To listen for parents tell it, the perfect video game is educational, provides small life lessons, strengthens hand eye coordination, and keeps the kids entertained for roughly an hour at a time. Listening to kids, however, it appears that educational qualities rank far below the wants for speed, action, rad moves, and betroad güvenilir mi great guns. It is hard to believe that there are games which fulfill the requirements expected by both parents and kids.
Parents should always make the time to play the games alongside their kids; the only problem with using this approach to picking video games is the fact that the game is already in the house and the money spent. Opened games are rarely returnable and once they are in the house and their hot little hands, kids will not let go of games without a lot of fighting, stressing, and upset. Thus, making an informed decision prior to bringing the games home is a must!
Laptop or computer does a parent go about picking out a video game for the children to play? Reading a back corner of the cover is unlikely to present a lot of information whereas the buzz on the internet can be so forbiddingly filled with insider lingo that it is hard to discern if the game is appropriate, too violent, or perhaps even contains content that is objectionable.
At the same time, simply because a game is very popular and the evening news shows long lines of consumers waiting beyond your stores for them to go on sale, does not mean that it offers the kind of game play the parent wants to invite into the home. Fortunately, there are five simple steps to picking video games both parents and their kids will love. These steps are not complicated, require a minimum of effort, and are rather reliable.
- Check the ESRB Rating
The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) developed a rating system that ranks game content according to age appropriateness. The ratings are “EC, ” “E, ” “E 10+, ” “T, ” “M, ” “AO, ” and “RP. “
Games designated with an “EC” are educational and fun for preschoolers and young grade-schoolers. An “E” notes that the games are appropriate for all players, and while preschoolers might have more of a learning competition to get the game-play right, there is no objectionable content. Look out for games rated with an “E 10+” since these games are arranged for kids more aged than 10. Some mild language is usually incorporated into the game.
A game rated “T” is arranged for teens, and parents should be aware of that violence, sexual innuendo, somewhat nudity, and also curse words are par for the course. “M” for mature indicates games for those over the age of 17 and the blood, guts, gore, and sex are legendary in these games. Upping the ante are games marked “AO” or adults only, as they are “M” squared. An “RP” rating simply means that a rating is pending, and parents should wait on buying the game before the rating has been apportioned.
- Look at the ESRB Content Descriptors
Since preschoolers and grade-schoolers cannot simply be pigeonholed into age brackets, but should be much further differentiated by their maturity levels, parents will be wise to look at the ESRB content descriptions on the backs of the video game packets. They list potentially objectionable content.
For example, “animated blood” refers to purple, green, or other kinds of unrealistic blood that may be shown during game play, while a listing of “blood” is an indicator that realistically represented blood is perhaps the game play. Children highly sensitive to blood may not enjoy playing these games, even if they are rated for their age brackets.
- Understand the Varieties When Shopping for Older Kids
Parents who have braved the age appropriate ratings, and also made it through reading the descriptions may now be stumped by a further classification: the kind of game-play their kids may expect.
Older kids may like “FPS” (First Person Shooter) games that put them into the action from a first person perspective, rather than seeing the character they are controlling doing the actions — which is the case in “TPS” (Third Person Shooter) games. In addition, some games are classified by the kinds of content that provides the storyline, such as vehicle simulation games, strategy games, or sports and puzzle games.
Shooter games are the most violent while strategy games are perhaps the most educational. Puzzle games require strategic thinking but do not offer a lot of action moves that appeal to teens.
- Visit the Game Platform Manufacturer Website
Parents may visit the website for the gadget that will ultimately allow the kids to play the video games. This might be the website for Xbox 360, GameCube, Nintendo, Xbox, and a host of sub-platforms. The companies list the video games created for them, their ratings, and more often than not also post trailers, screen shots, and brief outlines of the actual game itself.
Although such a website does not offer an in depth and neutral analysis of the game, it is a rather useful tool for getting a good feel about game play and content and not rely solely on a rating, a back corner of a package, or the marketing efforts.
- Check with Organizations That offer Independent Game Evaluations
There are various organizations that are not tied in with the video game industry and still offer advice to parents. Some groups focus on the educational aspects while others are faith based and review the games from this angle. Find a group that meets your personal criteria and peruse the reviews on various games you are looking for for your kids.
One of the most well known groups is the Entertainment Consumers Association which offers insight into the industry as well as the games. Parents who want more descriptive information about the games they are considering will do well to visit the boards and websites of such groups and learn from other parents whoever kids might already be playing these games.
Since these are interactive boards, parents have the unique power to actually ask questions of other parents, and if there is a particular concern about a game, this is the venue where you can get more information.
If All else Fails
Of course, if all else fails, there is the old fallback on the classic games and characters. Crash Bandicoot, Mario, Spyro, and Pokémon are game characters which have been around for a while and in a host of incarnations. Even as the educational value of some of these games is controversial, they do offer rip-roaring fun, rad moves, and most certainly the entertainment value the kids appreciate most. At the same time, they eschew nasty language, nudity, and express violence parents object to.
Parents in a time meltdown or those who simply cannot find a game that meets their standards in most cases find a winner in these makes. Moreover, since they are part and parcel of a popular series, parents and kids can make the buying decisions together. For example, the popular Mario games offer offshoots like “Luigi’s Mansion” which offers the exploration of a haunted house, while other offshoots are cart racing games.
Totally different game play — yet the same reassuring characters and the same level of appropriateness — make this a premier opportunity for parents and children to agree on the game play the kids would like to try out, while staying away from potentially objectionable games that offer similar game play.