Styx: Master of Shadows

Game review by
Michael Lafferty, Common Sense Media
Styx: Master of Shadows Game Poster Image
Bloody stealth game with heartless hero hit or miss.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 2 reviews

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Do whatever it takes to accomplish goals -- including using stealth, killing from the shadows, and stealing. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Styx will do anything to steal the heart of the World Tree, including killing.

Ease of Play

Controls are easy, but combat is challenging and leads to frequent, frustrating restarts.


Throats are slit, characters are poisoned, there are stealth kills from above and from the shadows, blood splatters, and bodies litter the ground.


"F--k," "s--t," and other strong dialogue.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Styx: Master of Shadows is a downloadable stealth adventure game. The main character is a thieving goblin who's only interested in stealing the heart of the World Tree, and he'll kill anyone in his way. There's lots of strong language ("f--k" and "s--t") and splattering blood and gore. Players can take the stealth route, assassinating guards from the shadows.  This includes poisoning enemies, slitting throats, and silently eliminating opponents by leaping onto unsuspecting victims and plunging daggers into their backs. Direct clashes will result in lots of gushing wounds and splayed bodies.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 8-year-old Written byAdam N. February 12, 2018
Adult Written byGamermumnz April 24, 2016

Styx is so fun!

I play this game with my seven year old girl, She loves monsters and creepy stuff and we have so much fun playing it together. Yes there is swearing but we hear... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byGamersnews32 April 30, 2019

"Okay" game, with awful combat.

Styx: Master of Shadows is a Fantasy, stealth-action adventure game. The level design of the game is great. Instead of continuous linear segments, levels are op... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byjehad February 23, 2016

little blood and some some bad words

i won't play it myself but it might be suitable for other kids

What's it about?

STYX: MASTER OF SHADOWS is a prequel to 2012's Of Orcs and Men; it tells the story of Styx, the first goblin, who's a master thief and assassin. In the Tower of Akenash is the World Tree, the source of a power that can impart wealth and power. Styx, who isn't certain of his origins, is drawn by voices to steal the heart of the tree. He finds allies in humans who dislike the elves guarding the tree, but he's loyal only to himself and not above playing one side against the other.

Is it any good?

Styx: Master of Shadows can be hit or miss. The stealth elements are excellent, and the game looks amazing, even if it's a bit on the dark side. Combat graphics and stealth movement are handled well, but Styx falls short because actual combat controls feel stiff and cumbersome. Fights require precise timing to deflect and then counterattack enemies; fail, and you restart the mission. Fortunately, there's more than one way to negotiate a level, so you can avoid fighting.

The language can be profane, but the voice acting is very well done. Also, the game relies on tried-and-true platform-type actions, such as climbing walls and leaping from one outcropping to another, which may be familiar to gamers but could also become repetitive. You may be prompted to hide behind barrels only to find out that these provide inadequate cover and you're suddenly the center of attention for several well-aimed blades. Even so, Styx: Master of Shadows is a bit surprising and worth checking out -- especially for those RPG lovers who like the challenge of a stealth-based game. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about whether the violence in stealth games like Styx: Master of Shadows is gratuitous. Stealth games focus on sneaking around, but when combat occurs, it's usually brutal. Should games like these include graphic combat, or should players be forced to restart when they get detected?

  • Discuss the concept of alliances. What's the advantage of teaming up with others to accomplish your goals? What are the disadvantages?

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love RPGs

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

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.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate