A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
No positive messages. It's a dark, disturbing tale of mental illness, addiction, murder, personal demons.
Positive Role Models
Main character, a mom named Lorraine, might seem like a positive role model trying to find her missing son, Callum, in an amusement park, but she's not a positive role model.
Ease of Play
Simple controls; easy to learn.
Violence & Scariness
Doesn't show a lot of violence, but you'll come across a murdered body, with blood, plus letters, notes, reports of unspeakable tragedies. Slit wrists can be seen, implying a suicide attempt, implied murder with a knife at one point.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Minor references to sex in backstory dialogue, as thought out loud by the main character.
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Harsh language, including "f--k," variations on that word.
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Products & Purchases
Extras section explains this game is built upon the larger FunCom massively multiplayer online (MMO) game, The Secret World; players will unlock extras for other game. It reminds players MMO is free to try for a month.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Main character takes strong prescription pills, which appear to cause (or curb?) psychotic episodes. Screen blurs, scary objects appear, with supernatural undertones.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Park is a very mature downloadable adventure game that deals with disturbing themes such as murder, kidnapping, psychoses, and more. It has many frightful scenes and themes. There's some violence and blood, with bodies and descriptive notes about injuries to people. There's also a lot of strong profanity in the dialogue. Minor references to sex occur in the backstory from the main character, and main character also takes a number of drugs, either to cure or cause psychotic episodes. Players will also notice that this game is a standalone adventure in the MMO universe of The Secret World, and playing the game can unlock additional items for that game. It also pitches the MMO subscription in the extras menu of the game as well.
Is It Any Good?
This short horror story isn't like most other games, which is a good thing for those looking for something fresh and fascinating. It can be completed in a couple of hours or less, but the story -- as disturbing as it is -- and frightful locations make it a worthy $10 ride. Those who like scary games such as the Five Nights at Freddy's series will especially get something out of this creepy Windows game -- though the game relies less on jump scares and more on psychological horror. The game isn't perfect, mind you. Even if you have a powerful computer, it's full of bugs and choppy frame rates that make the action feel extremely slow. Fortunately, the story atmosphere and simple controls don't ruin the overall experience.
Without giving much away, parts of the story are also questionable, such as Lorraine having no problem riding on a Ferris wheel alone and late at night. The same could be said about notes that mention how someone close to her was mysteriously killed on one. And isn't she supposed to be looking for her son? Maybe if Lorraine said something like "maybe I'll be able to see him if I'm high up" or something to that effect. If you can forgive the game's brevity and few shortcomings in the technical and story department, mature gamers who love psychological horror will no doubt find The Park a disturbing, intriguing, and memorable adventure.
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.