We’re delighted that you’re interested in Guardians of Ancora! But today, Dr Bex Lewis has some wider thoughts about choosing games for children…
Children’s games are more than apps, and you’ll probably recognise the names of some of the most popular games for children: Moshi Monsters, Club Penguin, Bin Weevils, MyCBBC, Farmville, HABBO Hotel, Stardoll, BuildaBearville, World of Warcraft, Runescape and Neopets, with Minecraft and FIFA remaining popular games. It’s easy for children to find new games through a simple search on Google, although they’ll typically get recommendations from friends or relatives.
In 1998 PEGI was formed as a ratings system for games, offering advice as to what age is appropriate. Most parents seem to use rules and ratings system as guidance rather than as absolutes, with the ratings enabling them to make an informed choice. You can read more on www.pegi.info, while www.commonsensemedia.org/game-reviews suggests games that are age-appropriate and indicates what they are suitable for.
I’d suggest that families look at a range of potential games, discuss what might be gained from them and identify areas that need more care – or boundaries. If you are an avid gamer, think about what your own behaviour says, and take the time to test out games before your children use them.
NB Guardians of Ancora carries a PEGI 3 rating.
Dr Bex Lewis is Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University and Director of Social Media Consultancy Digital Fingerprint. She is the author of Raising Children in a Digital Age: Enjoying the Best, Avoiding the Worst, published by Lion Hudson in 2014.