When The Student Becomes The Master: Gaming With A 10 Year Old
Growing up my parents were not very into video games. However, they did come through with me and I never missed out in terms of video games as I grew up with an Atari 2600 and a ZX Spectrum before consoles took over my life.
I was sure that when I had kids I would be the cool and hip dad, the dad that was with the times, the dad that knew what it was. Well for a while I did know what it was and my son loved playing games with me……. Then they changed what it was!
My gaming journey with my son started when he was around 2. He got a real kick out of watching me play Super Mario Sunshine on the Nintendo Game Cube. I am sure there were other games that he liked to watch, but that was the main one. I remember him grabbing his head in shock when Metal Mario made a mess of the town.
For all this crap about how kids get addicted to video games and how they are bad for them, I think they are actually very good for a child. I can credit my sons love for reading and quickly picking up the ability to read to The Legend Of Zelda The Skyward Sword. No, I am not saying he was able to play the game when he was 3 or 4. But he was so sure that I was not reading him the whole story (I was) that it drove him to want to learn to read himself so he could be sure. So take that all you video game doomsday naysayers that claim they are rotting kids brains!
Anyway, for years I would play modern and classic games with my son. He seemed to enjoy playing things like Streets Of Rage, Turtles In Time and other beat em up style games and he would be up for pretty much anything I suggested and then came along a thing called Bakugan.
I am sure all parents have that one defining moment when they realise that they are not young anymore and something that their kids are into has passed them by. Well for me it was this thing called Bakugan. It started with toys and a TV show I had no clue what was going on, but he learned that there was a Bakugan video game so I thought that was where I could jump in and get to learn about it with him…… boy was I wrong. I freaking hate Bakugan with a passion and I attribute a large part of that to being yelled at by my son when we would play the game together. It was actually two games, one was called Bakugan Battle Brawlers and the other was called, Bakugan Defenders Of The Core. It was the Defenders Of The Core game that put him over the edge with my lack of skill.
I would ask what I felt where fair questions like “what is a gate card?”, “who is that guy?”, “where do I go?” “how do I do my special attacks?” and so on. At one point it got so bad and he wanted me to destroy something and I could not do it so he put his controller down, took mine, did what needed to be done and put it back in my hands. Oh the humiliation, the shame! I had become that old dude in those shows that would show the cool kids doing the latest stuff and the old guy not having a clue what is going on.
In all seriousness, playing games with my son is one of the best things about being a parent. We do not play together as much as we did, but the main reason for that is something called Fortnite Battle Royale. I will ask him if he fancies a game of Tony Hawk, Streets Of Rage, Mario Kart and I am 9/10 met with a response about how his squad needs to get someone leveled up or do some kind of daily challenge, but he will play another time!
While part of me does wish that he would still be interested in all the same styles of game that I am much like all my friends and their kids. I actually find it really cool how he has his own tastes in games, some of which drastically differ to what I like. But it is really cool to hear him be excited about games that if it were not for him, I honestly would not have really given a second thought and the fact he still loves playing some of the games i love also keeps that smile on my face.
I would love to know what gaming memories you guys have with your kids and if there has ever been a game that came along where they became the teacher and you the student. Or if there was a game that just made them yell at you a lot!
By: Guest Blogger