A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
The game is a tad edgy with its language, sexual innuendo, and daredevil skating in public spaces. It also fails to show the long-term consequences and injuries that can result from dangerous skateboarding stunts. Avatars are up and riding mere seconds after suffering broken spines, and players are sometimes rewarded for staging particularly harsh bails. That said, much of the game has a positive, upbeat vibe. Players work to build up a skateboarding company from scratch and have fun with their friends while doing it.
Positive Role Models
Players are placed in the shoes of a mute, custom avatar with no real personality. All we know is that he or she is working to build a skateboard business. That said, the skaters featured in the game are generally good natured and quite likeable. Note, though, that they engage in some extremely dangerous stunts which players could conceivably attempt to mimic in the real world.
Ease of Play
This game is easier to pick up than past titles in the Skate franchise. Much of the focus is on the two analog sticks -- the right controls the board, the left controls the player, and the trigger buttons are used for grabs -- so it can be picked up fairly quickly.
Violence & Scariness
Skate 3 isn't a violent game by any stretch, but players can run into pedestrians in a virtual city, some of which might react by pushing you down or even tazing you if you bang into them hard enough. You can also hurt yourself in these games and be rewarded for it in a mode called Hall of Meat. This mode provides an x-ray shot of your skater, highlighting which bones have been broken.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Art used to deck out your equipment includes drawings of curvy women with large breasts and a close-up of buttocks in jeans. Billboards and posters also feature sexual innuendo, such as "Strip-A-Grams" and "Master Bait & Tackle."
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Some swear words can be heard in the game's career mode as you interact with A.I. characters. Words include "s--t," "p---y," ass," damn" and "hell." You can also hear jokes about urinating. One line of dialogue alludes to anal sex: "Stay away from my butt...this isn't prison."
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Products & Purchases
Players can outfit their boards or don apparel with real-life brands from skateboarding culture.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A small minority of skateboarders race and do tricks with cigarettes dangling from their mouths.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that while Skate 3 is rated "Teen" it's a lot tamer than many other similarly rated games, such as those that focus heavily on shooting people. This is a skateboarding sim with an arcade twist that folds in community features and cooperation. It puts players in the shoes of a young entrepreneur trying to start up a skateboarding company with the help of his or her friends. Note, though, that many of the stunts and tricks are very authentic, and could prompt players to try them in the real world. The long term repercussions of dangerous stunts are not accurately depicted, and players are rarely penalized for foolhardy behavior. In fact, one mode even rewards players for inflicting grave injuries on their avatars. Also be aware that there is a modest amount of foul language, and that the online mode offers open voice communication. Common Sense Media does not recommend open online play for children under 12 years of age.
Is It Any Good?
The new team-focused challenges and online features are well done, but those who purchased Skate 2 might want to first play this game at a friend's house (or rent it for a day) to see if the new additions justify the $60 purchase.
Back again is the fun Hall of Meat minigame that compensates you for brutal wipeouts, but many players will likely prefer the aforementioned team contests that pit your crew against another in multiple rounds of skateboarding challenges. What's more, a new park creator is included and makes it easier than ever to create the ultimate skate park from scratch. Plus, Skate 3 introduces an online social network called "skate.feed" that shows your friends' highlights reel (yes, you can still save your best moves) and allows you to share board graphics.
Online interaction: This online-focused game offers fun social networking-like features. That said, it provides players with access to completely open voice communications. We heard plenty of trash-talk in our headsets during online testing. There is also the potential for the sharing of personal information and inappropriate ideas. Common Sense Media does not recommend online play for children under the age of 12.
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.