Just because you’re a father doesn’t mean you have to give up gaming. Gaming is an activity that can bring you closer to your children. Here are some tips for dads to introduce and explore gaming with their kids:
Andy Baio introduced his son to video games chronologically as an experiment. He introduced each console to his son in order they were released. There's a certain charm to the classic titles of yesteryear such as Super Mario Brothers, Sonic the Hedgehog and Pac-Man, and while they may not have the replayability of modern games, their simplicity is their charm. Repeat this experiment with your son or daughter, before they're introduced to the complexity of modern games.
Playing through a good RPG is similar to reading a fascinating book or watching a favorite TV show. Even though many RPGs are only one player, the dialogue, cut scenes, and puzzles can be enough to engage multiple people. Discussing battle tactics, hypothesizing over plot points, character development, and the mystery inherent in storytelling, can give you and your child lots to talk about. However, PC gaming offers the choice to play together if both parties have a computer and a copy of the game in question. While some RPGs are made for single players, many have co-op play, so you can share the adventure with your kids and even some of their friends.
Off the Screen
While playing games can bring you closer together in some ways, it’s important to explore the outside world as well. Video game and comic book conventions like PAX, E3 and Comic-Con can help to bring your interests off the screen and into larger social situations. Designing and making your own costumes for these events can be a fun and creative bonding experience between you and your child, as you take the stories and characters you love and make them come to life.
While large developers still dominate the market place, services like Steam and GOG Galaxy have given a voice and platform for indie games to take root. While there is a discrete formula for what makes a compelling video game, story or no, independent developers now have a platform to explore what makes a game memorable as well as replayable.
For instance, the game Antichamber challenges players to think outside the box of what is possible. There is no plot or character; instead, it is a game that challenges perceptions. Elegy For A Dead World, on the other hand, lets you create the plot of your own game, by landing a character on an unknown planet and asking the player to fill in short writing prompts. Games like these ask players to interact on a more cerebral level than conventional games, and if you haven’t tried them, they might be exciting ones to explore with your kids.
Article by: Cherie Nelson