View Poll Results: How do you raise your kids with video games?

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  • Let them play whatever they want.

    5 55.56%
  • Provide a healthy mix of old and new games for your kids.

    3 33.33%
  • Play the classics only.

    1 11.11%
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Thread: Kids and Video Games

  1. #1
    Insert Coin (Level 0) GreatBazunka's Avatar
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    Default Kids and Video Games

    Hi all,

    I am looking for a bit of opinion/advice here as i don't have a lot of other people to run this by.

    I have two year old twins. I am a huge video game enthusiast and collector. I really want them to enjoy video games with me which the already seem to. So that is not the problem. The problem is that i am so paranoid that they wont embrace the classics, which are the main focus of my collection. I do have newer games, but i feel like i would be extremely disappointed in myself if they did not like the classics like i do. It's not like i am saying that new games are totally off limits, but i really want to make sure that they enjoy them all. The thing that really sparked this thought for me was a video on you tube that i watch about a guy buying a coleco collection from a guy with cancer. He said that the guy complained to him that he had to sell his collection because his kids did not want to play the old stuff. They were already spoiled by xbox and playstation. Aside from having cancer, that part of the story really killed me. The last thing that i want is for the collection that i have so painstakingly amassed and curated to go unappreciated. I want to share my hobby with my children and have them enjoy it too.

    I am not looking for a debate on whether or not kids should have "screen time". I have already made up my mind on that. Video games are great for learning, problem solving, hand eye coordination, patients, and team work. Plus i don't play or own many violent games if any. So that is also not a worry of mine. I just have such an appreciation and enjoyment that i want to make sure my children enjoy it all just as much and appreciate all of the styles of games and not get spoiled by new fancy graphics. As of right now they are always asking for Mario Odyssey and i want to expose them to the different generations of Mario without making them feel like i am just taking Mario Odyssey away. Has anyone else dealt with this and what have you done? Any good ideas on what works?

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Ryu Hayabusa (Level 16) Custom rank graphic
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    I'd say play what you want and let them play what they want. There's a fair chance your kids will never like retro games, or even video games in general, to the same extent that you do. Every person develops their own individual tastes. I don't think there's necessarily anything sad about selling off a collection. When I'm gone, if my family doesn't appreciate my games, I'd rather they be sold off to people who would love and appreciate them than to have them rot in a garage or attic or whatever. I used to hold on to a huge doll collection that my grandmother left me, which was very important to her, but while I was nostalgic about seeing the dolls in her home when she was still alive and seeing her express her passion for them, I wasn't that interested in the dolls themselves and would never put them all out on display like she had them. They stayed packed up in boxes for years, which I think is far sadder than when I finally decided to donate them. Now I hope they're in the hands of people who truly enjoy them.

    Anyway, eventually, many kids turn their noses up at what their parents are into. Sad to say, but your kids may eventually like games less because you're so into them. While they're young, kids usually want to get involved in whatever their parents are doing. If they see you playing classic games, they'll probably want to try too. But if they have no interest in a game yet you force them to play because you're trying to instill interest in the classics, you'll probably only drive them away from those games. You don't want to turn playing games into a chore or homework. There's no keeping them from having interest in modern games either. Once they're of school age, they'll be around peers getting hyped up about the latest games. Probably no different than you and I as kids. So I'd say just let them play a mix of games, and let them pursue video gaming just as a fun hobby that they can dabble in as little or as much (within reason) as they please, rather than something to be educated in.

  3. #3
    Insert Coin (Level 0) GreatBazunka's Avatar
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    Default

    Very well put. Thanks for the info. I think that more often then not i find myself dreaming that they like what i like which, in turn, causes me to think i need to force it upon them. Nothing was forced upon me when i was a child and i liked what i liked. You are totally right. I should just indulge their interests and let them be kids. No one ever likes being forced to like something and one day they are probably going to have to work for a good chunk of their lives anyway. Might as well enjoy childhood while it lasts. I know i try to.

    All i know is that if they don't like my games, then i will need to make sure that they end up with someone that appreciates them. I can't bear the thought of everything ending up in an estate sale or being donated... But one step at a time.

    Thanks for setting me straight.

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    Default Interesting topic

    My son is 4 and and sees video games differently that I did as a kid. He plays some of phone games ( PBS Kids ) and they're pretty good quality and somewhat educational. He knows who Mario is and even Pac-Man but when he tried to play Super Mario Bros he was a little confused by the controls. I hate to say it, I showed him how and he starting to get it but..... lost interest. This happened again with the Legend of Zelda. He watched me get to the first dungeon and that was about it. I know he like these older games but when compared to modern games, yes on a phone, I think they come off abstract and hard to play.

    About 6 months ago. We were out having a burger and beer and my son saw a Galaga arcade cabinet and instantly he wanted to play it. He grabbed a chair and was fascinated with it. I had had yet to see him so interested in an arcade game. I gave him some quarters and tried and then tried again and again. He was really into it. I then it dawned on me that when presented in the right way arcade games were still magical. I think it's not just the games it's the whole experience of putting in quarters, joysticks, slamming on buttons the artwork and everything else.

    I like my collection and would not sell if if my son wasn't into it. I would like it if my son was into games but right now he's obsessed with trains and while I never was train crazy, it's been really a lot of fun. We watch train videos and go find things to do with trains and it's something new and I've been helping him start a collection Thomas minis,

  5. #5
    Crono (Level 14) Custom rank graphic
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    Just let them play what they want, as long as it's reasonable. As in it's something you already have available to play rather than just go and keep buying whatever game they ask for whenever they ask, and isn't inappropriate for kids in regards to content.

    A lot of kids actually prefer older games if given the choice. I remember some flea market vendors I used to visit mentioning how their grandkids liked playing NES and SNES games over anything current.

  6. #6
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    Mine have always been more interested in whatever I'm playing than anything else, as someone alluded to above. Somehow they've never gotten the hang of side-scrolling platformers. At all. It is pretty frustrating (infuriating) seeing your 9 year old unable to get past the first tall pipe in SMB. Hah. But she stuck with SMW pretty well the other day. My kids mostly play Minecraft and such on Kindles. Good, because they clearly aren't hung up on graphics, but they apparently aren't learning how to use more than one button at a time.

    The exception to them being interested in what I play is the aforementioned minecraft and other games they play with their friends, though no Fortnite, thankfully. Also, my son is pretty into D&D, so he's played some NWN, Diablo 1 & 2, and now we are playing Baldur's Gate Dark Alliance together.

    My wife likes Dr Mario, so that's setup on SNES to be flipped on easily and play some 2-player against each other. The kids like that too, because you can usually handicap to make the games close.

    In the end, though, the combination of the kids being busy with school/friends/hockey, and us restricting screen time, they really have barely scratched the surface of my collection. That's kind of annoying, because I want them to love it as much as I do, but the opportunities to play just aren't there.

  7. #7
    Ryu Hayabusa (Level 16) Custom rank graphic
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    My 9-year-old nephew just got bitten by the Fortnite bug, which I'm kinda ehhh about. Apparently he's been playing it at school and at the mall. Now my brother is trying to figure out if he can get one of his computers to run it or if he should just buy a new PC or console. I know it's comedic and not gory, but I still feel iffy about my nephew playing a Teen-rated shooter at his age. But I guess that kind of stuff is normal. I suppose I was the weird kid in that I never played a Teen-rated game until I was in my teens and never played a Mature-rated game until I was 18, and not because that was forced upon me but just because I had no interest in games like that until those ages.

  8. #8
    Strawberry (Level 2) AdamAnt316's Avatar
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    Default

    I've done my best to introduce kids to classic games. Several years ago, I brought my Colecovision to a family gathering for the benefit of an older cousin, as mentioned in this thread, and the younger kids there seemed to enjoy playing around with it as well. More recently, I brought my Super Famicom to a birthday party for one of my friend's kids, and they got a kick out of playing Japanese Mario games. This year, I may bring my NES and SNES Classic Minis to the family Christmas party, so that my younger cousins can play around with them (I brought over the Intellivision and Colecovision Flashback consoles a couple of years ago, and they enjoyed playing with those).

    As for the subject of the thread at hand, I wouldn't force classic games on kids, but making them available (and giving occasional demonstrations) isn't a bad idea. Several years ago, Ralph Baer was giving a talk at an antique radio swapmeet, and I set up my Magnavox Odyssey 300 (didn't yet own an example of the original console at the time) so that people could experience his creation. I kept an eye on it, and spotted some young kids (probably under 10 years old) playing the Pong-like games, and seeming to enjoy them. I remarked on this to Ralph, and he said "A game is a game." Pretty much sums it up, methinks.
    -Adam

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    Here's a suggestion, OP: walk backwards in time with the kids. You say they like Super Mario Odyssey? Then play Super Mario Galaxy 2 with them. After that game, play Super Mario Galaxy 1. Follow that one with Super Mario Sunshine. Gradually reduce the fidelity / polygon-count of the games as you step further and further back in time. Next thing you know, you and they will be playing Super Mario 64, Mario Kart 64, and SNES Star Fox.



    Now you might hit a *ahem* brick wall if you try to switch them from 3D to 2D games, but if so, then it would be something to accept. There are plenty of awesome old 3D games you can play with them from the 1980's - 2000's. And if they can make that transition to 2D games? Then all the better!

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