Parents' Guide to

Watch Dogs

By Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

Thrilling but very violent, mature high-tech tale.

Watch Dogs Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 65 parent reviews

age 12+

Yes this game does have some violence in it we can all agree. There is this setting in the settings menu to turn blood and gore off. You can turn swearing off too. This games great and you may see sex and nudity in it. That's only in the free play. After you complete the campagin you unlock free play. In the free play you can visit strip clubs and have sex. The campaign has non of this at all. My 12 year old son plays it. Great game and definitely let your 12 year old kid play it.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
Easy to play/use
2 people found this helpful.
age 15+

Leave this one for older teens.

This was a very fun game with a compelling story line. You are a hacker who is put in to take down gangsters in Chicago trafficking drugs and slaves. Very fun open world experience. The thing is is that this game does have strong sexual content because in one mission the gangs are shipping sex slaves and there are naked breasts, buttocks. The good thing is is that there are no sexual acts shown and you’re player is the hero who is there to take down these gangs and help the city, kinda like Batman. Strong language occasionally, but can be turned off in the settings. Action packed fun game for teens. Hope this helps.

This title has:

Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
2 people found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (65):
Kids say (105):

For all its mature content, Watch Dogs is an extraordinary game. With an underlying theme about government surveillance versus our perceived freedoms in the West, the game tries to do it all. It mostly succeeds: You can be a hacker, a spy, a vigilante, a soldier, a race car driver, a collector, an interrogator, and a detective all rolled into one interactive entertainment experience. For example, on one mission, you're eavesdropping on a subject to ensure it's the right person before you engage in gunfire. Then you obtain a critical piece of evidence before you flee the scene on foot, car, or boat (be sure to raise the drawbridge while you're on it, so your pursuers won't make it). You get the idea.

Those who don't want to game alone can partake in online races and decryption matches (two teams of four) to add to the fun, not to mention four kinds of "digital trip" mini-games and side missions such as collecting or scanning items. Despite its ambition to give you everything in one game, Watch Dogs does in fact live up to its hype. Even though we're introduced to other members of Aiden's family (who play a key role in his motives), it's unfortunate that we don't become emotionally invested in him. Perhaps Ubisoft will deliver a more compelling character in a future sequel. Still, overall, this multi-platform title is one of the best of 2014 so far -- albeit for mature players only.

Game Details

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.

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

See how we rate