Wizard 101

Game review by
Carolyn Koh, Common Sense Media
Wizard 101 Game Poster Image
Magical MMO where kids learn to become wizards.
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 9+
Based on 128 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 497 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Educational value

Kids can learn thinking and reasoning skills as well as teamwork when playing Wizard 101. Combat is won by picking the right card from a deck they create, to play against the computer, and having the right wizards (other kids) in their team with strengths to complement their own. There are also mini-games that kids play in game that involve pattern matching, memory, strategy, and decision-making. While kids will spend a lot of time dueling, they will also be able to use their imagination by decorating their home and crafting.

Positive messages

Cartoon characters are human, teachers in the school range from the small plump fairy-like characters to animals to the stereotypical old wizard with long white beard. The game is about learning and adventuring and the teachers are helpful when assigning you quests.

Positive role models & representations

By playing this game, kids learn that other players can be helpful to winning the game and that you don't always have to game alone. The in-game teachers are good role models.

Ease of play

Easy to play, but younger players may need help. This is a beautiful, colorful animated world, yet you only need low system requirements to be able to play.

Violence

Cartoon Violence where enemies are blasted by magic. Some spells include a bat who spits green goo, a frog who oozes acid, and a creature who farts. Losing participants in a magical duel collapse in various ways and simply disappear or in the case of a skeleton, falls apart and disappear. Defeated players will return to the Wizard School to rest and regain health and mana (magical power). Playing mini-games can hasten health and mana recovery. No blood, gore, or any other visible violent actions.

Sex
Language

In game chat is controlled by quick chat choices which are easily accessed via an icon and menu system. Free-form chat is available but even these and the forums are heavily moderated and boast a stringent automatic language filter.

Consumerism

Gamers playing for free will encounter areas which are locked and players are asked to go to the website to unlock them by paying a fee. This is called a velvet rope model where kids start to play for free but then get roped into spending money.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this is an engaging massively multiplayer online game (MMOG) for kids set in a fantasy world involving wizards. Kids will duel using magic spells that have some crude humor including the release of farts. Wizard 101 is COPA compliant and there are several ways to pay for this game. The download of the game is free and there are free areas for children to try out the game, including the ability to play all the minigames. Family plan subscriptions are $6.95 (per account) a month and general subscriptions $9.95. A micropayment plan beginning at $1.00 is also available to obtain permanent access to particular streets or areas within the game. Game gift cards are also available at various retail outlets. This allows parents to structure a reward system for their kids and many families do play this game together. However, it is also a game that ropes kids in for free, and then dangles additional compelling content in front of them to encourage them to become consumers.

User Reviews

Adult Written byCedric_Cross August 13, 2011

PARENTS. PLEASE READ THIS. I AM BEING AS CLEAR AS I CAN.

Now, I see a lot of people posting in here, and I assume it's over the mess of parents thinking this, kids arguing that. I will say a few things you shoul... Continue reading
Parent of a 15 year old Written bytruth be to be told February 18, 2011
They ban players for there own in game bugs.I payed for 2 year memeberships for my daughters.Another player showed my oldest how to garden on the game.They bann... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old January 9, 2010

Good for everyone 7- 100!

IT IS AWESOME! I guess the only thing bad would be you have to pay to go to new worlds.Still if you think, $10 for one month? You CAN go buy a DS WII XBOX game... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byplaysgamesalot April 10, 2011

stop hating on company

yes its expensive, but i hate parents complaining about how the company wont give them back money because their kid used their credit card. NOTE TO PARENTS: D... Continue reading

What's it about?

WIZARD 101 is a massively multiplayer online game where children take on the role of wizards while playing this game over the internet. Children begin by creating a character, selecting gender, hair, face, skin color, and the color of their clothing. Names are selected through a combination of first names and a two part last name. Children can take a fun quiz to determine the school of magic they are most suited for, or make the selection themselves. Then its off to Ravenswood Academy, to enroll in the various schools of magic. As young wizards, you will run errands and go on quests to earn skills and to obtain new spells, equipment, and gold to purchase more items. As a wizard, kids can use various magic spells to defeat enemies. These spells are represented in game by Trading Card Game style cards showing a graphic of the spell and icons representing the different schools of magic. Most spells will bring up some form of cartoon animal representation, such as a Fire Cat, Lightning Snake, Unicorn, etc. that actually blasts the enemy with magic clouds or sparkles. Combat is carried out by duel and each participant goes in turn. Little Wizards can also team up against enemies or jump in and assist each other. Defeated Wizards are sent back to the school and can go to the faire and play minigames to replenish their depleted health and mana (magical power). High scores attained in these games are displayed at the end of each game.

Is it any good?

This game will appeal to children who enjoy Edward Eager or JK Rowling's magical stories. Apart from combat, little Wizards can earn enough gold in-game by playing minigames and dueling to buy new clothing, accessories, Treasure cards, as well as Houses and housing items to place in their house. As with any MMOG (Massively Multiplayer Online Game), Wizard 101 is constantly changing because it provides regular and free updates to the game giving players more things to do. This is a fun game for parents to explore with their kids. They can even team up with their children in duels.

 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how this online world encourages you to spend money.  For talking points, parents might want to check out Money Lessons in Online Worlds Tips.

  • Do you like playing as a fantasy avatar with others who are really other people?

  • Do you find yourself playing this game longer than you think you should? How might families set time limits?

  • Does this game remind you of Harry Potter's world?

Game details

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

For kids who love creative games

Our editors recommend

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

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

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate