The Ship Game Poster Image

The Ship



Creative first-person stalker may appeal to teens.

What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable

While no blood is spilled, players dispatch their opponents with all manner of weapons -- including scalpels, axes, machine guns, and poisons, among others.

Not applicable

Any game with online play has the potential to inspire obscenities from opponents.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this game is predominantly an online experience. Players hunt each other in a multiplayer environment and attempt to murder each other through various brutal, creative means. Parents should also know that the game is currently only available as a download via Valve's Steam service, requiring the installation of the Steam tool on the family's computer. Common Sense Media does not recommend online play for anyone younger than 12.

Parents say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

What's it about?

THE SHIP players control a genteel passenger aboard one of Mr. X's luxury cruise liners. But this is no vacation on the high seas: Some passengers have been recruited to play a deadly game of hide-and-seek for Mr. X's viewing pleasure. At the beginning of each round, players are assigned someone on the ship to hunt and kill. The goal is to search the ballrooms, hallways, stairwells, and decks and slay your target.

Someone has also been assigned to hunt you, making close contact with other passengers risky. And with personal needs to attend to -- passengers get hungry, need sleep, require a bathroom break, etc. -- players often find themselves in a vulnerable situation. Weapons found throughout the ship -- chef's knives, poison, a Tommy gun, and a samurai sword, to name a few -- are used to dispatch victims. But look out for video cameras, guards, and witnesses -- brandishing a weapon in their presence can incur a hefty fine and require players to spend time in the brig.

Is it any good?


It's really too bad that the game's marred by glitchy gameplay, because the premise holds great promise. The critical roles played by strategy and discretion make The Ship much more interesting than your average FPS. And the game's reliance on online multiplayer action (don't bother with the offline version -- the computer-directed opponents are dumb enough to take a nap in a sauna) increases the unpredictability of the game, as well as a player's need for creative thinking.

While the subject matter is murder, the violence is pretty tame by contemporary standards. No blood is spilled, and combat is clumsy and vague. Like the classic board game Clue, the thrill is in the hunt, not the kill, making The Ship a mannered departure from its mayhem-driven cousins. But glitches like floating opponents, slow frame rate, and crashes all too frequently disrupt the flow of the experience.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the meticulous, focused violence of this game, which is a departure from the mayhem typically associated with first-person shooters. Is quietly stalking a victim more brutal than mowing down countless enemies with a rocket launcher?

Game details

Available online?Available online
Release date:September 11, 2006
Genre:First Person Shooter
ESRB rating:RP

This review of The Ship was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

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

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

  • Smart game lets kids build cities -- and skills.
  • Creative, but lots of bad behavior -- teens-up.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 15 years old Written byranah April 9, 2008
Teen, 15 years old Written byTangyTigerShark September 9, 2016

An amazing game iffy for 9 and under.

this game is not very violent but it is all about murder like, a lot of murder and things you can murder with like blunt weapons,sharp weapons and a few firearms,although there is a lot of violence there is little to no blood when a player gets hit by anything i mean anything 5 drops of blood drop down for 3 seconds. A lot of the other materials are more suggestive than direct for an example there is lots and lots of wine drinking since you play as very classy characters but very very subtle. There is toilet humor,and you have to go poop, shower, drink and sleep but showering and pooping its shown that they're obviously wearing underwear but still shows a big leaf covering the legs and torso. Thats pretty much it actually pretty iffy for 9 years old kindve directed to teens than kids. Suggested ESRB Rating:Teen for Blood Crude Humor Drug Reference Partial Nudity Suggestive Themes Violence
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?