A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Sniper Elite 4 is a violent and bloody shooter. Using stealth, strategy, and a variety of weapons, players have to assassinate targets while killing other people who get in their way. Some kills are shown in slow-motion detail, with X-ray images of the bullet, knife, or exploded shrapnel going into an enemy's body, highlighting the damage it does to bones and internal organs. And yes, that can include a soldier's testicles. On the flip side, you're fighting Nazis in World War II. One character mentions he'd like a beer, while others occasionally use such curses as "dammit," "hell," and "son of a bitch." Online communication among players in the game's co-op and competitive multiplayer modes isn't moderated.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
In SNIPER ELITE 4, you have to stop the Nazis from building and deploying a new, secret weapon that could turn the tide of World War II while also helping the Italian resistance deal with the fascists -- which means you have to go sneaking around a small Italian island, an intricate seaside village, a shipyard, and some nice wooded areas, all so you can kill Nazis and steal relevant intel ... which will tell you where in Italy you need to visit next and whom to kill when you get there.
Is it any good?
By adding open battlefields to the already solid stealth action of this series, this World War II shooter is like playing a tense but engaging game of cat and mouse. Set in 1943, Sniper Elite 4 sends you to Italy, where you have to prevent the Nazis from deploying a secret new weapon while working with local resistance fighters to undermine the fascists. Good thing you know how to be sneaky and patient and how to hit a target from a hundred yards with a sniper rifle. But this third-person shooter isn't only about shooting German soldiers from far away. You also have to locate your targets and steal their intel when they're done, and that requires getting a little closer. Good thing you also own a pistol and a machine gun. Just be careful, since the battlefields in this sequel are more open and varied, which means you can come at your objectives from multiple angles -- and your enemies can do the same.
But while this game's story-driven campaign is exhilarating and engaging, some of this shooter's competitive and cooperative online modes, including "Team Deathmatch" and "Survival," offer nothing new. Others, however, smartly take advantage of this game's unique mechanics, such as "Team Distance King," in which the winners are the ones who collectively take the longest shots in dispatching their enemies. But it's the campaign that is this game's centerpiece, and it's here -- when you shoot a bullet between some trees and into the gas tank of a truck from 200 yards, causing it to explode and take out a group of soldiers -- that Sniper Elite 4 really makes you feel like you've earned that title: "elite."
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about violence in video games. Does it make a difference to you that the violence in this game is against other people (rather than zombies or fantasy characters)? Does it matter that those people are Nazis and German soldiers in World War II?
Talk about being careful. A big part of this game involves being quiet and sneaky, but how can this be employed in your life?
Discuss World War II. What happened during World War II that makes it such a historic event? Do you know what a "concentration camp" is?
- Platforms: PlayStation 4, Windows, Xbox One
- Price: $59.99
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online? Available online
- Developer: Rebellion Developments
- Release date: February 13, 2017
- Genre: Third-Person Shooter
- Topics: Adventures, History, Misfits and Underdogs
- ESRB rating: M for Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Language
- Last updated: March 19, 2020
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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.