World of Cars Online

Common Sense Media says

MMO racing game for kids; starts free, but may want to buy.

Age(i)

2
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5
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8
9
10
11
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17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Like most Disney cartoons, messages are positive. Quests send players to assist various Cars characters and the game is based on the movies which emphasize helping one another, teamwork, humbleness, as well as personal achievement.

Positive role models

The game is modeled after the movie which have positive role models. Lightning McQueen starts as a narcissistic and selfish character who learns humility and the value of true friendship; and Sally Carrera is a powerful lawyer. Both characters are played by live game masters and interact with players at special events.

Ease of play

Driving around the game and playing mini-games are all accomplished by mouse-clicks. Although some games are less intuitive than others, younger kids can easily navigate the menus and the game world.

Violence & scariness

The Tractor Tipping mini-game involves causing Tractors to fall over but they then pick themselves up.

Language

Not an issue as kids are only allowed a "white list" of words to use.

Consumerism

The game is free to play, but also has an enticing subscription model which buys a certain number of coins that then allows players to customize the details of their their cars. Since looking cool is the name of the game, kids will most likely try to convince their parents to purchase the subscription. While there is no actual in-game advertisement, there are links however, on the main website where you log in, to other Disney products.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is a massively multiplayer online game based on the Disney / Pixar movie, Cars. It is free to play, but certain enticing features require a monthly subscription to unlock, so kids are likely to want a subscription after trying the free game.  It is also a browser-based game which means that there is no software to download and install but can be accessed using an internet browser such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Chrome. While there is chat in the game, it is either from a drop down menu or filtered so that kids who are chatting can only use words approved from a "White List."

Parents say

Not yet rated
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Kids say

What's it about?

This massively multiplayer online game places you inside the world of Disney/Pixar's Cars as a animated vehicle. Young players create and customize a car avatar and then explore the familiar areas they've seen in the movie, as well as other new expanded areas of this online world. You can play mini-games, go on quests, and race. The majority of the mini-games are racing games on various different tracks around the world, but there are also other mini-games played with characters from the movie where they ask you for help performing various tasks. You might deliver produce, find a specific part or plant, or assist in paint jobs. Another feature of the game is decorating your yard which is basically player housing - and inviting your friends to view it. Eventually, kids will be able to build their own race tracks.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Disney has created a very simple racing game by using the mouse to lead the car, i.e. where your mouse pointer moves, your car will follow. These controls make it simple, even when reversing or making a three-point turns.  Voice-overs assist with instructions and chat limitations create a safe world for young gamers.  Although not ESRB rated, Disney uses the same safety features found in their other online worlds such as Toontown Online and Pixie Hollow Online.

This is not an educational title but younger kids can still benefit from the hand-eye coordination practice, item matching, and memory games. Kids who enjoy the Cars world will be happy exploring the World of Cars Online. However, while kids can play for free, they will likely want a monthly subscription which enables them to do more in this world. Luckily, the monthly fee is reasonable at $5.95 per month.

Online interaction: With the free version, chat is limited to drop-down menu-chat (also known as Speed Chat).  With a paid subscription, parents can enable Speed Chat Plus (which allows kids to type their chat - but will only allow words from a "White List"). These safeguards help to ensure that kids cannot harass or bully each other online.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about sportsmanship. Why do you say "Good Luck" to another player before you begin a race or "Good Race" if you win?

  • Families can also talk about the amount of time kids spend online playing a game. Why is sitting for long periods of time not the best for your health? What is eye exercise? Why must we look at close things as well as things that are far away?

  • Families can also talk about whether this free game made you want to buy the subscription to get more stuff within the game. Why do we need more stuff?

Game details

Platforms:Windows
Price:Free or $5.95 monthly
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Disney Interactive
Release date:August 12, 2010
Genre:Massively Multi-player Online Game (MMOG)
ESRB rating:NR for Not Rated (Windows)

This review of World of Cars Online was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 9 years old September 12, 2010
AGE
5
QUALITY
 

awsome

i love it
What other families should know
Safety and privacy concerns
Kid, 7 years old May 31, 2011
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

Good Game

I got it a year ago and ive been playing it mostly every day!
What other families should know
Great messages
Teen, 13 years old Written byvan ly September 13, 2010
AGE
7
QUALITY
 
Its a fun game!!!!!!

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