A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Kids can learn about collaborating and communicating with others as they contribute to a team while exploring the sci-fi world of Star Wars: The Old Republic. This massively multiplayer online game requires kids to use reasoning to accomplish the quest-driven goals. There is a moral element to the game, where kids' decisions lead to consequences and ultimately determine whether players go to the "light" or "dark" side. Players can also create items by crafting and learn about buying and selling for profit. The Old Republic lays out quests and locations for you, which hinders your ability to feel empowered.
Morality determined by player;. Jedi pride themselves on peace, honor, and justice; Sith are devious, backstabbing, vengeful.
Positive Role Models
If you play as a Sith, you'll show no mercy and kill without hesitation or risk developing a reputation for being too nice. The Jedis kill just as much, but they're not left with much choice and express regret.
Ease of Play
Small learning curve; controls relatively intuitive.
Violence & Scariness
Game revolves around combat, with hostile worlds attacking without provocation. Most violent acts not seen directly -- no dismemberment or blood, and bodies disappear quickly. Look of horror in the death masks of slain humanoids. Players use lightsabers, guns, explosive devices, shock waves, lightning. One Sith quest requires dipping a skull in a pool of blood to spawn a quest boss monster. Space battles involve shooting missiles and lasers at other ships that, when damaged enough, will explode. When players are defeated in battle, their equipment takes damage (and will deteriorate over time anyway), but players will fall lifeless on the battlefield and can summon a medical ship to revive them.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Scantily clad dancers show cleavage. Characters can "club dance," which involves suggestive gyrations.
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"Damn" and "hell" in cut scenes. Comments about sex. Dialogue can be racy and flirty. Text chat has option to prohibit players from typing in strong language.
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Products & Purchases
After purchase, this game requires a monthly $14.99 fee. "Star Wars" appears on transition screens. The game is based on a very popular license.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Cantinas everywhere. Characters drink in cut scenes.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Star Wars: The Old Republic is a massively multiplayer online game (MMO) that, after purchase, requires a $14.95 monthly subscription fee. Players become classic characters from the Star Wars movies and not only quest and kill nonplayable characters and monsters but also indulge in player-vs.-player combat that uses weapons and magic, but no blood is shown. However, blood can be seen in a few other scenes. Players can choose to be a good and noble Jedi or play as a Sith, which being arrogant, bullying, and cruel. In addition to questing, players can indulge in space combat and player-vs.-player war zones. Text chat between players can be uncensored.
Is It Any Good?
Star Wars: The Old Republic has bucked the story-doesn't-matter trend of MMOs by creating a game where the story matters a lot. This is one of the best, if not the best, story-driven MMO on the market. The graphics are glorious, and the game bolsters its appeal with the lore and legend of the Star Wars license. Though the space combat is not very good and is more arcade than anything else, the rest of the experience is well done; the crafting is intelligent, the player-vs.-player battlefields are balanced for all player levels, and there's a lot to see and do. All in all, this is great fun.
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.