Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
ScreamRide Game Poster Image
Roller coaster sim has thrills; controls full of bumps.

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Educational Value

Kids can learn engineering, architecture, design, physics, and the inner workings of theme parks with the personally created roller coasters of ScreamRide. It encourages kids to design, build, and test-drive their own roller coaster creations before sharing them with friends or letting them create havoc in the single-player mode. Controls aren't always the sharpest with the game, and it can take a lot of figuring out how to best create structures that will withstand the rigors of constant use. There's also a destructive element, wherein kids are encouraged to demolish buildings, but this is more for player enjoyment than the promotion of harmful actions. ScreamRide is one of the better video games for learning and sharpening digital skills while having fun.

Positive Messages

Payers can get creative with their designs, but things can go wrong, roller coasters can break, and people can get hurt, virtually.

Positive Role Models & Representations

No role models, since your main focus is creating roller coasters and getting park-goers to test your creations for you.

Ease of Play

Bit of a learning curve: Players must use the Xbox controller to create the roller coaster, something a mouse and keyboard would be better for. Some in-game help, if needed.


Although cartoon-like in nature, some mild animated violence. Riders might get ejected from their seats, flung into the air. The cart can break off from the coaster and smash into a building. You can ignite bombs to blow up buildings (which causes screaming human characters to run away from the wreckage).

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that ScreamRide is a roller coaster-building game that challenges players to design, build, and test their creations. Although it sounds like a game of construction rather than destruction, there's quite a bit of the latter, too. Things can go wrong and people can get hurt (or worse) after being ejected or a cart goes off the rails. There's also a demolition mode where you can fling people in pods toward buildings in the hopes of creating massive property damage to earn points. Players also should be aware that they'll have to create and manipulate coaster tracks with the Xbox controller, a task a bit better suited to mouse and keyboard.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 10 and 10-year-old Written bymaddox121 July 3, 2015


Violence-mild sex-none language-just screaming Gamble-none Drugs-none its OKAY
Teen, 13 years old Written byWicked Cyclone March 15, 2018
You can build your own roller coasters and rides and test them out with people riding. Building your own amusement park is fun and I think that ScreamRide is a... Continue reading

What's it about?

Microsoft Studios' SCREAMRIDE fuses action and simulation ("sim") in a unique offering. At its core, your goal is to design, build, and ride roller coasters in a near-future amusement park of sorts (which you also can design). But, unlike in the hit series Rollercoaster Tycoon -- where it's very bad if your coaster breaks down -- your riders seem to enjoy when this happens in ScreamRide. In fact, destruction is as important as construction in this game, depending on which mode you play: engineering, racing, demolition, and sandbox creation (only unlocked for partaking in career events). In other words, you must use your imagination to create ridiculously tall winding coasters and see what happens when you strap some people in and crank the speed up to 170 miles per hour, or launch them off a huge and rotating arm into skyscrapers. Because of this, ScreamRide might not appeal to the same audience as Rollercoaster Tycoon, since it focuses more on reckless action and demolishing things than slowly and painstakingly designing a successful roller coaster without any hitches. 

Is it any good?

Gamers won't want to pass on this over-the-top action sim with equal construction and destruction. Despite seeing human limbs flailing in the air as a roller coaster cart breaks off from a loop-the-loop, its content also is great for young tweens because it's fun to build and to destroy (and to ride your creations, too). Four unique modes and side challenges add to the replayability. But it's the demolition mode that likely will keep you coming back: Using real physics, you're aiming to launch a cart off a rotating arm and into various structures in the hopes of causing mass carnage -- and being awarded points for it (hint: Aim for the explosive barrels).

Though unique and fun, ScreamRide suffers from some confusing controls (in part due to a console controller's limitations compared to a mouse and keyboard) as well as occasional but ill-timed frame-rate hiccups (not great in a game about roller coasters). And don't expect the same toolset depth for building dream coasters as you'd find in Rollercoaster Tycoon. So long as you understand it's a different experience altogether, you'll be fine. Even better, you'll enjoy the ride.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how ScreamRide offers both construction and destruction opportunities with play. Do the learning opportunities and action-packed demolishing of buildings satisfy both kids and parents?

  • Talk about thrill rides. What is it about thrill rides that appeal to people? Why are people terrified of these kinds of rides?

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love simulations

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

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