Toy Story 3

Game review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Toy Story 3 Game Poster Image
Parents recommendPopular with kids
Phenomenal game with action too intense for younger kids.

Parents say

age 9+
Based on 7 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 16 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

As in the Toy Story films, the main messages here are about friendship, cameraderie, cooperation, and helping out folks in need.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Woody, Buzz, and Jessie -- the three main protagonists -- are paragons of friendship, always ready to help one another out, always wanting everybody they care about to be safe and happy. Woody has a moment of selfishness, but overcomes it by the end.

Ease of Play

There is so much to do here that it's actually difficult to rate the overall ease of play. Some missions are simple enough for almost anyone to handle with ease. Others require the hands (or fingers) of a more experienced, skilled gamer. The game does try to level the playing field for newbies, though, sometimes adjusting its difficulty on the fly. For instance, on one particularly difficult jumping sequence, if you fail three or four times, the game will say, "Having trouble? Try it now." and actually provide you with extra platforms to land on, making the jumps much easier.


There is a lot of cartoony fighting in the Toy Story 3, including multiple instances in which laser guns (or similar fantasy weapons) are used. Some sequences are rife with earth-shaking explosions. Old West bandits fire pistols into the air (never at anybody). Players will destroy robots with blasters, shatter wind-up gargoyles with lightning bolts, fire cannons at flying plush toys, and hurl plastic balls at just about everybody. Players can also shoulder bump, drop-kick, or pick and and throw random toy characters whenever they want. In the Buzz Lightyear video game (within the game), Buzz can be blown to pieces (and immediately regenerated). All of this is mitigated by the characters being toys.


No bad language, but it's possible in one scene to make Stinky Pete the prospector live up to his name with a whoopie-cushion-esque sound.


Obviously, this game is tied in to the Toy Story 3 feature film -- which is a heavily merchandized movies.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the Toy Story 3 video game will certainly appeal to younger kids that fall outside the age recommendation of the ESRB's E10+ rating. Whether or not younger kids can handle the laser fire, explosions, and drop-kicks they'll find in the game is questionable. There's nothing too graphic here, but the action can be loud and frenetic, there are several spooky parts involving a haunted mansion, and seeing Buzz Lightyear get his head blown off -- even if he is a toy, and even if it's only for a nanosecond -- could certainly scare little kids. It's important to know what you're kids would be experiencing before you decide to let them play.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byJEDI micah October 7, 2012


In my opinion, most games that are based on movies aren't really up my ally. But this game, OH MY GOSH! It is truly a fantastically amazing game! There... Continue reading
Adult Written byBrioCyrain May 6, 2012

A great movie tie-in

10 and up due to the difficulty of the game, not the content therein.
Kid, 10 years old December 19, 2020

i play this with my4 year old brother all time

i play this with my 4 year old brother all the time i dont like it but my brother has a blast playing it with me
Kid, 10 years old June 28, 2020

very fun but very hard as well

my favorite level was the emporer zurg level which me and my cousin played for hours. but never could get past it or any of the other levels

What's it about?

Rather than simply rehash the plot of the movie TOY STORY 3, the video game of the same name offers an entire open world for players to explore, interact with, and customize. Several game levels are based on scenes from the film, but even those (found in the game's \"Story Mode\") are often non-linear in design, offering for loads of exploration in completely interactive environments. They might send you on scavenger hunts, races, or puzzling quests set in film scenes. They game's main draw is the Toy Box mode, which allows free roaming -- as Buzz, Woody, or Jessie -- in a Wild West town (and later, a haunted mansion, space port, and fantasy land), where players can pick up diverse quests from Toy Story characters, customize the town's citizens and buildings in any number of wacky accoutrements, and earn money to buy more toys and games to interact and play with. It's a living world filled with constant action that can draw your attention in a different direction at any moment. The PS3 version will allow you to play as villain, Zurg, as well.

Is it any good?

Toy Story 3 is astonishingly good, and undoubtedly one of the best movie-based games ever. The open world Toy Box mode can be a completley different experience for everybody who plays, and offers so much to do and see that kids can expect to be entertained for a good, long while. The story scenes that retell the plot of the film are crafted in a spectacular, non-linear fashion that reward roaming and exploration almost as much as the Toy Box mode. And, wow, is that Toy Box mode good. It contains a seemingly endless list of missions that will have you scaling mountains, tossing bandits in jail, driving a stunt track, costuming a mariachi band, or performing any number of other crazy tasks. The amount of variety is simply stunning; Toy Story 3 features enough game styles to fill a full library -- racing, platform jumping, first-person shooting, third-person shooting, character customization, world building, puzzles, stealth, strategy, and on and on. All that, and the game looks and sounds terrific, with many of the original actors providing voices for the game. This is an absolute winner.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Toy Story 3 is a video game that features some ties to the movie it is named after, but which mostly offers you new and original adventures featuring the movie's characters. Does playing the game make you want to see the movie?

  • Families can talk about the violence in Toy Story 3. Do the explosions and laser beams scare kids at all? Or can they write it off, since the action takes place among characters who are supposed to be toys? Should a game based on a kids' movie be less violent by nature? Or do we need to accept cartoon violence as an inherent part of a kid's action game?

Game details

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