Eurogamer Expo With The Layton Family
We went to the Eurogamer Expo this year to talk to families first hand about the games they enjoyed together, and how they went about choosing them.
The Layton family were at the event, Mum and two boys. Wendy said she wasn’t a gamer herself but could talk coherently about how best to pick and choose appropriate games. It was great to hear first hand from a family really wrestling with the issues around video-games that face us all while at the same time obviously being enthusiastic about them.
She talked about getting advice from older family members, and that it was a “difficult” decision to keep on top of with all the different sources to get information and play video-games. This kind of family advice can be really valuable. In my family I’ve often benefited by talking to others who have slightly older children.
“I think [PEGI Ratings] are a good idea because it’s hard to find out information about games. Particularly when my 14 year old tells me ‘oh, everybody plays it it’s perfectly safe’. But it’s not just the violence it’s things like gender and sexuality that worry me.”
We suggested the additional PEGI descriptors on the back of the box will help Wendy understand what is in the game in different areas. This led to talking about families playing games together. “I could play some of them. I like the fantasy stuff but the shooting is not my thing.”
“The problem I have is that with a 14 year old playing I have a 10 year old who then wants to play the same thing.” This is a common scenario in families and not an easy one to resolve. However, with some guidance around which games are good for different ages (like our PEGI charts and Family Gamer TV’s age grouped awards) this is achievable.
The key thing is to find age appropriate alternatives that are just as exuberant and entertaining as the older games. There are plenty of examples of these if you know where to look. Hopefully Ask About Games can help in that regard.
We’ll be back with more Family Surgery interviews soon.