Let me preface this by saying that none of my kids are as experienced in gaming as I was at their age. The NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) launched in North America in 1985. I, however, launched in North America only three years prior to that. My first gaming experience was playing the Atari 2600 classic, California Games, and I’ve been playing off and on ever since.
I feel like those games were incredibly hard, but it’s very possible that I simply
was a stupid child lacked the dexterity to play well as a small child.
All this is to say that I’ve chosen these games in light of the fact that my children
are stupid have little to no hands-on gaming experience. If your small children are already done prestiging for the fifth time in COD BLOPS 2 then this list may not work for them. Then again, after all that bloodshed perhaps something light is just what the doctor ordered.
My final interjection before I start is that this isn’t a set-it-and-forget-it list, these are not just games for your kids to play on their own. These are games you will want to play with them. In fact, you are more than likely to keep playing these games long after your kids have passed out on the couch.
Game to play with your kids #1:
Platform: Wii U
There are actually twelve different minigames in Nintendoland so I’ll just touch on the best one for playing with small kids and give a few honorable mentions.
In The Legend of Zelda: Battle Quest each of your kids is given a Wii remote, which they swing as a sword, and you take the tablet style gamepad and play as an archer. This is a great parent/child game because as the archer you are able to protect and support
your favorite child those who need it most at the time. Also, since you’re kids are literally swinging the remote like a sword, it’s pretty good exercise… for a video game.
Honorable mentions go to Balloon Trip Breeze, Yoshi’s Fruit Cart, and Donkey Kong’s Crash Course.
Game to play with your kids #2
Platform: Wii U
The Lego games are always fun but this one is a cake topper. Almost unanimously this game is being hailed as one of the funniest video games ever made. I laughed so hard so many times that I’m still blaming Lego for the milk that is continuously dripping out of my nose. While this is a single player game, you, your kids and even your wife will have no problem watching as you take turns stealing (aka confiscating) Lego cars, trucks, motorcycles, helicopters, boats, rocket powered snowplows and mechanical T Rex skeletons in order to cruise around a fantastic Lego cityscape, stopping crime and saving the girl. Since you can’t die in these games it’s great for any age to run about. Just watch out for the shark (scared the pants off of me).
Game to play with your kids #3:
Platform: Wii U (Surprise! Let’s just face it. If you have children and don’t yet own a Wii U, then you don’t really love them.)
New Super Mario Bros U is very similar to the original Mario games. You run, jump, get power-ups (flower power, flying squirrel suit, etc.) and defeat Bowser in order to rescue Princess Peach. Not much has changed in the Mario formula over the years. What has changed is that now up to five people can play at a time.
While the four players with the Wii remotes play as Mario, Luigi, blue Toad and yellow Toad, the player with the gamepad can place blocks to help (or hinder) the others using the touch screen.
The fact is, if you have not played this game with your homicidal wife continuously trying to throw you into the lava or enemies and a five or eight year old on the gamepad placing blocks everywhere like they’re going out of style, (which they’re not, by the way) then you have not really played this game at all!
Well, that’s my list. One last thing to remember when playing video games with your kids is to forget about winning/beating levels. As a gamer dad, it’s important to turn down the gamer and turn up the dad. Playing with your kids is not about winning, it’s about playing with your kids. Enjoy it,
even if they do suck.