Call of Duty World War 2 S.A.F.E. Rating Violence: 1 out of 5 Language: 2 out of 5 Sexual Content: 4 out of 5 Positive Message: 5 out of 5
Call of Duty has been the “Belle” of the FPS (first person shooter) ball since day Halo. COD games are created with extremely high budgets and make intense amounts of money for the developers. These games are released on nearly every gaming platforms and each version seems to outsell the previous. Needless to say, many parents are being asked by their young teen or even pre-teen kids if they can go out and get the game for Christmas. Be sure to read this post before you decide to stuff their stocking with this Rated-M game. Here’s my breakdown.
Call of Duty is a war game. You’d expect a fair amount of pew pew pew gun action and bloody gore and that’s exactly what you will get. In the first few minutes you see someones face blown off, arms and legs missing, and a explosions blowing people and pieces of people into the air. When you have a chance to fire back you see the brute force of your weapon as people’s faces and bodies become covered in blood when you shoot them. The level of gore is dependent on the weapon you are using but it never truly lets up. There is continuous shooting, explosions, stabbing (bayonets and knives), and hand to hand combat. Some of the violence isn’t just to soldiers, there’s discussion about how prisoners are handled, as well as civilians being killed.
The gore does pick up, however, when you play the Zombie portions of the game. So does the language. Imagine half decomposed, limbless bodies coming after you over and over again in increasing numbers. Then imagine you have nothing but a shovel to defend yourself. The gore STARTS there and just gets more brutal as the game continues. In the Zombie levels you have to get past puzzle like obstacles while fighting off these waves of the undead. You get stronger weapons and unlock traps and boosts to kill the onslaught in more affective, yet, gruesome ways. The Zombie section isn’t a separate purchase or something you can lock or unlock, it’s a part of the game.
The language is rated R from the very beginning. You’ll hear F—, Sh–, D—, H—, G–D—, and D— throughout the game. It’s your basic FPS, war game vocabulary. While I can’t guarantee I’d be saying gosh and golly gee during hardcore WWII combat, that doesn’t change the fact that we have to look out for our younger kids and young teens and decide if the language in games like Call of Duty World War 2 is something we want them to take in.
Sexual Content (4)
No sexual content besides a bit of “locker room” talk between a few of the soldiers. There is discussion of girlfriends and fiancé as well as some chatter about meeting women when they get to Paris. Any sexual content or conversation pretty much ends at jokes and innuendo.
Positive Message (5)
This was the most surprising part of Call of Duty World War 2 for me. I wasn’t expecting such positive vibes from the game. The focus on the heroism, the discussion on PTSD, commitment, sacrifice, and what you must withstand to face combat. It was all very very interesting and quite emotional at times. If you play the story mode you will get a sense of belonging to the unit you fight with during the game. You play as a soldier named Red Daniels, and live a bit of his history, future, and present day life in combat. This story takes you from D-Day until you secure the bridge across the Reign, the river that you must cross to get into Germany and eventually Berlin. The epilogue takes you a bit beyond that even. (Don’t want to spoil it.)
The generation of men and women who fought in WW2 are looked upon with honor in this game. There are speeches given by some characters in the game that really emphasize the sacrifice the young (and old) people of that day had to face as they fought the evil that was the Nazi regime. I was impressed by the attention given to the human sacrifice during the time of WWII and feel like, if a teenager or adult is old enough to handle the content, the message will be a good one for many of us to hear.
I didn’t test multiplayer in this game but I will say simply that there are no ratings listed for multiplayer on any video game. The reason for that is that the conversations had while you play online with other people can and will turn ADULT very and very quickly. My recommendation is that online, multiplayer, gaming be something is only approved for your older teenage kids that you trust can handle the onslaught of adult language and innuendo.
This game is rated M for Mature. That means it was CREATED for people aged 17 and older. No doubt, your younger teen will be asking permission to play this game. Hopefully you will take all the information in this article into account before blindly allowing them to play a game with content that’s intended for users up to five years older than they are. There’s a big difference in the mental maturity of at 12 year old and an 18 year old.
I absolutely wouldn’t recommend games like this for kids with any kind of attention problems or anxiety. The game is very stressful and barely lets up for cut scenes and story elements. Shortly after any kind of break in the action, though, you’re right back into it and the fighting is very intense. This action includes explosives going on all around you, being shot at, meeting objectives before you lose members of your squad. It’s all very high impact and the “fight or flight” response would be very very extreme during this game. The drama during some of the cut scenes could even be a bit much for some kids and teens because it deals with heavy and dark topics like PTSD, losing friends in combat, and the mistreatment of civilians and prisoners.
Be wise with games that have an M rating. Know what your kids are getting into and don’t buy them the game just because they wear you down and you give in. Be smart enough to protect them from content they may not be ready to see. It will definitely be worth it.