Last week, after speaking about youth culture at my home church, a parent came up and asked me about today’s popular video games. He said something I’ve heard hundreds of times. “My son loves video games and I just don’t know which ones are okay and which ones aren’t!”
I’m right there with ya! My son Alec loves video games and we’ve had numerous discussions about video games- which are appropriate and which aren’t.
My quick two cents: Read & Rent!
First… Read about the games. This past week our Youth Culture Window page actually featured an article titled, MOVE OVER MARIO that provided some great insight about today’s popular games and how to help our kids make discerning media decisions. You’ll find some great advice and links in that article. You’ll also find that we’ve written about games in past articles- articles about “screens” in general and even specific games. Always take the time to do a little investigating when little Johnny asks you if he can go to Billy’s house and play a game he says is clean… a game called Grand Theft Auto. 🙂
NEW NOTE: As Adam pointed out in the comments below– my friend Al Menconi has a great website that includes many video game reviews… a great resource for parents: www.AlMenconi.com
Then, if what you read about the game seems okay, then Rent it before buying it. Most Blockbuster Video stores rent all the current games for the major game consoles. And it’s better for you or your kid to spend less than $10 on a game than $60 only to find out, you wouldn’t have allowed the game in the first place.
That’s my two cents!