A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
While your missions include stopping pirates and other bad guys, you're also on a mission of revenge, and use violence to solve your problems.
Positive Role Models
You're not only driven to save people and The Empire, but also by revenge. To do this, you use violent means and show no mercy to your enemies.
Ease of Play
The controls will be somewhat familiar to players of similar adventure games, and the training exercises at the beginning will bring newcomers up to speed. The game has three difficulty options: easy, normal, and hardcore.
Violence & Scariness
Players use guns to shoot down other pilots and to destroy ground-based targets. But while you're on the back of a bird, your mount never uses their beak or claws to attack. Your bird will spill some blood when hit by enemy projectiles.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Falconeer is a downloadable aerial combat game for the Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and Windows PCs. In it, you use guns to attack enemies and ground targets, and your bird bleeds when hit by enemy attacks. But unlike real birds when they fight, yours doesn't use its beak or claws, and thus doesn't rip or tear enemies in bloody and gory ways. Controls should be familiar to gamers used to other aerial combat games, btherwise, there's no objectionable content in the gameplay.
Is It Any Good?
While aerial combat games can provide seat-of-your-pants action when done well, this one isn't nearly so exciting. In The Falconeer, you pilot a giant bird into battle against other warbirds, as well as ground-based targets, all in the hopes of restoring the Empire to its former glory. Flying around an open world -- which is largely water but with a small smattering of islands -- you engage in mid-fight fights, shooting at other giant birds and aircraft. You can even pick up mines and drop them on targets, though this requires a subtlety that your bird doesn't always have. It's still pretty nimble, even if you do need to juice it up by picking up speed to do barrel rolls.
While there's fun to be had when you're going mano-a-mano -- or should that be birdo-a-birdo -- those moments are not a frequent or as frantic as they could've been. They're often preceded by long stretches of flying. That's also assuming you went the right way. Not only is your bird easily distracted, and will often veer off course, but unlike most aerial combat games, this one has a static navigation map, and can't be changed to reflect your new objectives when you turn. Though even when you do finally arrive at a fight, you never feel like you or your bird is in any real danger. Warbirds never use their claws or beak to scratch or peck each other, and the bad guys sometimes just give up and fly away. That's why this is fine if you're looking for a relaxing flight, but if you're looking to mix things up, sorry, but The Falconeer is kind of for the birds.
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.