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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this bloody, mature game is over-the-top in both story line and imagery. Based on a graphic novel, it features extreme gore and violence (you can gun people down in cold blood) and strong language (including "f--k" and "s--t"). As you play, your character will morph into a demon-like beast that sprouts tentacle-like appendages to gouge baddies.
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What's it about?
THE DARKNESS begins with a bang: You play as Mafia hit man Jackie Estacado, who wakes up on his 21st birthday in the back seat of a speeding convertible after being knocked out during a money deal gone wrong. Eventually you discover that the head of the crime family you work for, \"Uncle\" Paulie Franchetti, has put a hit on you. Even more disturbing, though, is a demonic voice that starts speaking in your head -- until you learn how to harness the \"darkness\" and use the ancient power to exact revenge on Paulie and his henchmen. In fact, you'll transform into somewhat of a demon yourself, with serpent-like appendages growing out of your shoulders, glowing eyes, and an aversion to light.
Is it any good?
As you might suspect, this extraordinary action game is as gory as it is striking. While over-the-top (in true comic book fashion), the story, penned by Eisner Award winner Paul Jenkins, is well written and exceptionally voice-acted by the talented cast. Finding more than 100 hidden items in the game will unlock bonus goodies (accessible from the main menu), including comic books, concept artwork, and more. Along with the lengthy single-player game, The Darkness offers seven unique multiplayer modes for both the Xbox 360 and PS3.
Mature gamers in search of a worthy shooter will find The Darkness one of the finest games of the year thus far. The action is intense, the story and characters are memorable, it looks and sounds great, and there's a ton of solo and head-to-head game play to sink your fangs into.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what makes this game appealing. Does the fact that the main character is possessed by an evil force make him (or you, as the player) less responsible for his actions? Is that good or bad? Do the violent acts seem less violent when they're committed by tentacles instead of guns? Did this game make you feel like you were part of a dark comic-book world? What drew you in -- the shooting or the story?
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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.