The World Ends With You Game Poster Image

The World Ends With You



Fascinating, dark but compelling action RPG game.
Popular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The protagonist is a punky teenager full of angst, who's rude and feels alone and outside. But he has an optimistic female friend who tries to keep him in check.


There's fantasy violence when you kill various Noise – monster-like giant frogs, wolves, and the like. Players will use powers like lightning and fire within collectible power ups called Pins to kill the monsters.


Mild flirtation between two main characters.


Occasional potty talk like 'ass' and 'crap.'

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the game that this is one of the most creative games ever made for the Nintendo DS. Yet the game's protagonist is outside of society, angry, and a little depressed. Occasionally, he uses mild cuss words. There is some fantasy violence used to kill monsters that includes lightning or fire. The characters, story, and gameplay are so unique that kids may want to play the game over and over again. Kids can use Nintendo Wi-Fi to trade items, including songs and play a minigame.

What's it about?

In THE WORLD ENDS WITH YOU, you wake up as Neku, a punky 15-year-old, who is disoriented in one of the busiest sections of Tokyo. Somehow, you're able to hear what everyone's thinking. You have a strange looking, tattooed Pin embedded in your hand, and you get a message on your cell phone from a group called The Reapers. The first message: You have seven days to do their bidding or you'll be erased. (That's a code word for being killed.) Within minutes, you meet an affable 15-year-old girl character named Shiki, who takes your flack and balances your pessimism with her optimism. This dialog-fueled story, presented somewhat like a graphic novel in the top screen, is both chilling and mysterious.

Just as the story is packed with enticing drama, so is the gameplay packed with compelling ways to move forward and stay alive as each day ticks away. You'll collect various Pins with a variety of powers to help you combat Noise, annoying monsters which prevent you from reaching your goals. By using the Pins and tapping and slashing on your touching screen, you'll unleash powerful forces that will vanquish your foes. You just can't keep fighting without thought, however. That would be too easy. When your energy is depleted, you'll have to wait a few moments as a circle fills to boost your health. During this time, you'll use the touch screen to move your character around and avoid being hurt by the Noise.

Is it any good?


As one of the most unique games ever created for the Nintendo DS, The World Ends with You is filled with tasty, creative features. For instance, you can shop and collect CDs, which are full length pop songs that you can listen to at your leisure. In addition to controlling combat on the lower screen, you can also control it on the top screen using the control pad. However, it's difficult to alternate between both fighting modes. So if you simply want to use the touch screen only, the game is programmed to help you play along the top screen automatically. Essentially, there's so much here it almost feels like a console game. In other words, unique story + smart gameplay = a great DS game.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about what they would do if they, like the characters in the main story, had seven days to solve a problem or perish. How does the use of a deadline compare to other media using such melodramatic deadlines, like the TV show, 24? What role did the unique graphic-novel-like art within the game have on your appreciation for the game? Did you think the story was scary? What if you could read other people's minds?

Game details

Platforms:Nintendo DS
Available online?Available online
Developer:Square Enix
Release date:April 22, 2008
Genre:Role Playing
ESRB rating:T for Fantasy Violence, Mild Language, and Mild Suggestive Themes

This review of The World Ends With You 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

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

Kid, 10 years old April 9, 2008

Good game!

This game is very fun. I would not recommend it for under 10, though. It uses mind reading to solve stuff. It is good. Really, no kidding.
Parent of a 12 year old Written byCaleb_Mitchell May 26, 2009

Amazing game, IF you're patient & have 0 anger issues.

Okay, I have to say this is an amazing game. It's 100% original, very brilliant, very's just amazing! BUUUUUT, it has some issues. For starters, it is EXTREMELY difficult. As you can set your own difficulty level at any time in the game, & change it at your will, this shouldn't be a tremendous problem, but it is. Here's why: though you can set the game to easy-peasy, you really will get no benefits for doing this. Item collection is essential throughout this game, & your chances of getting items from defeated enemies drops as the difficulty level does. Therefore, to get the best items you really should play it on the harder difficulty levels, but this makes the game darn near impossible, especially on the bosses. It is also extremely long, & if you're a gamer like me, & you want to complete every aspect of a game, this will take FOREVER. As for appropriateness, this is a pretty iffy game. The language is pretty brash, tons of uses of A**, h*ll, d*mn, & a couple uses of b*tch & godd***. The suggestive themes are very noticeable, which is unusual for a hand-held game; almost every girl in the game has mass cleavage. As far as violence goes though, it's pretty standard fantasy violence (e.g. heavy violence, but no blood). Overall I'd probably say 13+ like the ESRB said.
Teen, 14 years old Written bynaruffyyoh October 9, 2010

The best story ever

This game is simply a must play. I don't mean because of gameplay, but because of story. This game has the best story out of any game I've ever played (which is saying a lot). This game is pure proof that video games are fully capable of telling stories as well as books. Language however, is definitely an issue. There is a lot of swearing and rude dialogue in this game, but as much as I hate to say it, it really needs to be there because it helps make the characters seem real. It would be kind of odd if characters like "Beat" didn't swear. As long as you let your child know somehow that swearing is wrong, let them, actually make them play this. There are a lot of lessons that could be learned from the story of this game. Buying your child this game even though it has swearing is the equivalent of a teacher giving their young students a book with strong language.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models


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