Caved in and got the little one a Sony PS3? And now you’re confused staring at the stack of game consoles to buy and wondering where to start? Well, thankfully for you, we do your homework and recommend the following ten games for your gaming junkie kids.
Mater National! Disney Cars
I loved the movie so it’s no wonder that I’m a sucker for the game. This second release based on the animated film Cars features many characters from the movie. But this new version introduces new competitors coming from all over the world that will race with Lightning McQueen to bag the top prize. This is great pure fun especially for kids who love car racing.
We recommended it for: Boys, ages 5 and up
Little Big Planet
Little Big Planet is a pretty neat game that allows users to play it both online and offline. In the game, up to four players control their own highly-customisable “Sackboy” character to move across various levels, avoiding traps and enemies and solving puzzles to reach an end goal. We love the game because it’s creative and has infinite replay value. It’s definitely a game worth buying as it can be picked up by young children and adults alike. The only two setbacks are the fact that some of the later levels, and the level creator in particular, may be too complicated for younger children and it has teeny weeny bit of violence as “Sackboy” can die by falling, landing in fire, tumbling into a bed of nails, etc. Thankflly, he or she will always be “respawned” at the closest save point.
We recommended it for: The Entire Family. Kids age 6 and up
Monopoly has gone digital with Monopoly PS3. In this digital version, a max of 4 players are allowed to play and you can choose from a variety of boards, inclusing the classic Monopoly board. Parents will enjoy playing this blast from the past game with their kids, which I’m sure will bring back memories of their own childhood. We love it because it’s a great way to teach money management skills to little ones in an uber fun way.
We recommended it for: ages 6 and up
Rock Band 2
This is an excellent game for those family bonding moments as it requires players to play cooperatively to make it big out there in the “world”. Girls love this game but this is also a perfect way to bring your boys out of their shell. There is a huge selection of songs so there is surely something for everyone in the family. Parents should just be quick to censor songs that have adult lyrics. But other than that, this game is fantastic.
We recommended it for: ages 7 and up
Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures
Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures is a light-hearted retelling of the first three Indiana Jones movies; Raiders of the Lost Ark, Temple of Doom, and The Last Crusade that features characters, locations, treasures, and obstacles made almost entirely of Lego blocks. Kids will find it exciting as it allows them to use their creative thinking skills and unleash their imagination. The two drawbacks are the fact that only two can play this game at one shot and there is a little bit of violence due to the combat nature of the game, but it’s between Lego characters who simply break into Lego pieces.
We recommended it for: ages 7 and up – especially boys and parents who are Indiana Jones Fans
NBA Live ‘09
Boys who love basketball will enjoy this great game. It features a simulation of professional hoops and hardwood courts where players can pretend to be one of the superstars in NBA. Your kids can connect with their friends online and do a 5-on-5 play. There are about twenty four international teams from which to make a choice. If you are debating between NBA Live 09 and NBA 2K9, choose NBA Live 09 for younger players and those new to the game, and NBA 2K9 for seasoned hoops gamers.
We recommended it for: Boys, ages 7 and up
The latest version of this truly adorable game features better graphics of the Prince and his katamaris. The game requires players to roll around their katamaris in streets lined with ice cream cones and many small items. The katamari grow bigger as it accumulates items that stick and roll up to it. This new version allows the Prince to do new moves that makes it easier for him to do his job.
We recommended it for: 7 and up (while it is a puzzle game that is appropriate for all ages, controlling the giant sticky Katamari ball – which involves using both thumbsticks simultaneously – requires a certain amount of motor control that might be beyond the ability of very young children.
American Idol Encore 2
Maybe I’m biased to the famous singing contest franchise and that is why this is in my list. Kids can practice singing their hearts out in front of Simon, Randy and Paula. Your pop-star-wannabes can now spend their time honing their singing skills so they can one day make it big in the entertainment industry. Do watch out for lyrics which contains words like, damn, hell, bloody hell and sentences like, “we’ll be playmates and lovers”
We recommended it for: ages 7 and up. Parents only buy it if you are a fan of the TV show.
Marvel Ultimate Alliance
This is a superhero game that features heaps of Marvel superheroes. In Marvel Ultimate Alliance, your kids can choose to become one of the twenty four characters that have their own distinct superpowers to kick some b*** . We like it because of it’s messaging, which on the granular level teaches kids that heroes stop the bad guys, save the world, and help those in need along the way. Even cooler, players can often choose to assist others on side missions and failing to do so can lead to negative outcomes. On the flip side, it does promote violence, what with the punching, kicking, swords and guns. And there is some mild swearing, with words like hell.
We recommended it for: Boys, ages 10 and up
Hail to the Chimp
This game will introduce your kids to the world of politics. Players can choose to become one of the ten animal characters that will try to become king after the lion has been ousted. When playing this game, your kids will learn to strategize on what moves to use, and when to use them best. There are fifteen games altogether but there is only one ultimate goal for players, and that is to collect as many clams as they can. Why? Because clams represent votes. Overall we liked the game, our only compliant was the slight sexual innuendos and alcohol/cigarette references – (You have the ability to make your opponents seem drunk; a fish can be seen with a cigarette butt, etc).
We recommended it for: Pre teens and teens