Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"


Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Game Review

Shooters featuring dystopian worlds, merciless villains and raging robots are legion. But they're not all the same. Which brings us to the sci-fi game ReCore.

A New Beginning

Microsoft Studios' latest trigger-puller centers on the story of a young woman named Joule. She's not a seasoned fighter. She's just a techy, capable gal who fled Earth—along with several other ships full of humans—after our once-green globe turned green-no-more thanks to a nasty plague.

The survival-oriented few who made it out set their course for an inhabitable, desert-like planet called Far Eden. Since this place of possibilities was many light years away, Joule was placed in cryo-sleep. The goal was that the majority of the colonists would hibernate for 200 years or so and awaken to a Far Eden that had been terraformed into something much more flourishing and homelike.

When the Joule comes out of cryo-sleep, however, that's not what she finds. At all. Not only is the planet she's on still pretty arid, but the other colonists have vanished. She's seemingly all alone except for her faithful Corebot companion, Mack, a robot dog that's juiced up by a glowing power core.

With a little exploration, Joule makes an ominous discovery: It seems that all the other Corebots have become corrupted. Instead of being helpful companions designed to give humans some mechanical aid, they've all somehow been reprogrammed for mechanized annihilation. So she'll have to pick up a gun and see if she and Mack can get to the, uh, core of the problem.

Shooting for the Cores

As this game's title suggests, those power cores—which give everything from bots to terraforming machines their electric charge—are a central part of the story here. Joule must seek out special prismatic cores throughout the game's open-world map in order to save what's left of mankind's future.

This game therefore becomes one of platforming (Joule can double-jump and dash to distant spots thanks to a jetpack and power boots), collecting (there are cores, mechanical scraps and robot-improving blueprints to be found everywhere) and shooting (she must defend herself from scores and scores of bad bots).

So just how messy does all this roustabouting and robo-strafing get? Not bad at all really. The targets are always robots. And the energy weapon Joule uses never splatters anything. When foes are weakened to a certain point Joule can use a grappling hook device to snatch out their power core in a brief fishing-like game. Otherwise, the baddies are simply zapped until they explode and disappear.

The firefights can get a bit frenetic at times as Joule and her robot pal shoot it out with groups of mechanical opponents. But if Joule herself is bested, she tumbles and the screen quickly fades to black. No blood or mess. And then she restarts at an earlier spot before a missed jump or an overpowering encounter.

Other than that—as well as some painfully long load times that make you feel like you may have slipped into cryo-sleep—there's little else negative to report here. There's definitely a lot of trigger pulling in the mix, but ReCore is as much about exploring, jumping and swooping as it is blasting bad bot baddies.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles



Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes



Readability Age Range







Record Label


Xbox One, PC


Microsoft Studios


September 13, 2016

On Video

Year Published



Bob Hoose

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!