As a lifelong avid gamer, I had never really considered the "problem" of staying abreast of my children's video game -playing habits. I simply figured that I would likely be involved in any gaming that they did, so I'd be able to monitor it from the inside, so to speak.
What I didn't account for was the fact that being a husband and father takes some serious wind out of my figurative video game sails. Aside from the odd game of NHL hockey with my son, my personal gaming has all but disappeared. This is probably going to sound overly dramatic to those of you that have never experienced the loss of an important hobby, but it feels like a part of my brain is atrophying and a significant part of what made me, well, me is disappearing. I'm no longer on top of the latest in the gaming world, and I'm in serious danger of losing touch with what I once considered to be a culture I was very much involved with. Plus, my four-year-old is regularly kicking my butt at video game hockey, a game at which I used to be able to dominate against all challengers.
Video Games(click thumbnails to view gallery)
As my kids start to reach game playing age, how am I going to deal with all of the myriad of options that will be available to them? Clearly my original plan of ensuring that I'm a part of their game playing was not very well thought-through.
Luckily for us non-gaming parents - *sniff* - there is an online tonic for what ails us. What They Play
is a site dedicated to helping parents "understand everything you need to know about the games your kids want to play, and bring you friendly, helpful, unbiased information about the content and the experiences that video games provide." Now how about that?
The site takes a decidedly healthy approach to educating parents about video games. Rather than trying to tell you which games your kids should or shouldn't play, they simply offer a venue where you can learn about the games your kids are talking about and see what other parents have to say about them.
Now at least I have an excuse to be surfing video game websites again - it's all in the name of better parenting. Right?