobacco (PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360)

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

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Teen, 13 years old Written bymrgeckoking February 27, 2012
age 12+
 

No worse than risk but is very comlpicated and complex.

There is no blood, because you can only see from the sky. It's super fun but is really complex. I can hardly beat the 6th mission. so dont expect youre 9 year old to love it.
Parent of a 11 year old Written byESPN October 11, 2012
age 2+
 
LEARNING

RUSE good for 2 yr olds!!

RUSE is a very addictive, good game and it should be rated 2+
What other families should know
Great role models
Teen, 13 years old Written bynsvv April 30, 2011
age 13+
 
RUSE is a very interesting example of a game as although it deals with violent themes and the second world war, it is not simply mindless violence as many other games are. RUSE is a strategic game where you play the role of a general with the aim of defeating your enemy. To do this, you must strategically command your troops and use 'RUSEs' (benefits that allow you to trick your enemy) to lead your side to victory. There is no graphical violence in RUSE, but it does still deal with intentions of killing, so is not suitable for children. There is some very mild language, but nothing that a teenager wouldn't hear at school. Due to its themes and difficulty, RUSE is inappropriate for children under the age of 13, but anybody over that age should be mature enough to deal with it. I'd almost go to the length of saying this game has a positive influence as it really forces the player to think to achieve, as opposed to running around mindlessly trying to kill as many people as possible.
What other families should know
Educational value
Safety and privacy concerns

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