I’m a 35 year old gaming dad of a five year old. Sorry, five and a half yearr old, my bad William. He is following in his dad’s footsteps and becoming quite the gamer himself. He even has his own Gamertag, Yankee Candle Kid. My wife frowned on him having it but his argument was solid. “Why should dad get all the achievements and points when I’m doing the hard part?” I let her know that Co-Op is easier with this. Besides, it was two against one and she doesn’t know how to change stuff on the Xbox so in all reality she didn’t have a leg to stand on.
Now what I love about William is he plays the game because they are hard. He single handedly beat the Portal Series and has now been requested by a few players on Xbox live for his Capture the Flag abilities in CODBO. He loves his Lego games because, “They take a long time to beat.” He knows a bad game when he sees it, “I’m talking to you SpongeBob.” He plays games because they make him think and he has to acomplish something to get to the next level. He is like a gaming buddy that I can send to bed when he starts making winning a little too much.
I love our nights when mom works late when we order pizza grab a couple of cokes and play COD for the night. These marathons go on till midnight sometimes, but how can you tell him no when he says; “Just a little longer dad I almost have enough for new guns.” Is he the best player on the team; depends on the game.
Team Death Match: Not so much, well unless you use him as a pick or sitting duck to flush out the enemy. Domination/Headquarters: He scores big time because he just goes for it, cover him and you won’t lose.
Capture the Flag: Best flag runner you can have with his best game of 5 Captures.
The point is he plays and doesn’t quit because it gets hard. I’m proud of his abilities and dertermination with his gaming.
This is when things gets hairy. There have been parties in the recent past that gaming comes up. No surprise when you find that more than half the people at a party now play Xbox. We talk about what’s out and what’s coming out and sooner than later William will chime in about Portal or his resent weapon achievement in Black Ops. I get the same reaction all the time. “You let him play Xbox?” Well yeah he is good. “Aren’t you worried about how violent the games are?” Nope. At this point I get the look of horror and disbelief at my comment.
Then explain: Well here let me show you this.
Me: Hey William, What is Call of Duty?
William: A Game on Xbox.
Me: What can you tell me about the game?
William: It’s pretend dad. You know not real.
It is amazing how quickly it shuts, usually a mom, right up. So see people even though when I grew up video games were going to rot your brain and way too violent; I still got to play because my parents let me know that anything coming out of the Idiot Box wasn’t real.
So I guess the question I should be asking is “Why aren’t you talking to your kids?”